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Resonances


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Biography

Hélène Grimaud – A Biographical Timeline
“This is one of the most intriguing yet bewildering recitals I have encountered in a long time. At her fines Hélène Grimaud is a truly remarkable artist capable of transcending the piano’s essentially percussive nature to create magical worlds of tonal half-lights and ecstatic vocal ... Read more in Amazon's Hélène Grimaud Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Resonances + Bach: Transcriptions + Brahms: Piano Concertos
Price For All Three: £31.40

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Product details

  • Audio CD (25 Oct. 2010)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Deutsche Grammophon
  • ASIN: B00408MS0S
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 129,711 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Piano Sonata No.8 In A Minor, K.310 - 1. Allegro Maestoso 7:54£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Piano Sonata No.8 In A Minor, K.310 - 2. Andante Cantabile Con Espressione10:21£1.49  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Piano Sonata No.8 In A Minor, K.310 - 3. Presto 2:55£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Piano Sonata, Op.1 - Mässig Bewegt - Langsames Tempo - Quasi Adagio11:36£1.49  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Piano Sonata In B Minor, S.178 - Lento Assai - Allegro Energico - Grandioso - Recitativo - Andante Sostenuto - Quasi Adagio - Allegro Energico - Più Mosso - Stretta Quasi Presto - Presto-Prestissimo -30:12£3.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Bartók: 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 1. Stick Dance 1:09£0.39  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Bartók: 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 2. Sash Dance0:28£0.39  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Bartók: 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 3. Stamping Dance 1:05£0.39  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 4. Dance Of Buchum 1:22£0.39  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Bartók: 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 5. Roumanian Polka0:29£0.39  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Bartók: 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68, Sz. 56 - 6. Fast Dance0:59£0.39  Buy MP3 

Product Description

The pianist, Hélène Grimaud, has conceived another programme of works spanning a wide range of emotions and styles, yet all linked by their origin in that singular musical line of succession: the great composers of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Her new album bears the title Résonance, reflecting Grimaud’s imaginative approach to this stimulating compilation of masterpieces.

Hélène Grimaud brings all her artistic maturity and a perfect balance between intellect and emotion to bear on the highly dramatic sonatas by Mozart – the A minor K.310 – Liszt and Berg, leavened by Bartók’s irresistible Romanian Folk Dances

For Grimaud the keystone here is Alban Berg’s hyper-charged, ultra-romantic Opus 1. In this highly concentrated work, the fascinating interrelationships, resonances, between the composers and pieces are summarized and condensed. “This is a music drama in the miniature form of a single-movement sonata,” comments Grimaud, “a maximum of expression that seems to emanate directly from the heart – contained within a piece of incredibly clear structure.”

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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By film fan VINE VOICE on 26 Nov. 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Being released in 2010, I found this album to be a lot nicer and richer than her previous album of Bach. I was pleasantly surprised about this album as I didn't know what to expect from this brilliant and stunning pianist. To me, this album comprising of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Alban Berg, Franz Liszt and Bela Bartok feels more polished and more rounded an album than the previous one. For me, the highlights of this album are the Piano Sonata No.8 in A minor K.310 from Mozart and the Piano Sonata op.1 from Alban Berg.

Although I now possess her last 4 albums, I find Helene Grimaud a fascinating and a really exciting pianist and find that she gets a whole lot of emotion and passion from her piano playing making some great musical notes and phrases. This puts her back on the kind of form she showed with her album of the majestic and epic Beethoven Emperor Suite she recorded back in 2007. A welcome return to her outstanding and wonderful best. Bravo.
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1 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Bernard Michael O'Hanlon on 22 Sept. 2013
Format: Audio CD
Decidedly, I am not the man to comment on HG's performance of Berg's Sonata. Within my parameters, I enjoyed her traversal of Liszt's B Minor Sonata (I do not understand why anyone would describe this noisy, clapped out warhorse as the main event in light of another inclusion): could one suggest that such a domain is her sweet-spot? Bartok's SZ 56 was new to me: I was pleasantly surprised. What music it is! As far as I can tell, Grimaud's advocacy is superlative.

That brings me, however, to the real test: Mozart's Sonata in A Minor, K 310, written in Paris upon the death of his mother.

Aeschylus tells us this: "He who learns must suffer. And even in our sleep, pain that we cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God."

Lipatti bears witness to this. He recorded K 310 with mere days left on the clock; he knew it in his bones: the rest is silence. Alexei Lubimov, it's fair to say, is as fugly as they come; his Hubble-like spectacles add to the onslaught; nor is there any need to relay that notorious episode where his beard caught fire on stage. Suffice to say, he too fathoms the depths of K 310. And is there any need to cite Gilels or Richter?

