SCARLATTI: Sonata in B minor, K. 87. Sonata in E, K. 380. Sonata in E, K. 135. SCHUMANN: Kreisleriana, Op. 16. Träumerei. LISZT: Valse caprice d'après Schubert No. 6 from Soirées de Vienne. Valse oubliée No. 1 in F sharp. RACHMANINOFF: Prelude in G, Op. 32 No. 5. Prelude in G sharp minor, Op. 32 No. 12. SCRIABIN: Etude in C sharp minor, Op. 2 No. 1. Etude in D sharp minor, Op. 8 No. 2. LISZT: Sonetto del Petrarca No. 104 - No. 5. CHOPIN: Mazurka in A minor, Op. 17 No. 4. Mazurka in F minor, Op. 7 No. 3. Polonaise in A flat, Op. 53. MOSZKOWSKI: Etincelles No. 6.
Vladimir Horowitz, pianist
SONY CLASSICAL 88697604812 (2 disks) TT: 48:18 & 42:38
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SCHUMANN: Violin Sonata No. 2 in D minor, Op. 121. Kinderszenen, Op. 15. BARTÓK: Violin Sonata. Violin Sonata No. 1. KREISLER: Liebesleid. Schön Rosmarin
Gidon Kremer, violin/Martha Argerich, piano
EMI CLASSICS 93390 (2 disks) TT: 58:01 & 58:47
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CHOPIN: Ballade No. 1 in G minor, Op. 23. Etude in C sharp minor, Op. 10 No. 4. Mazurkas in C sharpo minor, Op. 41 No. 4. Mazurka in E minor, Op. 41 No. 1. Mazurka in C, Op. 24 No. 2. Mazurka in D, Op. 33 No. 2. Nocturne in F, Op. 15 No. 1. Nocturne in E flat, Op. 55 No. 2. Mazurka in A minor, Op. 59 No. 1. Mazurka in A flat, Op. 59 No. 2. Mazurka in F sharp minor, Op. 59 No. 3. Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58.
Martha Argerich, piano
DGG B0013960 (mono) TT: 64:25
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RACHMANINOFF: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18. Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Op. 30.
Simon Trpceski, piano/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orch/Vasily Petrenko, cond.
AVIE AV 2192 TT: 75:48
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Vladimir Horowitz was a sensation in Berlin up to the early 1930s both in recital and appearances with the Berlin Philharmonic (conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler and Bruno Walter). Dr. Elmar Weingarten, head of the Berlin Festival music department 1985-1990, had a dream of presenting a return concert by Horowitz in Berlin, and his notes in the CD booklet describe the manifold difficulties in arranging this. Horowitz finally decided to add Berlin to his concerts in Hamburg, Moscow and Leningrad, and the Berlin event took place Sunday afternoon at 4 (the time of all Horowitz recitals) May 18, 1986. All tickets were sold within two hours, and the concert, before an adoring audience, was a triumph for the venerable pianist. It can be heard in its entirety on Sony's new 2-CD issue, which sells for the price of one premium disk. Horowitz was 82 at the time and still in remarkable technical control. He had recorded all of this music previously, sometimes in multiple versions. His lustrous tone is ever apparent, and particularly effective are the music's gentle moments; Schumann's Kreisleriana is beautiful indeed in spite of a few slipped notes—no editing here, although it is unfortunate the different sections aren't tracked. Chopin's Op. 53 is given one of the most bizarre readings you'll ever hear, and the final encore, the Moszkowski showpiece, is tossed off with remarkable dexterity. Much applause is included after each work. This is an important addition to the Horowitz discography.

Two long-time friends can be heard in another live concert from Berlin recorded in December 2006. Pianist Martha Argerich and violinist Gidon Kremer have collaborated countless times, and this unusual concert of Schumann and Bartók is brilliantly played, with the two Kreisler lollipops as charming encores. Argerich also can be heard on a new DGG issue of Chopin recordings made in Berlin and Cologne in 1959 and 1967, here released for the first time, including several works she never previously recorded: Ballade No. 1, Etude Op. 10 No. 4 and four Mazurkas. Her Olympian account of the Sonata No. 3 is the highlight of this essential issue.

Young Macedonian pianist Simon Trpceski (b. 1979) has won many prestigious awards and already has appeared many many of the world's most famous orchestras and conductors. His EMI disk featuring music of Rachmaninoff and Scriabin was mentioned on this site (REVIEW). Now we have these recordings of Rachmaninoff's Concertos 2 and 3 recorded in Liverpool's Philharmonic Hall last year, with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic directed by Vasily Petrenko. This conductor's recording of Rachmaninoff's Symphonic Dances, Isle of the Dead and The Rock was praised on this site (REVIEW). Although these new recordings of Concertos 2 and 3 are excellent indeed, I cannot believe they represent Trpceski's best Rachmaninoff. Surely this recording of Concerto No. 3 does not match the incandescent performance the pianist gave with the New York Philharmonic conducted by Gianandrea Noseda in the 2005 season. Sonic quality of these concerto recordings is not as effective as what is heard on Petrenko's other Rachmaninoff CD, even though the producer (John Fraser) and engineer (David Pigott) are the same. The orchestra is close-up, the piano somewhat distanced.

R.E.B. (April 2010)