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Plays Beethoven [Import]

Awadagin Pratt Audio CD
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 26.95
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1. Sonata 9 In E Major, Op 14, No 1: Allegro
2. Sonata 9 In E Major, Op 14, No 1: Allegretto
3. Sonata 9 In E Major, Op 14, No 1: Rondo
4. Sonata 7 In D Major, Op 10, No 3: Presto
5. Sonata 7 In D Major, Op 10, No 3: Largo e Mesto
6. Sonata 7 In D Major, Op 10, No 3: Menuetto
7. Sonata 7 In D Major, Op 10, No 3: Rondo
8. Sonata 30 In E Major, Op 109: Vivance . . Adagio
9. Sonata 30 In E Major, Op 109: Prestissimo
10. Sonata 30 In E Major, Op 109: Tema; Variazioni I - VI
11. Sonata 31 In A-flat Major, Op 110: Moderato
12. Sonata 31 In A-flat Major, Op 110: Allegro Molto
13. Sonata 31 In A-flat Major, Op 110: Adagio; Fuga

Product Description

Amazon.ca

Here's a disc that really throws down the gauntlet! Beethoven's late piano sonatas have an almost mythical reputation for sublime obscurity. That doesn't mean they don't get played, but rather that performers (and critics) tend to treat them with a seriousness not always supported by the music itself, which is frequently intimate, playful, and charming. In coupling two late sonatas with two earlier ones, Pratt demonstrates both the consistency of Beethoven's musical thought, and also makes a strong case for the late sonatas being far more approachable than most people think. He plays these two late works with the same sort of robust freshness and unaffected musicality that he lavishes on the two earlier ones, and the result is highly engaging. --David Hurwitz

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars What A Refreshing Performance Sept. 6 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
I have heard many recordings made by those considered the finest pianists, as well as having had first hand experience in hearing several of them in actual performance. All that I can honestly say is that, Awadagin Pratt may well be the closest thing to Franz List reborn as we are going to get in this life. He plays from the heart and is not simply a technical wizard as are so many of today's generation of pianists. His interpretation and artistic expression are warm, passionate and sophisticated. Also, I have read the comments made by some reviewers relative to their opinions. Some of them are more than kind but others seem to be looking for excuses to criticize. To them I would simply say that, when they can produce music of this caliber then they have the right to such comments. Regardless of motives, the evaluation of musical artistry should be left to performing artists.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing take on some obscure classics July 8 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Awadagin Pratt is one of the most unique and unconventional pianists out there today. He's not afraid to break or bend a few rules in order to give a fresh insight into a particular piece. This applies even when he takes on some of Beethoven's most obscure and less-performed sonatas. I cannot accurately describe exactly what he does with them, as I do not own the CD and have only listened to it a few times. What I can say is that his treatment is very complex, deep, and thoughtful, and it is like no other performance of Beethoven that you have ever heard. Check out the samples, try and find a friend that owns a copy, whatever, just listen and I guarantee that if you are a true classical music afficiando, you will find something to like. A neat and interesting take on some of Beethoven's most overlooked works!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Truly Wonderful Performance Aug. 24 2001
Format:Audio CD
The incomparable Awadagin Pratt did it again! This is truly a performance that leaves you slack-jawed in wonder. His incredible power and beautiful tone highlight the overall perfection of just about everything he plays. His fervent yet delicate emotions illustrate his obviously strong sense of the music's logic and meaning. All in all, it confirms this excellent impression: here is an artist who is not only enormously talented and creative, but also much more matured than his twenty-eight years age suggests. Pratt's rightful place in the vanguard of the world's greatest musicians is assured with every such magical performance.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! Nov. 7 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Acclaimed pianist Awadagin Pratt, known for his unorthodox style -- he sits on a bench very low to the floor. He also eschews the traditional tuxedo in favor of brightly colored shirts and gives the old masters something beyond the standard treatment. However, it's his splendid performance that really counts. His astonishing brilliance and beauty, the romance and lyricism, the incredible technique and prodigious talent, and his superb and imaginative repertoire transport listeners, levitating them into a spiritual dimension, where materials are immaterial.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Tsk tsk Oct. 13 2001
Format:Audio CD
Sadly, after repeated examination, it indeed appears that the soon-to-be 36-year-old Pratt indeed splices his recordings--i.e., he takes the best individual moments he can come up with to achieve superficial result. Personally, I prefer "honest" classical musicians when I listen to classical, as is generally the standard, though I suppose there may be those who simply want to hear what they want to hear for whatever reason.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Triumphant Free Spirit Nov. 8 2001
Format:Audio CD
Awadagin Pratt is a free spirit. Not only does he sport luxuriant dreadlocks and sit on a tiny stool, but he also played piano incredibly well. Pratt can do whatever he wants around the margins, because he rendered an intensely dramatic interpretation of these immortal pieces, with a distinctly improvisational air in the rhythms.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Refreshing Performance Sept. 12 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Awadagin is truly a virtuoso who performed these timeless classical pieces with such passion and energy. His technique is perfect and his power is peerless. I'm a big fan of the great legendary Russian pianist Sviatoslav Richter, and I think the performance of these pieces by Awadagin is definitely at the same level as Richter's.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Provocative and Beautiful Nov. 8 2001
Format:Audio CD
Mr. Pratt is an exceptional performer with a talent for stylizing within the most heatedly virtuosic material. His willful manipulation of tempos and dynamics, his varied articulation, as well as astonishing brilliance and energy, made for a provocative, electrifying performance.
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