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Track(s) taken from CDA67043

Was weiss ein nie geküsster Rosenmund


Stephen Hough (piano)
Recording details: October 1998
St George's, Brandon Hill, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Mike Hatch & Mike Clements
Release date: October 1999
Total duration: 2 minutes 56 seconds


‘the pianist’s giddy romp through ‘The Carousel Waltz’ is a tour de force that brilliantly recaptures both the tender and tough … The unadorned Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky selections are played with heartfelt simplicity and a lean yet singing sonority … Delightful’ (Gramophone)

‘a world of musical enchantment where artifice and sentiment are distinct virtues … Hough’s deftly fingered ornamental tracery [Liszt] … tonal relish [Godowsky] … beautifully conjure this music’s perfumed fragrance, culminating in a charmingly idiomatic account of Godowsky’s Alt Wien reminiscence of the Vienna of his youth … contrasts virtuoso exuberance … with affectionate tendresse … exploits the kaleidoscopic range of the piano in his own highly imaginative arrangements … Encore!' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Few recording pianists can match Stephen Hough in the flair with which he tackles trivial party pieces like the 20 varied items here. He gives such encore material sparkle and point that charms the ear' (The Guardian)

'This is a terrific disc. A master pianist reminds us that the piano can delight, surprise and enchant' (Classic CD)

‘Hough’s own glittering Musical Jewellery Box and his arrangement of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel Waltz are lovely nostalgia fodder … In the hands of a pianist so refined and gentle this is an ideal fireside recital’ (Financial Times)

'Stephen Hough is probably the most Protean pianist of his generation. Not only is he equally adept in the intellectual challenges of the Schumann Fantasie and the delightfully brainless acrobatics of the Award-winning Scharwenka Fourth, but, beyond that, he can tease out the pleasures from the trifles featured here with an old-fashioned wit—and a refreshing lack of pretension—that few living performers can match. What's most striking, on first hearing, is the finesse of his fingers, in particular the kaleidoscopic range of his colour and touch. As you listen again, you're apt to be struck even more by Hough's emotional poise … Excellent … Like any first-class dessert-tray, this one is addictive.' (International Piano)

‘His performances throughout this disc display his acute understanding of Romantic performance practice (finely judged tempo fluctuations and tasteful rubato), his breath … taking digital dexterity, and adept control of piano tone, which ranges from intimate to heroic’ (CD Now)

‘fingers of pliable steel and mind of infinite affection … for he makes one mindful of legendary … virtuosos whose astonishing manual dexterity was matched by spontaneous flights of fancy, making most of today’s keyboard stars sound slightly ham-fisted and emotionally constipated … While one appreciates the impressive clarity of his every interpretive gesture, one also hears an intriguing amalgam of analytical mind and swooning heart’ (Ottowa Citizen, Canada)

'As a perfect continuation of Stephen Hough’s two splendid forerunners (Piano Album), … this New Piano Album displays great conviction and even greater charm, first because its judicious selection and arrangement takes the listener through a constantly changing sound world but also because of Stephen Hough’s brilliant playing. With this repertoire of unusual little piano pieces he firmly establishes himself as a worthy heir to the most famous pianists of the beginning of the twentieth century.' (Répertoire, France)
Emmerich Kálmán (1882-1953) abandoned his ambition to become a concert pianist to compose highly successful operettas. Born in Hungary, he emigrated to America. A contemporary of Bartók and Kodály in Budapest, he was taken up by Richard Tauber, whose recording of Was weiss ein nie geküsster Rosenmund, with its daringly extreme rubato was the inspiration for this transcription. Here Hough makes one sound melt – rather than merely join or elide – with another, a transcending quality that too often divides both singers and string players from pianists.

from notes by Bryce Morrison © 1999

Emmerich Kálmán (1882-1953) renonça à devenir pianiste de concert pour composer des opérettes qui connurent un vif succès. Ce hongrois émigré en Amérique, contemporain de Bartók et de Kodály à Budapest, fut repris par Richard Tauber, dont l’enregistrement de Was weiß ein nie geküßter Rosenmund, avec son legato homogène, sa ligne fluide et colorée, inspira la présente transcription. Ici, Hough fond les sons les uns aux autres, plus qu’il ne les unit ou les élide – une qualité transcendante qui, trop souvent, sépare les chanteurs et les instrumentistes à cordes des pianistes.

extrait des notes rédigées par Bryce Morrison © 1999
Français: Hypérion

Emmerich Kálmán (1882-1953) gab seinen Wunsch auf, Konzertpianist zu werden, und komponierte fortan höchst erfolgreiche Operetten. Er war gebürtiger Ungar und wanderte nach Amerika aus. Der Zeitgenosse Bartóks und Kodálys in Budapest wurde von Richard Tauber aufgegriffen, dessen Aufnahme von Was weiß ein nie geküßter Rosenmund mit ihrem nahtlosen Legato, ihrer fließenden, mit klangfarblichen Akzenten versehenen Linie die vorliegende Bearbeitung inspiriert hat. Hier veranlaßt Hough einen Ton, mit einem anderen zu verschmelzen – anstatt ihn bloß anzufügen oder ausklingen zu lassen –, eine transzendierende Fähigkeit, die Pianisten im Gegensatz zu Sängern und Saiteninstrumentalisten allzu oft abgeht.

aus dem Begleittext von Bryce Morrison © 1999
Deutsch: Anne Steeb/Bernd Müller

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