Hyperion showcases two lesser lights and hits a Liszt century, while Brian Cox illuminates The Planets
• The Hyperion label continues its Romantic piano concerto series with works by two composers who can hardly be described as household names: by Hans August Alexander Bronsart von Schellendorf (or just plain Hans von Bronsart) and Anton Urspruch. No, me neither, but don’t be put off; these are really interesting pieces. Liszt thought so highly of his pupil Bronsart that he dedicated his second piano concerto to him, and while Bronsart’s impressively grandiose F sharp minor concerto of 1873 displays many Lisztian flourishes, it’s very distinctively his own. He wrote it for his wife Ingeborg Starck, for whom, incidentally, Wagner harboured a passion. She must have been quite a pianist, as this stentorian concerto makes huge demands on the soloist, particularly in the spectacularly fiery and exciting finale.
Urspruch, another pupil of Liszt in Weimar, took a very different approach, keeping his soloist constantly busy, scampering around the keyboard in the bucolic first movement of his concerto in E flat major, not least in an elaborate, extended cadenza, and in a spirited, dancing finale, which develops around a series of spectacular, mercurial variations. Bringing these pieces so vividly to life are pianist Emmanuel Despax with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Eugene Tzigane.Continue reading...
Sun Oct 14 08:00:12 CEST 2018