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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67221/4
Recording details: August 1996
St George's, Brandon Hill, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: September 1998
Total duration: 16 minutes 13 seconds

'A set that does deserve celebration. Indispensable to all lovers of Medtner's subtle and enriching art … superlatively played and presented. Such writing positively demands a transcendental technique and a burning poetic commitment, a magical amalgam achieved with delicacy, drama and finesse by Marc-André Hamelin' (Gramophone)

'Hamelin and everyone involved with the production of this release deserves the highest praise' (Fanfare, USA)

'I was breathless with admiration' (Hi-Fi News)

'Merci de contribuer aussi magistralement à la redécouverte de Nikolai Medtner' (Répertoire, France)

'Ce coffret est un monument de l'histoire du disque, comme il n'en pas eu beaucoup depuis une décennie' (The Samedi Culturel)

Sonata in F minor 'Sonata Minacciosa', Op 53 No 2
composer
1931

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Sonata Minacciosa gives explicit and extended expression to the sense of threat underlying the preceding work. Medtner called it his ‘most contemporary composition’, explaining that it reflected ‘the threatening atmosphere of contemporary events’, though it was also probably as much affected by his own recent misfortunes. In one long movement, which exhaustively treats only a small amount of material, the work arguably shows Medtner at his most rigorously intellectual. In particular, the development section incorporates an elaborate fugal episode, and is remarkable as much for the range of tonalities through which it passes as for its rhythmic freedom. In a tailpiece to the coda, the composer ends the sonata in characteristic fashion with an outburst of defiant optimism.

from notes by Barrie Martyn © 1998

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