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Track(s) taken from CDA67951/3

Indianisches Tagebuch I, BV267


Marc-André Hamelin (piano)
Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Studio Master:
Studio Master:
Recording details: August 2012
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: November 2013
Total duration: 10 minutes 21 seconds

Cover artwork: Materia (1912) by Umberto Boccioni (1882-1916)
Private Collection / Giraudon / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'Works where Busoni found his truest voice … Hamelin, playing with unfaltering lucidity and authority, achieves an astonishing triumph even by his exalted standards. As always, Hyperion has done him proud … an album that could never be bettered' (Gramophone)

'Marc-André Hamelin’s performance of the Busoni Piano Concerto for Hyperion is one of the finest ever recorded of that mammoth work, and now he has produced what is arguably the most important collection of the solo piano music since Geoffrey Douglas Madge’s epic six-disc survey for Philips in 1987 … All the most significant works are here … Hamelin includes some rarities Madge omitted, notably Busoni’s first foray into 'Red Indian’ music, the spellbinding Indianisches Erntelied (not published till 2001) … As to the performances, they are all you could hope from a player of such quality, laced with repertoire he might have been born to interpret. This is playing of a very high order, such as—despite the now numerous competing versions of the Elegies, Sonatinas and Toccata—one seldom hears. Hamelin is well-nigh ideal in sensitivity of phrasing, clarity of tone and delineation of voices, not to mention subtlety of pedalling … He reminds you that you are listening to one of history’s greatest piano composers, a philosopher of the piano to whose ear and mind the whole of European concert music seems to have been continually present. A fabulous set, almost beyond praise' (BBC Music Magazine)» More

'What comes through on listening to Hamelin is the underlying consistency of his approach over this music as a whole and, above all, the singularity of Busoni's musical vision and its relevance to composers and pianists almost a century on' (International Record Review)

'Few pianists have the time and technique to devote to music that is so little-known. Marc-André Hamelin is the shining exception. He demonstrated his Busoni credentials more than a decade ago with an outstanding account of the Piano Concerto … Hamelin handles all with great intelligence. There's a swagger when the music demands it, a fabulously refined sense of sonority and transparency when required. The technical challenges are surmounted so effortlessly that you begin to take the confidence of his playing for granted, when in fact it's a remarkable achievement' (The Guardian)» More

'The gift I'd choose for myself would be Marc-André Hamelin's magisterial three-disc survey of Busoni's later piano music—elusive and haunting material from a pivotal figure' (The Times)» More

'Hyperion does Busoni a great service in issuing this magnificent three-disc box. Those readers who know Busoni mainly (or only) via his transcriptions will have a whole new world revealed to them. Hamelin, one of today’s super-virtuosos but also a musician of the highest rank, seems to be the ideal interpreter, and is captured throughout in superb sound' (International Piano)» More

'This three-CD set presents Marc-André Hamelin, another formidable pianist, in Busoni works from the first quarter of the 20th century. The music draws from the heritage of Bach, Liszt and Wagner, while taking modern paths and anticipating atonality. Even when a particular piece seems amorphous or elusive, these elegies, fantasias, sonatinas and more are continually fascinating, especially in Mr. Hamelin’s commanding performances' (The New York Times)» More

'Hamelin's recent release of three CDs devoted to the late piano music of Ferruccio Busoni represents another milestone in an outstanding career … These three discs contain a number of pieces not previously recorded and also include a sampling of the numerous Bach arrangements Busoni is best known for. The programming is exemplary, the sound is alluring (from a Steinway piano recorded in London’s Henry Wood Hall) and the program notes are excellent. Bravo Hamelin!' (The Whole Note, Canada)» More

'L’impeccable virtuosité de Marc-André Hamelin se joue des pièges recélés par ces redoutables partitions; sa quête faustienne, à la fois analytique et méditée, assume la dimension philosophique quasi médiévale de cette alchimie sonore et nous en livre une référence absolue' (Classica, France)» More

'Marc André Hamelin ist derzeit unumstritten der König der Busoni-Interpreten. Triumphal meistert er die außerordentlichen technischen Schwierigkeiten und die komplexe Kontrapunktik der Musik Busonis' (Class Aktuell, Germany)» More

