Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.

Hyperion offers both CDs, and downloads in a number of formats. The site is also available in several languages.

Please use the dropdown buttons to set your preferred options, or use the checkbox to accept the defaults.

Click cover art to view larger version
Track(s) taken from CDS44351/66

Andante spianato and Grande Polonaise, Op 22

Andante spianato: 1834; Grande Polonaise: 1830/5

Garrick Ohlsson (piano)
Recording details: June 1997
National Philharmonic Concert Hall, Warsaw, Poland
Produced by Andrzej Sasin
Engineered by Andrzej Sasin & Andrzej Lupa
Release date: November 2008
Total duration: 14 minutes 8 seconds

Cover artwork: Frédéric Chopin in concert at the Hotel Lambert, Paris (1840) by Antar Teofil Kwiatowski (1809-1891)
Bibliothèque Polonaise, Paris / Archives Charmet / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'Hyperion's big deal … Ohlsson is a powerful and committed player, and is afforded very good sound by the engineers … this is almost certainly how these pieces were played in Chopin's time' (The Mail on Sunday)

'This is an oustanding achievement, which any genuine Chopin lover and student of Romantic music should own … a landmark in the recording of Chopin's music … Garrick Ohlsson and Hyperion deserve the greatest success in bringing this important undertaking to such a consistently impressive conclusion' (International Record Review)

'An attractively priced box set … Ohlsson is in a class of his own' (Pianist)

'The collaborative works receive particularly rewarding performances … Ohlsson arguably offers more consistent artistry than Biret, Ashkenazy, Magaloff, and Harasiewicz' (Classics Today)

'Garrick Ohlsson’s complete survey of everything Chopin wrote for piano (including chamber music, songs, and for piano and orchestra) will delight the completist and the Chopin connoisseur. Ohlsson (who won the Chopin International Piano Competition in 1970) gives us accounts of this wondrous repertoire in weighty and commanding style, aristocratic and impulsive (but not lacking light and shade or contemplative contrasts) and, at times, very sensitive and searching. These vivid recordings were made in the second half of the 1990s and have previously appeared on the Arabesque label. They now sit very well in Hyperion’s catalogue' (Classical Source)
The Andante spianato and Grande Polonaise in E flat major Op 22 exists in two versions, for solo piano (the version most frequently heard) and for piano and orchestra (the original version), the last work that Chopin wrote in this form. The polonaise section was composed in Vienna in 1830 shortly before his arrival in Paris. Perhaps tiring of the glittering stile brillante, Chopin set it aside until he had the inspired idea of prefacing it with a work of an altogether different character that he added in 1835. It is really a nocturne. Indeed it seems that Chopin may have conceived the Op 27 nocturnes as a triptych to include this work in G major. In the event he entitled it Andante spianato, ‘spianato’ meaning ‘smooth’ or ‘even’. It may be, in the words of one commentator, ‘a fairly arbitrary coupling’, but it is nevertheless wonderfully effective and the only one of Chopin’s works for piano and orchestra, other than the concertos, to have retained a regular place in the repertoire.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2010

L’Andante spianato et Grande Polonaise en mi bémol majeur op. 22 existe en deux versions, une pour piano solo (la plus souvent jouée) et une pour piano et orchestre (la version originale)—la dernière du genre écrite par Chopin. La polonaise fut rédigée à Vienne en 1830, peu avant le départ du compositeur pour Paris. Peut-être las de l’étincelant stile brillante, Chopin la délaissa jusqu’à ce jour de 1835 où il eut l’idée inspirée de la faire prédéder d’une toute autre pièce—un véritable nocturne, en fait. Car il semble qu’il ait pu concevoir ses nocturnes op. 27 comme un triptyque où insérer cette œuvre en sol majeur. Finalement, il l’intitula Andante spianato, «spianato» signifiant «régulier», «égal». Peut-être est-ce là, pour reprendre les mots d’un commentateur, «un couplage passablement arbitraire», mais il n’en est pas moins merveilleusement efficace et constitue, en dehors des concertos, la seule œuvre pour piano et orchestre de Chopin à figurer régulièrement au répertoire.

extrait des notes rédigées par Jeremy Nicholas © 2010
Français: Hypérion

Das Andante spianato et Grande Polonaise Es-Dur op. 22 existiert in zwei Versionen: der für Klavier solo (sie ist die bekannteste) und der für Klavier und Orchester (die Originalversion), das letzte Werk, das Chopin in dieser Besetzung geschrieben hat. Die Polonaise selbst entstand 1830 in Wien. Vielleicht weil er des glitzernden Stile brillante überdrüssig war, legte Chopin die Komposition beiseite, bis er den genialen Einfall hatte, der Polonaise ein Werk mit einem völlig unterschiedlichen Charakter voran zu stellen. Es ist ein echtes Nocturne. Und in der Tat hat es den Anschein, als habe Chopin die Nocturnes op. 27 als Triptychon konzipiert unter Einschluss dieses Werkes in G-Dur. Schließlich gab er ihm den Titel Andante spianato, wobei „spianato“ „glatt“ oder „eben“ bedeutet. Mag es auch, wie ein Kritiker bemerkt, „eine ziemlich willkürliche Zusammenstellung“ sein, so ist sie doch gleichwohl wundervoll geglückt und abgesehen von den Konzerten das einzige Werk Chopins für Klavier und Orchester, das einen regelmäßigen Platz im Repertoire gefunden hat.

aus dem Begleittext von Jeremy Nicholas © 2010
Deutsch: Ludwig Madlener

Other albums featuring this work

Chopin: The Great Polonaises
CDH55382Archive Service; also available on CDS44351/66
Waiting for content to load...
Waiting for content to load...