- Audio CD (July 15 2003)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Telarc
- ASIN: B000003CXS
- Other Editions: Audio CD
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #169,753 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Malcolm Frager Plays Chopin
|1. Polonaise for piano No. 6 in A flat major ('Héroique'), Op. 53, CT. 155|
|2. Andante spianato and Grande Polonaise for piano & orchestra, Op. 22|
|3. Variations brillantes on 'Je vends des scapulaires' from Hérold's Ludovic, for piano in B flat major, Op. 12, CT. 226|
|4. Mazurkas (4) for piano, Op. 6, CT. 51-54|
|5. Contredanse for piano in G flat major, KK. Anh.Ia/4 (B. 84) (spurious)|
|6. Tarantelle for piano in A flat major, Op. 43, CT. 205|
|7. Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, CT. 203: I. Allegro maestoso|
|8. Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, CT. 203: II. Scherzo: Molto vivace|
|9. Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, CT. 203: III. Largo|
|10. Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, CT. 203: IV. Finale: Presto non tanto|
The late Malcolm Frager was one of America's greatest pianists. He was trained by his teacher Carl Friedberg--pupil of Clara Schumann and friend of Brahms--in the great Romantic tradition. In this superb, wide-range digital recording, Frager plays some of Chopin's best-known music with color and poetic expression. In the opening two Polonaises, Frager handles the virtuosic demands unobtrusively, making beautiful music even out of the glittery difficulties of the Grande Polonaise. The Sonata receives a heroic performance, with touching playing of the long largo. This disc is a wonderful souvenir of a great artist who deserves to be remembered by all pianophiles. --Leslie Gerber
Top Customer Reviews
This recording made waves more than a decade ago when it was one of the first to take advantage of Telarc's state-of-the-art digital recording process. On an LP, it challenged many styli to stay on-track during the lowest keys of the Tarantelle. (Telarc used this recording as a test track for audiophile equipment.) On CD, it still ranks among the best recordings in a now technically stringent industry.
But that's just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. This CD's success lies in its two main stars: Malcolm Frager and the Bösendorfer Imperial Concert Grand Piano. Frager gives a truly remarkable performance of Chopin. His selected pieces provide a rich sampling of what the composer has done for the piano. I particularly loved his rendition of Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise-a work not often included in many repertoires. And the Bösendorfer (considered the "Rolls Royce" of pianos) sounds astounding-crisp, sweet treble and clear, resonant bass. This piano should really be featured in more recordings.
cd is the best exemple I have in my collection.
Hifi sound on Telarc digital.
The playing from Malcolm Frager is also Master level. Don't miss it!!!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com
Malcolm Frager rendition is masterly, of course
I notice some difference in the tone the CD sound brither and the low notes of the Bösendorfer some what subdued
Over all Magnificent.
About the playing, all the aching beauty and melancholy that is Chopin is practically gone. We are left with mostly muscular pounding and speed. This is almost caricature playing. The breathtaking rubato and soul of a Rubinstein, Arrau, or Ohlsson is nowhere to be heard. The interpretation is a Beethoven style Teutonic fortissimo in many places where it does not belong at all. Surely, with all due respect, Chopin is not Mr. Frager's forte. Compare this Andante Spianato and Grand Polonaise to Garrick Ohlsson's on volume 14 of "Chopin the Complete Works", truly an outstanding version in both playing and piano sound.
This is not a disc I would recommend to anyone trying to get acquainted with Chopin's glorious music. For that I would highly recommend the above mentioned three. This is mostly a novelty recording of Telarc's abandoned close-miking technique of a beautiful concert grand by Bosendorfer.