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Nocturnes: Comp

Frederic Chopin Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 28.31 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Product Details

Disc: 1
1. No. 1 In B Flat Minor, Op. 9 No. 1: Larghetto
2. No. 2 In E Flat Major, Op. 9 No. 2: Andante
3. No. 3 In B Major, Op. 9 No. 3: Allegretto
4. No. 4 In F Major, Op. 15 No. 1: Andante cantabile
5. No. 5 In F Sharp Major, Op. 15 No. 2: Larghetto
6. No. 6 In G Minor, Op. 15 No. 3: Lento
7. No. 7 In C Sharp Minor, Op. 27 No. 1: Larghetto
8. No. 8 In D Flat Major, Op. 27 No. 2: Lento sostenuto
9. No. 9 In B Major, Op. 32 No. 1: Andante sostenuto
10. No. 10 In A Flat Major, Op. 32 No. 2: Lento
Disc: 2
1. No. 11 In G Minor, Op. 37 No. 1: Andante sostenuto
2. No. 12 In G Major, Op. 37 No. 2: Andantino
3. No. 13 In C Minor, Op. 48 No. 1: Lento
4. No. 14 In F Sharp Minor, Op. 48 No. 2: Andantino
5. No. 15 In F Minor, Op. 55 No. 1: Andante
6. No. 16 In E Flat Major, Op. 55 No. 2: Lento
7. No. 17 In B Major, Op. 62 No. 1: Andante
8. No. 18 In E Major, Op. 62 No. 2: Lento
9. No. 19 In E Minor, Op. Post 72 No. 1: Andante
10. No. 20 In C Sharp Minor, Op. Post: Lento con gran espressione
See all 11 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Product Description


Can 21 Nocturnes be a bit too much of a good thing in one go? Not if the composer is Chopin, undisputed king of the genre, and the pianist is Maria Joâo Pires. She's not exactly a prolific recording artist, but the results are invariably special. Not for her the namby-pamby, soft-focus approach that these pieces sometimes provoke. Chopin's approach to the form is by no means straightforwardly lyrical--take No. 4: it starts innocently enough, but in its middle section that mood is abruptly flung aside by a considerably more passionate section. To Pires, each is a song, a narrative urgently to be expounded (just try the famous No. 12--an entirely new experience in her hands, or the way she becomes the most expressive of sopranos in No. 20). Night casts strange shadows, shedding a different perspective on what seems so familiar by day. No one is more aware of that than Chopin. And no protagonist relishes the very innovative aspect of these pieces better than Pires. --Harriet Smith

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great for putting you to sleep... Oct. 1 2001
Format:Audio CD
But is that what this great music is supposed to do? I think not. If this set were available at a bargin price, say a two-fer, I MIGHT recommend this to someone who is on a really, really tight budget. But with what I believe are the two greatest sets of Nocturnes ever set to record (Rubinstein and Arrau) available for about $24, this one is an also-ran. These are pleasant, well played, but ultimately faceless and bland performances - Chopin for people who buy those "the most relaxing music in the world" types of CDs. The sound, like most that DG produces for piano recordings, is pingy and lacks true depth. The 25 year old Arrau and 35 year old Rubinstein offer a richer, more natural piano sound. Skip this one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, a true heir to Rubenstein? Nov. 1 2002
By Jay
Format:Audio CD
Many pianists have tried their hands at Chopin's Nocturne's; few have created anything other than a pretty picture with any of them! The exception to this catalogue of mediocrity was the great Arthur Rubinstein. His performance of these pieces was romantic without being sentimental, powerful without being painful and deep without drowning the listener. In the years since Rubinstein's death, lovers of Chopin have been fishing about for an artist who can do justice to the nocturnes. Maria Joao Pires is that artist. Her interpretations strip much of the drawing room cliche from these works and present them with a power and a lack of pretense that I find as enjoyable as it is refreshing. The passion of her readings are raw in many places, but when required her playing has a delicate shimmering quality with an almost "otherworldly" beauty. I suppose that in comparison, Rubinstein's performance has a beauty that just doesn't exist anymore, but of her generation and in comparison to any one else, Pires is pre-eminent.
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By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Pires' interpretations are really stunning, whether you are listening to her Mozart, Schumann or Schubert, or her Chopin. She captures more emotion, more grace, than any other pianist I have heard. And I have heard the nocturnes by so many of our great pianists -- Arrau, Barenboim, Novaes to name a few. Pires has a different approach, a kindness to her touch on the piano, that fluffs out these noctures, filling them with a patience, an adoration, that has not been recorded before. The fluidity and style comes not just from Pires' fingers but from her heart, and what you get is a rich evocation not just of Chopin's notes on the paper but of his own heart and mind. These are not your typical, textbook interpretation. If you want that, I suggest the very nice Barenboim. But if you've heard these works many times before and want a change, something different, something fuller and more romantic, tender as well as subtlely powerful, do try this Pires. You will hear the noctures as you have never heard them before -- perhaps even think that these are new, undiscovered works, they differ so delightfully from others' recordings. This collection is far superior to any of her predecessors', and I would think that years from now she'll be admired as having delivered a classic performance on these CDs.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Field of Dreams March 4 2003
Format:Audio CD
One must first note that this CD contains all 21 Noctures not 19 as many records do. Secondly, it must be mentioned that this is not an extremely original interpretation of a rather familiar set. But there is a lot to be said for strict renditions that follow the spirit of the artist's intent.
While Chopin infused many of his most beautiful works with sudden rushes and furious passages, the overall spirit of the Nocturnes is that of a languid afternoon as the shadow of the setting sun slowly stretches over the landscape. This is Pires' interpretation and it is a valid one. The dreamy passages glide and flow from melody to melody. There is a softness and a slight hesitation in the playing. While some may criticize the technical aspects, most listeners prefer the beautiful and the satisfying over the imaginative. This recording has depths of emotion that is rare today and for that reason alone deserves the highest accolades.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest classical recordings yet. Nov. 2 2000
By Andrew
Format:Audio CD
I love this recording. I listen to it all the time and I can never get enough of Chopin's nocturnes and Pires' playing. It has qualities I want to recommend to those looking at this review of this recording. Pires' playing has clarity, intelligence, control, and passion. The beauty of Chopin's work comes out wonderfully. Despite the price that one has to pay to buy this recording, it is in the top of its class. I have great trust in Pires' talent that will come to bear in other recordings that she has done that I may wish to buy. This is THE recording of Chopin's nocturnes to have for one's CD collection.
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1.0 out of 5 stars This is not the way Chopin should be played. May 9 2003
Format:Audio CD
I am sorry to disagree with other customers, but in my opinion Pires is really far from Rubinstein, Pollini or Arrau when playing Chopin.
When playing nocturnes, left hand must play in a delicated and softly way... just listen the sample of 2nd nocturne and you can notice how left hand eclipses the right one, breaking all the magic of this composition. She also plays too fast romantic parts !!.
So in my opinion you can skip this CD. I highly recommend the one from Rubinstein collection (RCA).
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pires.A pianist of great insight. May 25 2000
Format:Audio CD
These are absolutely the perfect performances of Chopin 's greatest masterpieces. Just try the no. 13 op.48 in c ( possibly the best of them all ). It might interest some to try Idil Biret on Naxos , as it is one of her very best Chopin records. You might also be surprised how good Ricardo Castro is ( on Arte Nova ).But Pires is quite matchless .Rubinstein included ! But then Arrau has a beauty of tone and control , in a class of it 's own . Ashkenazy does not really measure up.
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