I know little of Helene Grimaud other than the fact that she likes animals (tick) and annoys Count Claudio Abbado the Impaler (elephant star). She's been feted since her youth. A contract with DG is hers. And she is ever so stylish.

But playing music fierily or softly and slowly is not to be equated with profundity. Come the big moments in K 310 - the development in the first movement, and the recapitulations in both the Andante and the Presto, Grimaud is found wanting. How shallow this is!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 10 reviews
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Grimaud strides ahead with "big" Mozart and mesmerizing Liszt 26 Jan. 2011
By Santa Fe Listener - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Anyone who knows Grimaud's strong musical personality won't be surprised that she attacks Mozart with the same passion as Beethoven. Still, it's been decades since I've heard a pianist approach the A minor Sonata K. 310 as if it literally was Beethoven. You have to banish all thought of tinkly period performance. Grimaud makes the sonata sound as big and stormy as Beethoven's 'Tempest' sonata. She employs all the resources of a concert grand to dramatize the first movement, and then she releases us into the lyrical reflections of the second movement with telling contrast. I've tended to find her phrasing somewhat too arbitrary in the past -- it was really only Grimuad's early recordings on Denon that I admired -- but here I'm very sympathetic to her instincts, which are highly personal, in the vein of Mikhail Pletnev, another artist who can infuriate his critics.

Her individual touch works very well in two modernist works, the Berg Sonata Op. 1, which sounds suitably restless and brooding, and Bartok's Six Romanian Folk Dances, where her fervor is striking, along with her mastery of Bartok's off-kilter rhythms. Sandwiched in between them is the main event, the Liszt B minor Sonata. There is always a steady stream of virtuosos ready to prove their mettle in this work, the latest being Yuja Wang, also on DG. Pianists approach Liszt either as poets or steel fingers. Krystian Zimerman and Maurizio Pollini meld the two sides, and I felt that Wang came quite close, too. The secret isn't to strike a compromise, though, but to have something engrossing to say.

Grimaud gets off on the right foot by phrasing the well-trod staccato chords with a real sense of mystery and atmosphere; nothing is detached or perfunctory. We are off on a story, which she tells passionately. Unity can be a problem in this piece, and the line can sever if the performer takes small missteps in timing. Grimaud takes the music by the nape of the neck and never relents in her forward drive. The high drama of her conception is greatly aided by a beautiful instrument that is superbly recorded by DG -- I doubt that I have ever heard better. My only real criticism is that there tends to be a certain sameness to her fervent, improvisational approach that shortchanges emotional variety here and there. Too much brilliance can subtract from the overall experience after a while.

As far as technique goes, the wow factor is very high. The product description tells us that Grimaud (who has recently been plagued by exhaustion and chronic health problems) is taking his program on a world tour. One anticipates that it will be a triumph -- this disc certainly is.
57 of 74 people found the following review helpful
A SPECIAL RECORDING 2 Nov. 2010
By victor n. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a very special artist. Beware of pundits who spend an inordinate effort dismissing her. They doth protest too much. Grimaud is a life force to be reckoned with and those who belittle her from without are most probably at war from within and projecting their conflict on to her. (See Villagem regarding her recording of Bach.) She will not be all things to all people of course, but such is the nature of those who take a stand.

I had the good fortune of hearing her play this program in person in Frankfurt in early October. As good as the CD is, the live performance was even better so I very much recommend hearing her in person if you a chance.

This is a wonderfully conceived program delving into the cultural crosscurrents of the Austro-Hungarian empire steadily moving eastward from Mozart to Bartok. Throughout, the human voice permeates the music which is otherwise rooted in an existential intensity that reflects Grimaud's musical essence. This is especially true in the performances of Berg and Liszt. In the first it cries through the cacophony of atonality connecting one to the spectrum of moods and struggles so characteristic of the modern condition on its deepest and most plaintive level. This is followed by the immense emotional journey of Liszt's sonata in B minor. As cogent as the performance on the CD is, I could swear that in her live performance she took the liberty to extend the pause between the repeated notes on the opening refrain when it is revisited about two thirds of the way into the piece just before the fugue section begins. A shame she did not include this interpretation in the recording as it provided an absolutely riveting sense of drama and suspense - to have so much pyrotechnics juxtaposed with this simple note by note almost desultory yet supremely profound musical line. She received an immediate standing ovation from much of the audience for this performance. The Mozart is performed admirably it would seem to me though I am not really a Mozart fan. What provides a fascinating comparison, however, is how the thematic musical line in its last movement finds its unexpected analog in the Berg sonata allowing insight into the comparative contexts of each artist's historical period - such similar ideas with such different expressive content - one expressing a type of heroic romanticism and the latter a most plaintive - almost stumbling - existential search. At the end, the Bartok Roumanian Dances arrive providing a chance to sit back and relax - but only just a little bit as the performance is vintage Grimaud intense. The musical crosscurrents from the east are allowed to infiltrate the western idiom and sing their vibrant communal song bringing us all back together again after our lonely life-review searches have left us - oh - just a tad exhausted.

