Hyperion Records

Quatre Préludes, Op 17

'Catoire: Piano Music' (CDA67090)
Catoire: Piano Music
No 1: Poco Allegro, sempre molto rubato
Track 18 on CDA67090 [1'47] Archive Service
No 2: Con molto sentimento
Track 19 on CDA67090 [1'06] Archive Service
No 3: Andante dramatico
Track 20 on CDA67090 [3'12] Archive Service
No 4: Andante
Track 21 on CDA67090 [1'45] Archive Service

Quatre Préludes, Op 17
Catoire, exceptional amongst Russian pianist-composers, did not complete a set of 24 Preludes. The four Preludes of his Op 17 are, like the pieces of Op 12, self-contained, and are dedicated to Leo Conus, another of the musical brothers. The first, in G sharp, is in the manner of a wistful slow waltz; and the second, in G major, is perhaps not unlike a Rachmaninov fragment. The third, in C minor—marked ‘Andante dramatico’ (sic—it should of course be ‘drammatico’)—is more extensive, suggesting a hidden programme. The diminuendo coda is notably imaginative. The fourth, in B flat—ending in the minor mode—is only 28 bars long, but Catoire’s remarkable contrapuntal mastery, the lines seemingly independent but magically woven together, shows this composer at the height of his powers.

from notes by Robert Matthew-Walker © 1999

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