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KABALEVSKY: Piano Concertos, Vol. 2


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Kabalevsky belonged to the middle generation of Soviet-Russian composers whose careers became a search for a style that could achieve some sort of modus vivendi with the requirements of Stalin's 'Socialist Realism'. Accessibility, tunefulness, clear-cut forms, optimistic expression, a traditional orientation towards the great Russian classics of the nineteenth century - these were the kinds of quality expected by the Soviet establishment. Kabalevsky came to enjoy a successful and uncontroversial career, although he found himself at the receiving end of accusations of 'formalism', which he hardly deserved for his was a skilfully crafted type of expression, drawing on the spirit of folk-melody, and quite free from 'modernism'. His temperament and relative musical conservatism enabled Kabalevsky, unlike other Soviet composers such as Shostakovich and Prokofiev, to serve the Stalinist regime without painful compromise. His adherence to principles of Socialist Realism, however, should not detract from the very real worth of works that are superbly crafted, overflowing with a natural joie de vivre and of real, substance.

Symphony No. 2 proved to be the most successful of his three early essays in the genre - indeed, the only one of his four symphonies to establish itself in the orchestral repertoire, both at home and abroad. This is an accessible, fluently composed work - very much in the spirit of Russian folk nationalism - and the first movement has been compared with the first movement of Tchaikovsky's Path?®tique Symphony. The piano concertos are highly contrasting representations of Kabalevsky's oeuvre but both are written in a direct and accessible style, clearly inspired by Rachmaninov and Prokofiev.

The previous volume was well received:
\Stott plays both concertos with aplomb but also with an understandable wariness of their superficiality, coaxing out their lyricism but playing down their brilliance..."
Fanfare on CHAN 10052 , Piano Concertos Nos 2 and 3."
Facts
Item number CHAN 10384
Barcode 095115138427
Release date 09/01/2006
Category 20th Century
Label Chandos Records
Media type CD
Number of units 1
Performers
Artists Stott, Kathryn
Composers Kabalevsky, Dmitry Borisovich
Conductors Jarvi, Neeme
Orchestras BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Disc: 1
Piano Concerto No. 4, Op. 99, "Prague"
1 I. Moderato quasi andantino
2 II. Tema: Moderato -
3 II. Variation 1: L'istesso tempo -
4 II. Variation 2: Allegro assai - Andante -
5 II. Variation 3: Andante - Poco piu mosso -
6 II. Variation 4: ( - ) - Vivace - Piu mosso - Temp
7 II. Variation 5: Funebre (Tempo di marcia moderato
8 II. Coda: Tempo di tema -
9 III. Vivace marcato
10 I. Allegro quasi presto
11 II. Andante non troppo
12 III. Prestissimo scherzando
13 I. Allegro molto e energico - Meno mosso: Improvis
14 II. Molto sostenuto: Improvisato - Molto espressiv
15 III. Vivo - Piu mosso: Con brio
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