Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sviatoslav Richter Plays Scriabin, Debussy & Prokofiev

Richter commands an unusually wide repertory, but he avoids obvious virtuoso pieces. He makes no secret of his personal taste, his preference for certain works and composers, and his dislike of others. He also stubbornly refuses to be marketed beyond limits of his own choosing. Bach, Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann are centres of gravity in his repertory, and of course he as a special relationship with the Russian masters : Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov, Scriabin and, above all, Serge Prokofiev. "Then as now, the whole man existed for me in his works, which meant as much to me as he did himself", he wrote after Prokofiev's death. While still a student he gave the pubic première of the commposer's Piano Sonata n° 6 in Moscow ; the work had gripped him time before a private audiance : "Before he had even finished I had decided to start practising it !" Emil Gilels — Richter's friend and a fellow- student of Neuhaus — gave the première of Prokofiev Piano Sonata N° 8 in 1944, but from the very first it was one of Richter's favourite pieces. "Of all Prokofiev's sonatas, this is the richest. It contains a complete human life with all its contradictions anomalies. From time to time it freezes, as if you are listening to the inexorable march of time. It is a little difficult to understand, but because of its riches it is like a tree whorse branches have to bear the weight of its fruit." Mira Mendelson, in her memoir of Prokofiev, wrote : "Serge Sergeyevich not only worked on different works simultaneously, but also on different movements of one and the same work. That was the case, for instance, with the three piano sonatas that he planned in 1939 — n° 6, 7 & 8. He began all ten movements of these sonats at he same time, and it was only later that he put n° 7 and 8 aside in order ro concentrate on n° 6...
Wolfgang Dömling (translation : Mary Whittall), from the booklet

Sviatoslav Richter
Scriabin, Debussy


Alexander Scriabin

Piano Sonata n° 5 in F-Sharp Major, Op. 53  10:46
1 Allegro - Presto con allegrezza
Meno vivo - Prestissimo

Claude Debussy

Estampes (1903)
2 I. Pagodes  6:07
3 II. La Soirée dans Grenade  5:24
4 III. Jardins sous la Pluie  3:12

Préludes, from Book 1
5 Voiles (Modéré)  3:46
6 Le Vent dans la plaine (Animé)  1:56
7 Les Collines d'Anacapri (Très modéré)  3:03

Serge Prokofiev

Visions Fugitives, Op. 22
8 N° 3, 6 & 9  2:37

Piano Sonata n° 8 in B-Flat Major, Op. 84
9 I. Andante dolce - Allegro moderato  15:46
Andante - Andante dolce come prima - Allegro
10 II. Andante sognando  4:17
11 III. Vivace - Allegro ben marcato
Andantino - Vivace


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded at Wembley Town Hall, London ; July, 1961 [# 2-7, 9-11] ; in Italia ; November, 1962 [# 1 & 8]


pedro gamundi said...


Melanchthon said...

Arewenotmen? said...

Merci mille fois sur l'échelle de Richter !

Ariel said...

Muchísimas gracias Melanchthon!