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Concertos: November 2008 Archives

On the Other Hand...

Querstand VKJK0611

Franz Schmidt

Concertante Variations on a Theme of Beethoven for Piano Left Hand & Orchestra (1923)
Concerto in E Flat Major for Piano Left Hand & Orchestra (1934)

Carlo Grante, piano
Middle German Radio Symphony Orchestra/Fabio Luisi
Querstand VKJK0611 79:01

The Austrian-American pianist Paul Wittgenstein, who lost his right arm in World War I, commissioned a number of works for piano left hand of which the best known are the Ravel concerto, Prokofiev's 4th piano concerto, and Britten's Diversions. The two works on this CD are far less known and are said to have been more to Wittgenstein's liking. The variations are on the little scherzo from the Spring Violin Sonata. The concerto runs about 48 minutes and contains what seems to be difficult writing for the piano. Both works are Romanticism writ large and are commended especially to those with a taste for the music of this period.

[ Available on CD: Amazon - UK - Germany - Canada - France - Japan - ArkivMusic ]

[ Sheet music by this composer: Sheet Music Plus - ]

Orchestral Music from Down Under

ABC Classics 476226-7

Carl Vine
(b. 1954)

Oboe Concerto (1996) 1
Canzona (1985)
Suite from The Tempest (1990)
Smith's Alchemy (1994)

1 Diana Doherty, oboe
Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra/Ola Rudner
ABC Classics 476226-7 70:16

The Australian composer Carl Vine has a number of CDs to his credit including a set of the six symphonies, also on ABC Classics, and one of piano music on Tall Poppies which includes the first two sonatas and the Anne Landa Preludes. This CD offers different facets of his work. The concerto is by turns dramatic and lyrical, while the Canzona for strings and Smith's Alchemy are somewhat grittier. The Tempest, which has some affinity with the Copland of Appalachian Spring, has its climax in a memorable theme for the horns.

[ Available on CD: Amazon - UK - Germany - Canada - France - Japan - ArkivMusic ]

[ Sheet music by this composer: Sheet Music Plus - ]