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Chopin: Nocturnes and Preludes (Complete)

Adam Harasiewicz , Chopin , n/a Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: £7.67 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Conductor: n/a
  • Composer: Chopin
  • Audio CD (12 Nov 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Brilliant
  • ASIN: B000RPBYOE
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 113,588 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

Nocturnes (Intégrale) & Préludes op.28 / Adam Harasiewicz, piano

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ravishing disc, amazing bargain 23 Nov 2012
Verified Purchase
Adam Harasiewicz's 1961 recording of the complete Nocturnes is quite simply the best. Maybe it shouldn't be a competition, but you can forget Rubinstein, Ashkenazy etc as far as I'm concerned. This has rarely been out of my CD player since I bought it and if it was an LP it would already be starting to wear out. Harasiewicz combines a wonderful sense of detail with a great command of overall structure. He's served by excellent recording quality which shows its age not at all. This is intimate playing of the highest order, music seductively whispered in your ear. Add the complete Preludes as well, on Disc 2, and all for under a fiver - what more could you want?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite performance 30 May 2012
By Mhr
Verified Purchase
Adam Harasiewicz is not well-known. A Polish pianist, he gained prominence when he won the first prize at the 5th International Chopin Piano Competition in 1955. (Vladimir Ashkenazy came in the second.) He made recordings of Chopin's works in the 1950s and 60s, but appears to have faded as a concert pianist since then, although I understand he was on the jury for the above piano competition for a long time.

Having read about his recordings recently while surfing the net, I bought the above 2-CD set of Nocturnes and Preludes. I really like his exquisite and straight-forward style; he hardly has any mannerisms unlike some eminent pianists who often use rubato to make points.

I've always enjoyed listening to recordings of Nocturnes by Rubinstein and Pires; their performances are first-rate. But, Harasiewicz is equally - if not more - superb in interpreting these works which are meditative in character and gentle in pace. He brings out the works' atmosphere and languid feeling very well.

Preludes are also played beautifully, although I still like Lugansky's version (in excellent digital recording) best.

The mono recording, originally made in 1961, has been re-mastered very well, although the sound quality is inevitably below that of up-to-date digital recordings. This re-packaged Brilliant Classics version is slightly cheaper than the earlier Philips Duo version. This will be an excellent addition to archives of lovers of Chopin's music.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Adam Harasiewicz with Chopin Nocturnes and Preludes 14 April 2013
By Mr. Mark A. Meldon TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
I have a copy of the Chopin Nocturnes from this 2-CD release in the "Cube" that Brilliant Classics released a few years ago Chopin - The Complete Works; the set here re-releases Adam Harasiewicz's Philips recordings of Chopin's Nocturnes and Op.28 Preludes made between 1961 and 1963, having once been available as a "Duo" set Chopin: The 21 Nocturnes; The 26 Préludes. As the late American critic Bernard H Haggin once wrote:-

"...Chopin made a great art of writing small poetic pieces for the piano. I speak, I should say, of the music scraped clean of a hundred years' encrustation of performers' affected, mannered phrasing that has made it seem sentimental and morbid".

Adam Harasiewicz is, I think, one of the few living Chopin players (he was born in 1932 in Poland) who avoids Haggin's "encrustations", yet he is near-forgotten. He made one of the first "complete" sets of Chopin's works in the late 1950s and 1960s for Philips, and the engineers caught his wonderful performances in particularly beautiful sound. This is, as Haggin recommended, "scraped-clean" Chopin.

Along with Vladimir Ashkenazy's earlier Decca recordings, these two inexpensive CDs contain some of the best Chopin playing I have ever heard, and the set is an absolute steal!
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