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Track(s) taken from CDA67424

Valse de l'opéra Faust de Ch. Gounod, S407

composer
1861
composer
1859; Faust

Stephen Hough (piano)
Recording details: May 2003
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Release date: August 2005
Total duration: 10 minutes 14 seconds
 
1

Other recordings available for download

Leslie Howard (piano)
Simon Barere (piano)

Reviews

'It's clear that Stephen Hough has technically and spiritually digested the first book of Années de pèlerinage to the extent that he can risk personalising certain pieces without sounding the least bit mannered' (Gramophone)

'Stephen Hough handles this more intimate side of Liszt admirably, with playing of great expressive warmth … as a bonus, Hough throws in Liszt's three operatic paraphrases from Gounod, playing the fine reverie after Romeo and Juliet quite beautifully, and tossing off the virtuoso transcription of the waltz from Faust with appropriate panache' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Always a fastidious pianist, Stephen Hough conjures subtle sonorities in these tender aquarelles … Hough's elegance minimises the music's vulgarity, while he is in his element in the dreamy fantasies on themes from Roméo et Juliette and the rare La Reine de Saba' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Even were Hough's technique less secure and Hyperion's engineering less realistic, this would be a major addition to the catalogue. As it stands, this recording of the first book of Années is the top choice' (International Record Review)

'Pianist Stephen Hough beautifully captures the requisite sense of Liszt's absorption in his self-created Romantic universe, as well as the heart-tugging emotions of his music … it's an exceptionally fine disc' (The Guardian)

'To play Liszt easily, you need at least three hands, but Hough, so brilliant in his recent Rachmaninov set, gets by magnificently with two … a valuable and highly enjoyable disc' (The Times)

'To be without the Hough version of the complete opera paraphrases after Gounod would be like missing the sweet afterthought, one that only a pianist like Stephen Hough can lure us into and then indulge us' (Pianist)

'Stephen Hough has once again excelled himself … the impression conveyed throughout the main work is one of immense musicianship and subtlety, in which the pianist shapes every phrase to make its point, allowing distillations of shade and nuance, a performance in which the composer is allowed to speak on his own terms without any intervening eccentricities or rhetorical extravagances' (International Piano)
Gounod’s Faust, despite its cavalier approach to Goethe, has held the boards from the beginning, but Liszt’s ingenious elaboration of the Waltz, into which he inserts material from the first encounter of Faust and Gretchen, goes a long way towards restoring the demonic spirit of the play, and especially of the dark purpose of Mephistopheles in the relationship of the lovers. Musically, Gounod is transformed and transcended at a stroke!

from notes by Leslie Howard © 1990

Other albums featuring this work

Simon Barere – His celebrated live recordings at Carnegie Hall, Vol. 1 – 1946
APR5621Download only
Eileen Joyce – The complete Parlophone & Columbia solo recordings
APR7502Download only
Liszt: The complete music for solo piano, Vol. 6 – Liszt at the Opera I
CDA66371/22CDs
Liszt: Complete Piano Music
CDS44501/9899CDs Boxed set + book (at a special price)