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Etudes/Tableaux

Sergei Rachmaninov Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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1. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 1. Allegro Non Troppo in f
2. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 2. Allegro in C
3. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 3. Grave in c
4. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 4. Moderato in d
5. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 5. Non Allegro in e flat
6. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 6. Allegro Con Fuoco, Alla Breve in E flat
7. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 7. Moderato in g
8. Etudes-Tableaux Op.33: 8. Grave in c#
9. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 1. Allegro Agitato in c
10. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 2. Lento Assai in a
11. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 3. Allegro Molto in f#
12. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 4. Allegro Assai in b
13. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 5. Appassionato in e flat
14. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 6. Allegro in a
15. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 7. Lento in c
16. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 8. Allegro Moderato in d
17. Etudes-Tableaux Op.39: 9. Allegro Moderato in D

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Rakhmaninov in the Classical Style July 12 2000
Format:Audio CD
Since this pianist was born in the USA,according to the short biography with this CD,it is suprising that a major company there has not taken him on.The series of Nouveaux Interpretes has hunted out on the continent of Europe a series of astonishing talents.Together they prove that the great age of performers is not vanished;instead a new golden age may be dawning.Angelich plays what some people regard as the pinacle of romantic music with stylistic purity after the manner of the best Mozart and Bach players and with respect for the music.Conctantly you ask yourself why,unlike some pianists,he does not produce a particular theme as a climactic utterance.Because of the beauty of the material it is hard to know how and why he resists the obvious temptation to project the romantic emotions that suffuses this music.He always provides the answer in a revelation, by that holding back, of the inner structure of the music and in identifying the true center of the piece.Thereby the sum of the parts is increased immesurably.When it is truly demanded he has no difficulty unleashing huge waves of sound and a limitless virtuosity in the service of his idea of the music.Of course there was another pianist who used to play this music in accordance with traditional ideals of classical restraint and old fashioned structural analysis.His first name was Sergei.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Variety is the spice. . . Dec 8 2002
Format:Audio CD
Of the numerous complete recordings of the amazing Etude-Tableaux (Op.33 and 39), there are two that stand out: this one, and the interpretation by Ian Hobson. After years of thinking that the Askenazy interpretation was the definitive one (and for years, I guess it was, as it was one of the few available on CD), I discovered these two. The clarity of the exposition of the sweeping melodies and multiple "voices" within each piece is a revelation. Whether because of the recording techniques, the venue, the piano selected, or microphone placement, the sound appears perfectly balanced, with just the right amount of spatial "presence" and tonal depth, with an apparant absence of either muddying background or dry over-damping. Where Mr. Hobson's interpretation is prehaps more thoughtful and deliberate, Mr. Angelich's interpretation is more powerful and passionate, and let's face it: the music of S. Rachmaninoff is nothing if not passionate!
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1.0 out of 5 stars NO SERGEI Jan. 31 2001
By Mr. A
Format:Audio CD
There seemed to be no point to this music, as played by Mr. Angelich. It spoke on and on, politely and in a quiet, colorless, tired voice, then stopped. Ugh. Most of the detail is smeared, and the volume never rises above mezzoforte. Even Chopin at his most tubercular probably would have given a more characterful performance of these pieces!
Try Howard Shelley for the complete set (just make sure your copy does not have sound problems) - and for individual etudes-tableaux, try Richter and (on RCA) Sergei himself.
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5.0 out of 5 stars exciting performance Dec 23 2000
Format:Audio CD
Angelich is able to maintain the "thread" of tension admirably in this recording. He certainly also has the technique to see him through. I look forward to additional recordings...hopefully not too far off in the future!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rakhmaninov in the Classical Style July 12 2000
By Peter Charleton - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Since this pianist was born in the USA,according to the short biography with this CD,it is suprising that a major company there has not taken him on.The series of Nouveaux Interpretes has hunted out on the continent of Europe a series of astonishing talents.Together they prove that the great age of performers is not vanished;instead a new golden age may be dawning.Angelich plays what some people regard as the pinacle of romantic music with stylistic purity after the manner of the best Mozart and Bach players and with respect for the music.Conctantly you ask yourself why,unlike some pianists,he does not produce a particular theme as a climactic utterance.Because of the beauty of the material it is hard to know how and why he resists the obvious temptation to project the romantic emotions that suffuses this music.He always provides the answer in a revelation, by that holding back, of the inner structure of the music and in identifying the true center of the piece.Thereby the sum of the parts is increased immesurably.When it is truly demanded he has no difficulty unleashing huge waves of sound and a limitless virtuosity in the service of his idea of the music.Of course there was another pianist who used to play this music in accordance with traditional ideals of classical restraint and old fashioned structural analysis.His first name was Sergei.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Variety is the spice. . . Dec 8 2002
By ArchiChris - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Of the numerous complete recordings of the amazing Etude-Tableaux (Op.33 and 39), there are two that stand out: this one, and the interpretation by Ian Hobson. After years of thinking that the Askenazy interpretation was the definitive one (and for years, I guess it was, as it was one of the few available on CD), I discovered these two. The clarity of the exposition of the sweeping melodies and multiple "voices" within each piece is a revelation. Whether because of the recording techniques, the venue, the piano selected, or microphone placement, the sound appears perfectly balanced, with just the right amount of spatial "presence" and tonal depth, with an apparant absence of either muddying background or dry over-damping. Where Mr. Hobson's interpretation is prehaps more thoughtful and deliberate, Mr. Angelich's interpretation is more powerful and passionate, and let's face it: the music of S. Rachmaninoff is nothing if not passionate!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A sophisticated Rachmaninov Aug. 10 2014
By Hank van Swinden - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Music is a strange medium: sometimes you put on a CD and you immediately know: this is it! Another time it's the opposite. It becomes difficult when you are not sure, there's some doubt, an unpleasant feeling. You put away the CD and try another time. That's what happened with this CD.

