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4.0 out of 5 stars EMIL GILELS majestic Brahms, glowing Debussy and fiery Prokofiev., 15 Sep 2012
This review is from: Debussy - Images/ Brahms - Piano Concerto/ Prokofiev - Piano Sonata (Emil Gilels/ Kolner Rundfunk Sinfonie-Orchester/ Mario Rossi) (ICA Classics: ICAC 5077) (Audio CD)
These Cologne broadcasts date from 1971 (Brahms concerto) and 1974 (Debussy and Prokofiev). Gilel's Brahms second piano concerto is notable for its majesty and grandeur set within a broad tempo. This performance is some 8 minutes longer than his 1958 version with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Fritz Reiner. Gilels could on occasion, especially in 'live' performances, sound highly strung and nervy resulting in smudged passages but here everything is well controlled and accurate. Perhaps the second movement is lacking a little in passionate drive and tension. The studio recording is at times somewhat resonant but this doesn't detract from the performance as a whole. Debussy's Image Bk.1 has glowing tone and in Reflets dans l'eau the rippling arpeggios are incandescent. Gilel's Prokofiev Sonata No.3 in A minor has plenty of fire and dash and the selection from Visions fugitives Op.22 are well characterised.
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