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Schubert: Richter Plays Live [Sviatoslav Richter] [Melodiya: MELCD 1002231] Box set


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Schubert: Richter Plays Live [Sviatoslav Richter] [Melodiya: MELCD 1002231] + The Art of Sviatoslav Richter + Mstislav Rostropovich - Legendary Recordings
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Product details

  • Conductor: None
  • Composer: Franz Schubert
  • Audio CD (28 April 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Melodia
  • ASIN: B00J587KHO
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 65,415 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Moderato
2. Allegretto
3. Scherzo. Allegro Vivace
4. Rondo, D506
5. Allegro
See all 11 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Molto Moderato E Cantabile
2. Andante
3. Menuetto. Allegro Moderato
4. Allegretto
5. Moderato
See all 7 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Allegro Ma Non Troppo
2. Andante
3. Scherzo. Allegretto
4. Allegro Giusto
5. Allegro
See all 8 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Scherzo No. 2 in D Flat Major, D593
2. Andante in a Major, D604
3. 4 Landlers, D366
4. Allegretto in C Minor, D915
5. No. 1 in C Major: Moderato
See all 13 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Product Description

"The first time I heard him play was at the Moscow Conservatory in May 1957, and he opened his programme with the last of Schubert's sonatas. It's a very long sonata, one of the longest ever written, in fact, and Richter played it at the slowest tempo I've ever heard. I think at this point it's appropriate to confess … I'm not really addicted to most of Schubert's music. I find myself unable to come to terms with the repetitive structure, and I get very restless and squirm when I have to sit through one of the longer Schubert essays. What happened was that, for the next hour, I was in a state that I can only compare to a hypnotic trance. All my prejudices about Schubert's repetitive structures were forgotten. Musical details which I'd previously considered ornamental were given the appearance of organic elements. In fact, I can remember many of those details to this day. It seemed to me that I was witnessing a union of two supposedly irreconcilable qualities. Intense analytical calculation revealed through a spontaneity akin to improvisation. And I realized at that moment, as I have on many subsequent occasions while listening to Richter's recordings, I was in the presence of one of the most powerful communicators the world of music has produced in our time" (Glenn Gould).

Firma Melodiya has compiled its first album for the 100th anniversary of Sviatoslav Teofilovich Richter from works by Franz Schubert, a composer whose music accompanied Sviatoslav Richter throughout his artistic career (he learnt the Wanderer Fantasie before he entered the conservatory, and the Sonata in five parts, D. 459, was the last piece that Richter worked on in his country house at the end of July 1997 and hoped to play during the forthcoming concert season). The set includes complete phonograms of the concertos of 02.05.1978 (for the 90th anniversary of Heinrich Neuhaus) and 18.10.1978 (for the 150th anniversary of Franz Schubert's death), encores from the concert of 03.05.1978 (the basic programme was similar to that of 02.05.1978), and also the H-Dur sonata (from the concert of 08.06.1979, its second part was dedicated to Sergei Prokofiev's music (pleased refer to Mel CD 10 01677) and the c-moll sonata from the concert of 06.10.1971.

Ever meticulous about the issues of form of a piece (in particular, he would rigorously perform all the repetitions indicated by the author), Sviatoslav Richter not only performed Schubert's short pieces (landlers, écossaises) in succession, in the order specified by the composer, but after choosing the most congenial of them compiled peculiar miniature suites, sometimes making any other piece adjacent to them. The examples are the suites from the A-Dur piece and four landlers of 02.05.1978, and the suites played as an encore at the concert of 18.10.1978. A listener may also pay attention to the evolution of the form of the E minor sonata, D. 566. The sonata was not finished by Schubert as a whole multi-movement work and is actually a set of individual pieces connected with tonal correlations, a figurative structure and the time when they were composed. In 1953, Richter performed a single-movement version of the sonata. However, later on in the 1950's, he performed a two-movement version (a comparison with Beethoven's sonata, Op. 90, inevitably comes to mind). Afterwards, the form grew larger when Richter added the third movement (Scherzo. Allegro vivace), and the fourth one by the 1970's (Rondo. Allegro molto. D. 506) thus performing the version of Paul Badura-Skoda. The sonata is featured in this set twice, as a three- and four-movement version.

Review

'a wonderful, sometimes magical set [...] Richter's genius could find musical truth and beauty on the smallest as well as the largest scale.' --Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 30th July 2014

'Richter performs with a combination of delicacy and powerful address' --Rob Cowan, Gramophone, Awards Issue 2014

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Churley on 11 May 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Even if you have other performances of Richter playing these Schubert sonatas this set is still worth buying. Richter seems more relaxed on home turf in Moscow than at other venues such as London and Tokyo where he performed most of the same works, and his playing has that extra element of flexibility, spontaneity, risk and fire. The early sonatas and D958 are especially fine. The great G major sonata D894 is taken a little quicker than his Aldeburgh performance and lacks a little of the fierce concentration of that performance which for me is his greatest interpretation of that sonata (and a musical landmark). But overall this is a 'must have' of Richter on top form in recordings that have never been issued before to my knowledge.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Philo London on 10 Oct 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I'll keep this review short - there are lengthy reviews concerning venues and recording details elsewhere. I would simply say that although I have dozens of recordings of Richter already, including Denon-issued stuff from Japanese performances of Schubert at Suntory Hall and Budokan, and quite good Schubert recordings from the Salzburg Festival too, this set came as a very nice surprise. The sound is pretty decent, not the best but you forget that once the performances take you over. The playing is wonderful throughout and I'm really delighted with the whole set, it's a bargain at this price and an example of Richter pretty much at his inimitable best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Peter Vergo on 22 Oct 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
There are some incredible performances here, and this is a real treasury of otherwise unobtainable recordings of live recitals given by Richter, for the most part in Moscow. There are a few oddities on the discs, including a couple of unfinished sonatas. While Schubert's Unfinished Symphony is famous, nobody warns you that the first movement of sonata D625 simply stops in the middle of a bar, while D566 is here performed in two different versions, depending on whether you believe the composer intended adding a final fourth movement - or not, as the case may be. Disc 4 consists largely of odd movements that Schubert might - or again, might not - have intended to be constituent parts of otherwise uncompleted sonatas, while the three Moments musicaux (why only three?) are among the least satisfactory performances on this disc. But all this is irrelevant. Magisterial, gripping, breath-taking performances of sonatas D664 and D894 (in the latter, Richter sounding almost as if he is playing the hushed opening of the first movement while in the grip of some visionary, trance-like state) would, even on their own, justify the relatively modest price of this four-disc set. They are old Russian recordings from the Melodiya stable; nevertheless, the sound is perfectly acceptable. But be prepared for a bit of audience noise - and, of course, rapturous applause! In live performance, Richter had an inimitable way of casting a magic spell on his audience; it is rather wonderful that evidence of that extraordinary gift has been preserved for the rest of us to enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Claus Byrith on 3 Nov 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This Richter issue is most wonderful. I have been a fan of him for many, many years, and this Schubert live-album from Moscow shows him at his very best. His poetic readings ar simply unparalled and the set is a must for Schubert lovers too. Do not hesitate, buy it!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Changsoo RYU on 4 Sep 2014
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excellent deal highly recommended
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