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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Ernő Dohnányi - Piano Concertos (Martin Roscoe)


Composer: Ernő Dohnányi
  1. Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 5: I. Adagio maestoso - Allegro - Adagio
  2. Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 5: II. Andante
  3. Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 5: III. Vivace - Cadenza con orchestra - Vivace
  4. Piano Concerto No. 2 in B minor, Op. 42: I. Allegro - attacca:
  5. Piano Concerto No. 2 in B minor, Op. 42: II. Adagio, poco rubato - attacca:
  6. Piano Concerto No. 2 in B minor, Op. 42: III. Allegro vivace

Martin Roscoe, piano
BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Fedor Glushchenko, conductor

Date: 1993
Label: Hyperion



The sixth disc in Hyperion's admirable if uneven series, ''The Romantic Piano Concerto'' (the choice of works is enterprising, the selection of soloists sometimes unwise), this coupling provides a salutary reminder of two of Dohnanyi's most substantial if sadly neglected works. Both concertos—separated by 50 years, but mildly rather than radically different in their musical language—burgeon with sufficient heartfelt melody and high-flying pianistics to satisfy even the most ardent aficionado of the genre. And if, as the insert-note so aptly puts it, Dohnanyi hardly provides anything so important as a bridge between Liszt and Bartok, and remains ''stuck in a style somewhere between Brahms and Saint-Saens'', his alternation of dark and scintillating ideas is accomplished with an easy and professional aplomb. The Second Concerto's crisply accented finale in whirling and nationalistic duple time is notably attractive.

Martin Roscoe's superbly authoritative performances are majestic and glittering as required, and his survival of his recessed placing in relation to the orchestra (the split-chord ascent at 5'08'' in the First Concerto, and the decoration at 12'06'' in the Second are two among several virtually inaudible details) is doubly to his credit. Fedor Glushchenko's partnership is excellent and, overall, the recordings are of high quality.

-- Bryce Morrison, Gramophone

More reviews:
BBC Music Magazine PERFORMANCE: ***** / SOUND: ****


Ernő Dohnányi (July 27, 1877 – February 9, 1960) was a Hungarian conductor, composer and pianist. He used a German form of his name, Ernst von Dohnányi, on most of his published compositions. Dohnányi's compositional style was personal, but very conservative. His music largely subscribes to the Neoromantic idiom. Some characterize his style as traditional mainstream Euro-Germanic in the Brahmsian manner (structurally rather than the way the music actually sounds) rather than specifically Hungarian, while others hear very little of Brahms in his music.


Martin Roscoe (born 3 August 1952 in Halton, Runcorn, Cheshire) is an English classical pianist, who performs as a concerto soloist, as a recitalist and as a chamber musician. He studied at the Royal Manchester College of Music with Gordon Green and Marjorie Clementi. He has a repertoire of over 100 concertos performed or recorded. His chamber music partnerships include Peter Donohoe, Tasmin Little, Jennifer Pike and many more. Having had over 500 broadcasts, including seven BBC Prom appearances, Martin is one of the most regularly played pianists on BBC Radio 3.


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