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Track(s) taken from CDA67803

Three Mazurkas, Op 32 No 1

begun in January 1940, remaining two added for the UNESCO concert in Paris on 3 October 1949 celebrating the Chopin centenary, at which only No 3 was performed

Jonathan Plowright (piano)
Recording details: August 2009
Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Hayes
Engineered by Ben Connellan
Release date: February 2010
Total duration: 5 minutes 48 seconds

Cover artwork: Adaptation of the cover illustration for Franz Bendel's Hommage à Chopin, Trautwein, Berlin (1867).


'A fascinating collection, brilliantly dispatched by Plowright' (The Mail on Sunday)

'All of these multifaceted offerings (jewels as well as gemstones) show Jonathan Plowright as beguiling in intimacy … as he is magisterial in virtuosity. Such quality will leave lesser pianists bemused, as as on Plowright's earlier superb Hyperion recordings he has been immaculately recorded' (Gramophone)

'Mompou's 11th variation is the sublimest track on the disc. It is in places like these that Plowright shows his real qualities as a virtuoso, especially his clarity of texture and instinct for phrasing. Warmly recommended' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Jonathan Plowright provides a fascinating conspectus of how Chopin’s example has sparked ideas in others … this disc is a delight' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Fascinating, seldom-trodden paths of the vast 19th- and 20th-century piano literature that rarely find their way onto disc … Plowright's dazzling playing can't be faulted' (The Sunday Times)

'Jonathan Plowright has assembled a towering monument to the Chopin style' (Audiophile Audition, USA)
Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903–1989) became acquainted with Honegger during his studies with Nadia Boulanger in Paris between 1927 and 1932. He also studied with Ravel, who was a key influence on his music; so too was Chopin, alluded to in his Three Pieces Op 2 (for piano), especially the central ‘Berceuse’, the Four Concert Studies Op 14 No 1, and more overtly in the Three Mazurkas Op 32 No 1. In January 1940, Berkeley wrote to his then friend Benjamin Britten: ‘Since I finished the Serenade [for strings] I’ve been working on some Piano Studies. They’re real virtuoso music—I can’t play a bar of them. I’ve also written a Mazurka, which I think you’d like.’ It was not until 1949 that he added two more, when along with eleven other composers he was invited by UNESCO to contribute to a concert in Paris on 3 October 1949 to celebrate the Chopin centenary. Though only the third Mazurka was played on that occasion, it opened proceedings.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2010

Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903–1989) se familiarisa avec Honegger lorsqu’il fut élève de Nadia Boulanger, à Paris, entre 1927 et 1932. Il étudia également avec Ravel, qui exerça une influence clé sur sa musique, tout comme Chopin, auquel il fait allusion dans ses Trois pièces op. 2 (pour piano)—surtout dans la «Berceuse» centrale—, dans ses Quatre Études de concert op. 14 no 1 et, plus ouvertement, dans ses Trois Mazurkas op. 32 no 1. En janvier 1940, il écrivit à son ami d’alors, Benjamin Britten: «Depuis que j’ai terminé la Sérénade [pour cordes], j’ai travaillé sur quelques études pour piano. C’est de la vraie musique virtuose—je ne peux pas en jouer une mesure. J’ai aussi écrit une Mazurka qui, je pense, te plaira.» Il fallut attendre 1949 pour qu’il en composât deux nouvelles, quand l’UNESCO l’invita, avec onze autres compositeurs, à contribuer à un concert donné à Paris le 3 octobre 1949 pour le centenaire de Chopin. Seule sa troisième Mazurka fut jouée, mais elle ouvrit la cérémonie.

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

Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903–1989) lernte Honegger im Rahmen seiner Studien bei Nadia Boulanger in Paris zwischen 1927 und 1932 kennen. Er studierte auch bei Ravel, der einen entscheidenden Einfluss auf seine Musik hatte. Aber auch auf Chopin bezieht er sich in seinen Three Pieces op. 2 (für Klavier), vor allem in der zentralen Berceuse, außerdem in den Four Concert Studies op. 14 Nr. 1 und noch deutlicher in den Three Mazurkas op. 32 Nr. 1. Im Januar 1940 schrieb Berkeley an seinen damaligen Freund Benjamin Britten: „Seit ich die Serenade [für Streicher] beendet habe, arbeite ich an einigen Klavieretüden. Sie sind richtige Virtuosenstücke, und ich kann keinen Takt davon spielen. Ich habe auch eine Mazurka geschrieben, die Du, wie ich glaube, gut finden wirst.“ Erst 1949 fügte er zwei weitere hinzu, als er zusammen mit elf weiteren Komponisten von der UNESCO darum gebeten wurde, einen Beitrag zu einem Konzert am 3. Oktober 1949 in Paris anlässlich der 100-Jahrfeier von Chopins Tod zu leisten. Auch wenn nur eine davon gespielt wurde, so eröffnete sie doch die Feierlichkeiten.

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

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