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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA68043
Recording details: April 2013
Federation Concert Hall, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Produced by Ben Connellan
Engineered by Veronika Vincze
Release date: July 2014
Total duration: 11 minutes 42 seconds

'Godard's music tickles the senses with some attractive, dramatic ideas during the actual process of listening. There is, for example, a delightful, nifty Saint-Saëns-esque Scherzo to the A minor Concerto, and an even better one in the G minor ... the performances by the indefatigable Howard Shelley and the Tasmanian orchestra cannot be faulted' (Gramophone) » More

'Benjamin Godard is nowadays known solely for the Berceuse from his 1888 opera Jocelyn, regularly performed by classical and popular musicians alike. There was more to him than that, however, as this enterprising disc—Volume 63 of Hyperion's Romantic Piano Concerto series—admirably proves. Godard distrusted Wagnerism, and his two piano concertos constrain Romantic sensibilities within the classical form in ways that often resemble Brahms, though Godard's thematic and orchestral elegance remain quintessentially French … the disc is a tour de force for Howard Shelley, who, in addition to coping with Godard's often vertiginous piano writing, directs all three performances from the keyboard, which is no mean feat' (The Guardian) » More

'Throughout all three works, Shelley dazzles with his effortless virtuosity and lightness of touch, and the recording is first-rate. In short, this release must rank alongside the finest of rediscoveries in this most pioneering of series, and one that should spur on others to explore further the works of this greatly neglected composer' (International Record Review) » More

Introduction and Allegro, Op 49
composer
1880

Lento  [5'20]
Allegro  [6'22]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The portentous, cadential opening pages of the Introduction and Allegro, Op 49 (1880), lead the listener to expect a heavyweight, rigorously argued Allegro of Beethovenian profundity to follow. But no—in fact we get quite the opposite. The Introduction ends with a long pedal note of fifteen bars over which the piano weaves delicate patterns. Even after these five minutes Godard still holds his fire, writing a spirited preamble to the Allegro which, after a startling two-handed scale from top to bottom of the keyboard, launches with perfect bathos into a jaunty, toe-tapping crowd pleaser. You may not be able to get the theme out of your head for several days. The almost Gottschalkian flavour of the second subject is hardly less ingratiating. The Allegro, at least, is surely destined to be a light classical hit.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2014

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'Hyperion monthly sampler – December 2014' (HYP201412)
Hyperion monthly sampler – December 2014
MP3 £0.00FLAC £0.00ALAC £0.00 FREE DOWNLOAD HYP201412  Download-only monthly sampler NEW  
'Hyperion monthly sampler – July 2014' (HYP201407)
Hyperion monthly sampler – July 2014
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