Re: A Dozen Obscure Favourites
Posted by Ford on May 24, 2019, 3:00 am, in reply to "A Dozen Obscure Favourites"
I think we all have our favourites, of which we wonder "Why is this not more popular?", and I suspect the answer is that some works are difficult for performers to get right. This is, I think, more often due to not understanding the mood of the piece, rather that issues of technique. Some works lie silent, waiting for that revelatory performance... |
Borodin Piano Quintet - Several recordings available, but most rush through the outer movements. Timings for the finale, which is the core of piece, can range from 10 to 15 minutes. The Moscow Quartet led by pianist Mndoiantz (Harmonia Mundi/Brilliant) are streets ahead of most competition (I haven't yet heard the Goldner Quartet on Hyperion).
Kalinnikov's 1st symphony - conductors tend to race through this, but Friedman (Arte Nova) broadens it and brings out the shades of Borodin and Bruckner that bring it to life.
Lalo Piano Concerto - I am long weary of this composer's work, except for this lovely little concerto, which I have in the old recording on Vox.
Mendelssohn string quintets - the Fine Arts Quartet bring out the power of the slow movements like no one else, and I quite often find myself humming the opening of the first quintet (with its loving tribute to the central motif of Mozart's Jupiter symphony).
Schubert String Quartet No. 3 - So many people choose to be deaf to Schubert's early works of genius! If this was by Haydn or Mozart, I suspect it would be one of their best-known works. I recommend the recording by the Quatuor Sine Nomine (Cascavelle).
Schumann's violin concerto is still generally overlooked, but it is one of my favourite concertos, and my favourite of Schumann's. It does seem to be a piece that is very easy to get wrong - usually by overworking the details instead of channelling the bright boldness that I think is essential in performing this composer. The Bell/Dohnanyi recording is still supreme.