Angelich is a formidable pianist with a formidable technique, the sound of the CD is formidable and yet I'm missing something. The first time, after two or three études, I felt a bit irritated and stopped listening; maybe not the right mood. So, some days later I tried again, with the sheetmusic on my lap. Again this vague irritation after some études. Why? It's all so brilliant. What do I miss?

Simply put: it's Rachmaninov. Especially in the slow pieces, for instance op.33 nr.3 or op.39 nr.2: come on, mr. Angelich, this is not Brahms or the subtle, fragile world of Debussy. Slow doesn't mean dead. Do I want my Rachmaninov with a lot of cliché Russian drama and bombast? No, but nor do I expect a composer deprived of his passion in exchange for musical correctness. It reminds me of the way Haitink accompanies Ashkenazy in Rachmaninov's piano concertos: it's all very neat and tasteful but it's not Rachmaninov. There was a time Rachmaninov was neglected as an anachronism in modern music. Happily this has changed long time ago but still there's a tendency to 'correct' Rachmaninov, for fear to be 'cheap'.

I hear that in many small details, like in bar 52 of op.39 nr.1 where Angelich plays the left hand without this grim sforzato (listen for instance to Ashkenazy) but also in the interpretation of complete pieces like op.39 nr.5: it's all very impressive and controlled but I don't feel the 'appasionato', it lacks space, vision. That's the problem with this CD: it's perfect but doesn't touch me. Maybe Ashkenazy, in the 80s, was less perfect, but, in my ears, it's still much more Rachmaninov.
5.0 out of 5 stars Moody, evocative Etudes-tableaux from Angelich Aug. 22 2014
By jt52 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This 1995 recording of the complete Sergei Rachmaninoff Etudes-tableaux emphasizes the music's lush, dark hues, its moodiness. Evocative and rich, it lives in the moment and de-emphasizes both the Etudes' fiery side and also their architectural construction, with the melodies swimming out of the background, connected to the piece as a whole by the texture of the accompaniment rather than any sort of thematic logic or organizing mold.

This is well heard in Angelich's very strong performance of the 5th etude from op 39 set, an etude that can be played with intensity and fire. Angelich instead adds a touch of the languid to it, darkening the sound and slowing the tempo to produce a sensuous background from which this beautiful etude's themes emerge. The 3rd etude from the Op. 33 set marked "Grave", is another particularly effective example of Angelich's vision; he plays it slowly, moodily, to make it a dark episode of melancholy.

I compared Angelich's version with a selection of Etudes-tableaux recorded in 1988 by Sviatoslav Richter, a pianist justly famous for his Rachmaninoff (the studio recording originally released by the Olympia label). In the memorable Op. 39 no. 2, Richter is more active, highlighting the beautiful interplay between voices, with attention paid to the melodic logic and structure, while Angelich presents an Etude that is slower and more rapturous, the themes emanating from the accompaniment's full textures.

Both approaches work; the fact that Angelich, just 25 years old when this disc was released, can create a viable alternative to that of one of the great Russian piano masters is a tribute to him. The recorded sound is good and complements Angelich's dark sound. Angelich has gone on to a successful career since this recording and his talent is evident from this worthy recording.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars exciting performance Dec 23 2000
By pseudonym - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Angelich is able to maintain the "thread" of tension admirably in this recording. He certainly also has the technique to see him through. I look forward to additional recordings...hopefully not too far off in the future!
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