‘Marc-André Hamelin gelingt, alle Facetten in exzellenten Interpretationen darzustellen … seiner qualitativ hochwertigen Edition der Klaviermusik von Ferruccio Busoni dürfte deshalb über eine lange Zeit der Referenzstatus sicher sein' (Piano, Germany)» More
In 1913 Busoni dedicated to Natalie Curtis the Indianische Fantasie for piano and orchestra, drawing upon themes from her anthology. Just before returning to Europe in August 1915, at the end of his final, eight-month stay in New York, he composed the Indianisches Tagebuch (‘Indian Diary’), a group of four studies on motifs by ‘America’s Redskins’, as written on the title page. The first piece is rather chromatic; it has attracted Michael Finnissy, who used a gesture as part of No 8 of his Verdi Transcriptions for solo piano (1982–5). The second piece, the only one to use themes not found in the concertante work, is a toccata featuring a sixteen-bar ostinato in octaves underlying figurations that fly over much of the upper part of the keyboard. The third piece uses a noble and lyrical cello-like theme in the middle register; its light middle section in the upper register recalls a passage from Lyapunov’s Térek, the fourth of his Études d’exécution transcendante (1897–1905). The final piece also features a lyrical theme and calls for a rich texture, especially at the end. Immediately after completing what was the first book of his Indianisches Tagebuch Busoni embarked on a second one, a study for chamber orchestra entitled Gesang vom Reigen der Geister (‘Song of the Spirit Dance’); this was to be the last of his works inspired by Indian themes.

from notes by Marc-André Roberge © 2013

En 1913 Busoni dédie à Curtis une Indianische Fantasie pour piano et orchestre sur des thèmes tirés de son anthologie. Tout juste avant son retour en Europe en août 1915, à la fin de son dernier séjour de huit mois à New York, il compose le Indianisches Tagebuch («Journal indien»), un groupe de quatre études sur des motifs des «Peaux-rouges d’Amérique». La première pièce est plutôt chromatique; elle a attiré Michael Finnissy, qui en utilise une figuration dans la huitième de ses Verdi Transcriptions pour piano solo (1982–5). La deuxième pièce, la seule dont le thème ne provient pas de l’œuvre concertante, est une toccate faisant appel à un ostinato de 16 mesures en octaves au-dessus duquel volent des figurations sur la majeure partie du registre aigu du clavier. La troisième pièce fait entendre un thème noble et lyrique, comme un violoncelle dans le registre médium; sa section centrale légère dans le registre aigu rappelle un passage de Térek, la quatrième des Études d’exécution transcendante (1897–1905) de Sergueï Liapounov. La dernière pièce, elle aussi, fait appel à un thème lyrique et à une texture riche, particulièrement à la fin. Tout de suite après avoir complété ce qui était pour le premier livre du Indianisches Tagebuch, Busoni s’est attaqué à une étude pour orchestre de chambre intitulée Gesang vom Reigen der Geister («Chant de la ronde des esprits»); il s’agit de la dernière de ses œuvres à tirer son inspiration de thèmes des Indiens.

extrait des notes rédigées par Marc-André Roberge © 2013

1913 widmete Busoni Natalie Curtis seine Indianische Fantasie für Klavier und Orchester, in der er sich auf mehrere Themen aus ihrer Anthologie bezogen hatte. Kurz vor seiner Rückkehr nach Europa im August 1915—am Ende seines letzten, achtmonatigen Aufenthaltes in New York—komponierte er das Indianische Tagebuch, ein Zyklus von „Vier Klavierstudien über Motive der Rothäute Amerikas“, wie es auf der Titelseite heißt. Das erste Stück ist recht chromatisch gehalten und hat Michael Finnissy für sich gewonnen, der eine Geste in der Nr. 8 seiner Verdi Transcriptions für Klavier solo (1982–5) verwendet hat. Das zweite Stück ist das einzige, in dem Themen verwendet wurden, die sich nicht in dem konzertanten Werk finden; es handelt sich um eine Toccata mit einem 16-taktigen Ostinato in Oktaven, das unterhalb von Figurationen erklingt, die über fast den gesamten oberen Teil der Tastatur fliegen. Im dritten Stück erklingt ein nobles und lyrisches Cello-artiges Thema in mittlerer Lage; der leichte Mittelteil im oberen Register erinnert an eine Passage von Ljapunows Térek, die vierte seiner Études d’exécution transcendante (1897–1905). Im letzten Stück kommt ebenfalls ein lyrisches Thema vor und es verlangt eine reichhaltige Textur, besonders am Ende. Sofort nachdem er den ersten Teil seines Indianischen Tagebuchs fertiggestellt hatte, begann Busoni mit dem zweiten: eine Studie für Kammerorchester mit dem Titel Gesang vom Reigen der Geister; es sollte dies das letzte seiner Werke bleiben, die von indianischen Themen inspiriert waren.

aus dem Begleittext von Marc-André Roberge © 2013
Deutsch: Viola Scheffel

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