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John Ogdon - The Complete Rca Album Collection Box set


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Product details

  • Performer: John Ogdon
  • Audio CD (24 Mar. 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 6
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Sony Music Classical
  • ASIN: B00I4L172C
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 40,080 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Product Description

Sony Classical releases a six-disc original-jacket collection encompassing John Ogdon’s complete recordings for the RCA Victor label to mark the 25th anniversary of this legendary British pianist’s untimely death in 1989. Four LPs appear here for the first time on CD, while a 1972 Liszt recital is released for the first time outside of Japan. The six discs are packaged and programmed in facsimile reproductions of the original LP releases in a clamshell box with booklet and remastered from the original tapes.

The repertoire reflects different facets of Ogdon’s large-scale pianism and unusual musical proclivities. From an early age he displayed a passion for Liszt that never abated. His penchant for surmounting the piano repertoire’s most challenging edifices brilliantly manifests itself in Beethoven’s mighty “Hammerklavier” Sonata, Rachmaninoff’s two piano sonatas and the first complete recording of Alkan’s Concerto for Piano Solo. A disc featuring piano music by Carl Nielsen drew attention to this composer’s often undervalued keyboard output, as well as Ogdon’s lifelong curiosity about important works outside the central repertoire. Ogdon’s recording of Peter Mennin’s Piano Concerto and the first of two recordings he made of Richard Yardumian’s Passacaglia, Recitative and Fugue for piano and orchestra also represent the pianist’s fervent advocacy for the music of his time.



Set Contents:

DISC 1:
  • Nielsen: Chaconne op. 32
  • Suite Op. 45
  • Symphonic Suite, Op. 8
  • Three Piano Pieces, Op. 59

    DISC 2:
  • Rachmaninoff: Sonata No. 1 in D minor, Op. 28
  • Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 36

    DISC 3:
  • Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-Flat Major, Op. 106 "Große Sonate für das Hammerklavier"

    DISC 4:
  • Mennin: Piano Concerto
  • Yardumian: Passacaglia, Recitative and Fugue for Piano and Orchestra

    DISC 5:
  • Alkan: Concerto pour piano seul

    DISC 6:
  • Liszt: Rhapsodie Hongoroise No. 2 in C-sharp Minor (S.244)

  • Liszt: Mazeppa (Etude Defexecution transcendante S.139, No. 4)

  • Liszt: Feux follets (Etude Defexecution transcendante S.139, No. 5)

  • Liszt: La Campanelle (Grosse Etuden von Paganini S.141, No. 3)

  • Liszt: Au bord d'une Source (Annees de Pelerinage: Premiere Annee: Suisse S.160, No.4)

  • Liszt: Il Pensieroso (Annees de Pelerinage: Seconde Annee: Italie S.161, No. 2)

  • Liszt: Tarantella (Annees de Pelerinage: Supplement aux Seconde Annee: Venezia e Napoli S.162, No. 3)

  • Liszt: Grand Galop Chromatique S.219

  • Liszt: Mephisto-Walzer S.110
  • Customer Reviews

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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mr Swallow on 16 July 2014
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    I once heard John Ogdon in concert and came away most disappointed. But then I did not know of Ogdon's mental problems. These discs, however, were made before his breakdown when he was at the height of his considerable powers. There is some absolutely amazing playing here in the 'grand tradition'. Listen to the cascade of notes and the fury unleashed to be amazed! Some of the repertoire is decidedly off-centre as was Ogdon's wont but it is fantastically played. The performance of the Hammerklavier stands comparison with the best, in its own way. The slow movement is spellbinding. But this is no time for comparisons. Buy to hear an exceptional musician at somewhere near his volatile peak.
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    24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By John Fowler on 8 April 2014
    John Ogdon: The Gentle Giant.
    That's the title of an essay in the booklet (also "Der Sanfte Riese" and "Le doux geant").
    A cliche, but accurate as anything you will read about John Ogdon.

