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Hyperion Records

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Home sweet home by Henry Dunkin Shepherd (fl1885-1891)
Sotheby’s Picture Library
Track(s) taken from CDH55410
Recording details: October 2002
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Martin Compton
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: May 2003
Total duration: 5 minutes 9 seconds

'[Martin] plays poetically throughout, and this for me is an unmissable collection' (The Mail on Sunday)

'You may wonder when you last heard such beguiling, fine-toned fluency … this is a delectable disc finely recorded' (Gramophone)

'Played by Philip Martin with winning insouciance' (The Independent)

'Martin makes for a sensitive, sympathetic guide … this release is a veritable treasure trove for the pianophile' (International Record Review)

'A repertoire that makes for a welcome family evening around the piano; alas for us all that we cannot offer renderings of such sympathetic finesse and lyrical elegance as are here set down by Philip Martin ‘at home’' (Classic FM)

'This repertoire is as delightful to listen to as it is to play … perfect evening listening' (Classic FM Magazine)

'If you’ve ever struggled through Badarzewska’s Maiden’s Prayer, tripped yourself up in Dvořák’s Humoresque in G flat, or wondered how the simple lines of MacDowell’s To a wild rose would sound in capable, smooth-contoured professional hands, this is the disc for you' (The Irish Times)

'Philip Martin is a pianist of great intelligence and much innate musicality; and the excellence of the recording is the final element in the equation for success' (MusicWeb International)

'77 minutes de bonheur pur sucre pour nous faire oublier la morosité de la rentrée!' (Répertoire, France)

Romanze, Op 45 No 1
composer
circa 1914

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Prague-born Viennese pianist Alfred Grünfeld (1852–1924) was phenomenally successful in his day, a prolific composer—especialy famous for his transcriptions of Johann Strauss II—and the first mature pianist of note to record for the gramophone. His first discs date from as early as 1899; during the following fifteen years he cut a further ninety sides, among them some fine Chopin, Schumann and Brahms items and, incidentally, a performance of Poldini’s Poupée valsante, though not, alas, the Romanze.

Grünfeld’s Romanze is heard here in its original key of F sharp major (other editions appeared in F major). The sentimental theme of the piece is in marked contrast to its unexpected central Allegro agitato e appassionato section and, on its second repeat, the octave treatment of the opening theme. But then one of Grünfeld’s specialities was to play the right hand of Chopin’s ‘Minute Waltz’ in octaves and a tempo.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2003

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