For this demanding program Grimaud's technique is more than up to the task. But, more importantly, her playing bridges connections and assists the listener in bridging these connections as well - an experience for which I am truly grateful. Overall I consider the performances on this CD to be on another level compared to what I am otherwise likely to hear.

I give this recording a full 5 stars.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A Rich Spectrum of Works for the Piano: The Art of Hélène Grimaud 26 April 2011
By Grady Harp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Hélène Grimaud continues to amaze her audiences in orchestral concerts and recitals. She appears a delicate flower, but the energy she pours into her performances is astonishing - and always in keeping with the composers' works she performs. In this particular album she is at her most versatile. Few pianists would dare create a program this challenging, but Hélène Grimaud always takes a step beyond the norm, so programming Mozart with Berg with Liszt and Bartok may seem strange to some, but listen to the approach she uses with each of these challenging pieces and her genius will be substantiated.

She opens with Mozart's Piano Sonata No.8 in A minor and brings more sound and substance to this work than we are used to hearing. This she follows by Alban Berg's exigent Piano Sonata, Op.1 and plays it with such clarity of line that it seems simple. Franz Liszt, the mighty Hungarian, is represented by the frequently performed Piano Sonata in B minor, one of the challenges many pianists like to include on programs because of the virtuosity it demands from the artist. In Grimaud's hands and mind the work is not only comprehensible but also magnificently beautiful. She completes this recital (for that is what this CD must surely be) with another Hungarian composer, Béla Bartók, finding all the lilt and freedom in his 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, BB 68.

Grimaud's pianist colors are always clear, focused, and yet full of passion. She is a one of today's very finest musicians, both technically and intellectually. And this album of strange bedfellows is an exceptional success! Grady Harp, April 11
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A Must 29 Jan. 2011
By S. Dimond - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Grimaud is a poet and provocateur. She does not "create" poetry with her music, per se, but in the physical play of her work she embodies it. She does what I think few successful, world-class artists do: provoke the listener with artistic evocation, technically brilliant invocation, and a conceptual/intellectual vibrancy. Her work is not about perfecting a tradition, but within the tradition she opens new pathways to the music--with the concerns and technical possibilities of today--while retaining an essential integrity with the tradition that has carried a work forward.

I love this album, and think Grimaud is one of the more vital, essential artists working today in any discipline.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Resonances: A remarkable example of keyboard artistry 11 April 2011
By King Arthur - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Grimaud has complete control of her keyboard. Whether fortissimo or pianissimo, or Alban Berg's vague Maesig bewegt, Ms. Grimaud has everything under control. Her tempi, her touch, her ability to turn notes on a page into a joy to the ear and a pleasure to the soul, are indicia of her mastery of the art form she has chosen to represent her considerable skills as an artiste. I especially enjoyed her performance of Mozart's effervescent Piano Sonata No. 8 in A Minor. The First Movement, Allegro maestoso, is played with fervor, fire, flash at a sizzling speed. This piece is played several times in the film, Room With A View, to underline the mixed amorous emotions of the heroine.
The two remaining Movements are played with equal skills in shadings of tone. I'm not a fan of Alban Berg. I suppose because I don't understand him. But Ms. Grimaud's playing of Berg's Piano Sonato, Opus i, began to open some doors for me. Perhaps, with more playing of this CD I'll begin to understand her love for Berg and for this work. Liszt's Piano Sonata in B Minor is classic Liszt: fire and fury and then some touching lento portions. Unless you can control Liszt he'll run away from you, making everything sound like bombast. Ms. Grimaud has Liszt under control. The Liszt Sonata is 30 minutes in length. But I didn't notice the passage of time. I was so riveted to the Work that time's passage played no part in my appreciation of Ms. Grimaud's performance. Bela Bartok is not one of my favorite composers. Again because I don't understand his use of tonalities. Ms. Grimaud played some of Bartok's Rumanian folk dances. To my surprise I liked them! Thank you, Helene, for opening more musical doors for me. Arthur Stanley Katz, King Arthur
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