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Image Camille Saint-Saëns: Piano Concertos 3, 4 & 5 'L'É
Jean-Jacques Kantorow and the Tapiola Sinfonietta have championed the music of Saint-Saëns on a series of acclaimed discs, and are now joined by the young Alexandre Kantorow –son of the conductor – for a survey of his works for piano and orchestra. In 1858, Saint-Saëns became the first major French composer to write a piano concerto, but on this first disc of two the Kantorows present the three last concertos. Composed over a period of almost 30 years (1868 – 1896), these are highly individual works: Piano Concerto No. 3 is a bold attempt to reconcile Classical form with a Lisztian pianistic brio, No. 4 employs an unusual formal scheme in which themes are reused in a cyclic manner and, finally, the ‘Egyptian’ (No. 5), named after the second movement, which in the composer’s own words describes ‘a sort of Eastern journey that goes all the way to the Far East’.

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Image Liszt:Piano Concertos
The two numbered concertos, which Franz Liszt revised extensively before letting them be published some 25 years after their conception, frame the single-movement Malédiction for piano and strings which Liszt composed in 1833 and revised in 1840, but which was never published in his lifetime. Stepping into Liszt's shoes for the present recording is Alexandre Kantorow. Born in 1997, Alexandre is here supported by his father Jean-Jacques Kantorow conducting the Tapiola Sinfonietta, a team with a number of highly acclaimed recordings to their credit. The recording is Alexandre's first for BIS, as well as being his début concerto disc, and represents a remarkable achievement by a hugely promising talent, as well as being a vibrant and exciting account of three impassioned scores.

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