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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67326
Recording details: June 2002
City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: October 2002
Total duration: 17 minutes 2 seconds

'A disc as beautiful as it is comprehensive … throughout, Hamish Milne holds his head high, lucidly and affectionately commanding cascades of notes, and he is stylishly partnered by Martyn Brabbins' (Gramophone)

'Yet another programme that makes incomprehensible the narrow choice of 19th-century piano concertos heard in our concert halls today' (BBC Music Magazine)

'This is one of the very best entries in Hyperion’s ongoing survey, and I’m pleased to recommend it to you without the slightest hesitation' (American Record Guide)

'Russian melodic flavour, colourful orchestration and sonorous piano writing is present in abundance throught this very welcome release … The combination of Lyapunov's complete piano-and-orchestra output on one disc, in excellent performances and superb recorded sound, make a favourable recommendation mandatory' (International Record Review)

'Milne, as usual, offers resilient rhythms and tightly focused phrasing marked by a refreshing attention to detail … you’re unlikely to hear a better performance of this repertoire in the foreseeable future' (Fanfare, USA)

'With the risk of the laser beam totally ruining this new Hyperion release from repeated playing, I am now prepared to throw away a few more symphonies just to make room for more Lyapunov' (Pianist)

'This is bejewelled writing carried off with spiritual and technical mastery by Milne' (MusicWeb International)

'there’s no denying the sumptuous virtuosity inherent in these pieces, which pianist Hamish Milne tosses off with obvious relish and technical assurance' (ClassicsToday.com)

Rhapsody on Ukranian Themes, Op 28
composer

Allegro giocoso  [4'44]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Rhapsody is in an easily recognisable simple rondo form. The first folk theme (A), Andantino pastorale, starting in F sharp minor, is delightful in its initial simplicity, though it eventually becomes more emphatic, leading after a gradually quietening cadenza to the bouncy second theme (B), Allegretto scherzando, which begins in B flat minor. After a return to the first theme (A), again Andantino pastorale, the most ebullient of the folk themes (C), Allegro giocoso, is heard in F sharp major. It is a kazachok of a type danced by the Ukrainian Cossacks. In the climactic coda, the first theme (A) returns in noble style, in the context of its faster successor. The combination of charm, exuberance and exhilaration is irresistible. The work requires of the player, to an even greater extent than Lyapunov’s First Concerto, an extraordinary virtuoso technique of the Lisztian type, composed as it was in the wake of his own Transcendental Studies and at the same time as his one-movement Piano Sonata, a work of fiendish difficufty. If the Rhapsody is played with sufficient aplomb, the effect is scintillating. Completed in 1907, published by J H Zimmermann in Leipzig the following year, and first performed in the spring of 1909 with Lyapunov himself as soloist and the Free School Orchestra conducted by A A Bemardi, it was dedicated to Busoni.

from notes by Edward Garden © 2002

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