    In 1962, he was joint winner with Vladimir Ashkenazy of the Moscow Tchaikovsky Piano Competition.
    The previous winner was Van Cliburn,
    the Glamour Boy of Classical Music.
    A serious musician, Cliburn never quite recovered from his instant celebrity.

    John Ogdon was the anti-Glamour Boy: Overweight and Awkward.
    Teenage girls never swooned at his concerts.
    Worse yet, he suffered from an undiagnosed schizophrenia that would destroy his career in ten years.

    His career began and ended with EMI: John Ogdon: Legendary British Virtuoso , recordings 1960-1972. *
    There was a brief flirtation with RCA, which is documented in the new box from Sony.
    Five LP recordings - original jacket format with liner notes, recorded 1967-1969.
    Plus a sixth CD: an all-Liszt recital recorded in Tokyo in 1972, a few months before his mental breakdown. Previously unreleased.

    Ogdon had the reputation of an intellectual and a virtuoso, qualities that often don't go together.
    He specialised in contemporary music, and music of a gargantuan nature: Ronald Stevenson's 80 minute Passacaglia on DSCH, and the Busoni Piano Concerto.
    You will have to go to EMI for those.

    The repertoire in the Sony/RCA box is a bit tamer:
    - Beethoven: Hammerklavier Sonata - back in 1967, Late Beethoven was a Big Deal, the province of old masters.
    Nowadays every young pianist plays the Hammerklavier Sonata.
    Read more ›
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    8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Neil Ford on 8 Jun. 2014
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    The legendary performance of Rachmaninov's unjustly neglected first sonata is finally available on CD. Thought by many to be the finest account of this challenging work, Ogdon has sweep and power, poetry and nuance that few pianists can deliver and mould into a monumental performance such as this one. I don't find the sonata over long and Ogdon's magnetic power never falters.

    The Alkan I think was released on a Great Pianists disc but it's good to have it included in this set. A monumental work of almost insane technical and challenges is perfect fodder for the Ogdon genius. A few bumps and glitches from Ogdon barely register in the bigger picture. What's very striking beyond the superhuman virtuosity is the lyricism and beauty the pianists finds in this music. IT really does stick in the mind!

    As for the concertos I found the Mennin piece to be overly motoric thin on material yet Ogdon plays with total conviction. I've not yet got round to the Yardumian.

    Good to have all of Ogdon's Nielson LP here. Some very fine and individual music as you'd expect from the Danish master. Ogdon plays with masterly authority in what amounts to a particularly satisfying recital of music that deserves to be heard more often. The Beethoven Hammerklavier was a favourite of Ogdon's, a work he had played from the beginning of his career. It's a particularly cohesive and persuasive account of this huge sonata. Ogdon was a prolific composer and you this brings special insights to the sonata particularly in the last movement.

    The Liszt recital from 1972 is a mixed bag. Some heroic playing but marred occasionally by scrambled and rushed playing. Still we hear some works new to the Ogdon Liszt discography and much of the playing is thrilling and heroic,

    At bargain price this box is thoroughly recommended and will be no doubt be snapped up by Ogdon fans!
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    4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By n raggett on 5 Jun. 2014
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    I did have these cds on vinyl but couldn't resist the offer of this box set excellent value, great pianist
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    8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A. G. Williams on 10 May 2014
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    If you're considering buying this CD, go right ahead as it is absolutely fantastic. Played it the other night for some music-loving friends and they were absolutely 'blown away' The Liszt cd is 'something else' Also the Nielsen CD is also fantastic!
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    7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Clerkenwell Reader on 8 May 2014
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    A beautiful collection. Worth every penny. Shows John Ogdon's range and exquisite talents. The CD collection is nicely packaged with the original CD covers.
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    Brilliantly exciting virtuosic playing - perhaps a little too excited at times - but wonderful. A great record of the playing of a genius. Some pieces I had never heard before.
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