This is the most fascinating programme of Bolet as teacher and performer. Made in the BBC Studios with a small audience, the interviewer gets Bolet to talk about Godowsky then demonstrate the difference between Chopin and Godowsky’s version of the three pieces to be played
Alfred Cortot was a supreme interpreter of Chopin – he studied with the composer’s pupil Émile Descombes – and fortunately he left us many recordings made over the course of several decades.
Among his most significant contributions to recorded music are his stupendous accounts of Chopin’s Etudes, his expansive, creative interpretations taking these works well beyond the realm of technical studies to reveal their rich musical content.
“Midnight Pieces’ is a project presenting 53 beautiful works from 53 composers (originally meant as one piece for each week of the year, plus one) – music, that is just perfect for night-time listening.
The pieces follow a hidden pattern: within each consecutive 4 works one is famous, one is by a Russian composer, one is obscure work and one is a transcription by yours truly. These categories mix and match sometimes, but overall there are iconic and less-known pieces by well-known composers, quite a bit of breathtaking pieces by obscure composers and several world premieres of my transcriptions of rare and famous works of different authors. I felt a need to fight the general fascination of the general audience with piano pieces that are primarily virtuosic encores (Volodos Turkish March etc), and wanted to create a project that fulfills the desire for aesthetic pleasure, for beauty of the music itself. It doesn’t mean there is no virtuosity there – there is plenty, but not as the main point at all.”
Asiya Korepanova and Pianists Corner offer you a weekly rendezvous. Each rendezvous will contain 4 pieces.
The composers :
“Based on a Moravian folk melody, Leoš Janaček’s unusual and irresistibly sincere piece “Good Night!” almost makes us see a Milky Way passing by our eyes. The motif is so simple but provides a profound sense of depth, where twinkling light surpasses darkness. It somehow reminds me of Schumann’s Child Falling Asleep, there is definitely a shared sentiment between these two pieces!” A.K.
“Originally composed for cello and piano, the Elegie by Gabriel Fauré means the world to me. Not only is this one of those rare examples when sorrow becomes ecstatic, it is also the very first piano transcription I have ever written. Having a sentimental attachment to this music, I always wanted to be able to play it by myself; and I am so happy I can do it anytime now!” A.K.
“Painted with transparent yet rich sounding colors, this Nocturne by Russian composer Anton Arensky is a part of his collection of 24 piano pieces, Op.36. It is Chopinesque, elegant, and still maintains the Russian character and flow. I just could not take my hands away from it, as well as from the rest of the works in this collection!” A.K.
“Written by Chopin when he was just 11 years old, this little Polonaise displays an astonishing palette of colors and offers sentiments that are far beyond the composer’s age. In Russia, this polonaise is very often played by children before they “graduate’ to perform the big Chopin Polonaises – it teaches young players to hold the structure of the piece together, to be able to find subtle differences in repeats and to be as poetic as possible.” A.K.
Outtakes from the documentary “Memories of John Browning: The Lhevinne Legacy Continues” (2006). The American pianist John Browning (1933-2003) explains and demonstrates some principles in piano playing as they were taught by Josef & Rosina Lhévinne.
At the end he plays Chopin‘s Nocturne In D flat major, Opus 27 no. 2.