Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

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Scott Morrison
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Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

Post by Scott Morrison » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:15 pm

Someone just sent me this url on YouTube of a fascinating audio track of Sviatoslav Richter and Elisabeth Leonskaya playing a arrangement Grieg made of Mozart's Fantasy in C Minor, K. 575. It's in two parts and the second part is here.

Accompanying the two tracks is this commentary: 'On 27 May 1877 Edvard Grieg wrote to his publisher: "During the winter I have been engaged on a task that I found particulary interesting - adding a free, second piano to several of Mozart's sonatas. The work was intended in the first insatnce for teaching purposes but by chance found its way into the concert hall, where the whole thing sounded surprisingly good."

Grieg himself went some way towards preempting potential protests by insisting that his arrangements were intended for teaching. Such a line of argument obliges to examine the customs of the time - an age in which the gramophone was barely a glint in its investor's eye and there was no opportunity to hear and follow interpretations at second hand. As a result, it was common practice around 1880 for piano teachers to accompany their pupils on a second piano, either to ensure the correct tempo or, perhaps, to make the soloist's solitary existance somewhat less intolerable...'
Der Himmel hängt voller Geigen. - Bavarian folksong

Werner
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Re: Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

Post by Werner » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:07 pm

Thanks to Lance's broadcast, we've become quite acquainted with this arrangement - a pretty representative part, anyway. EXCEPT what we've been hearing is Grieg's two-piano arrangement of the C Major Sonata, K 545.

Isn it possible that there's an error in Scott's post, or did Grieg (quite possibly) give similar treatment to both works?

And while we're at it, Lance, who are the two pianists in the recording you use to conclude your broadcast program?
Werner Isler

Scott Morrison
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Re: Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

Post by Scott Morrison » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:13 pm

No error. Grieg arranged both. And there is a YouTube version of the the K.545 'Sonata Facile' too.
Der Himmel hängt voller Geigen. - Bavarian folksong

Lance
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Re: Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

Post by Lance » Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:39 pm

Aha! I thought you'd never ask. Why, it is Richter and Leonskaja in the theme song of my radio broadcast. I receive many requests to furnish this information. It was released by Teldec some years ago.
Werner wrote:Thanks to Lance's broadcast, we've become quite acquainted with this arrangement - a pretty representative part, anyway. EXCEPT what we've been hearing is Grieg's two-piano arrangement of the C Major Sonata, K 545.

Isn it possible that there's an error in Scott's post, or did Grieg (quite possibly) give similar treatment to both works?

And while we're at it, Lance, who are the two pianists in the recording you use to conclude your broadcast program?
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When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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pizza
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Re: Grieg Two-Piano Arrangement of Mozart's Fantasia in C Minor!

Post by pizza » Fri Jan 15, 2010 2:11 am

Scott Morrison wrote:Grieg himself went some way towards preempting potential protests by insisting that his arrangements were intended for teaching. Such a line of argument obliges to examine the customs of the time - an age in which the gramophone was barely a glint in its investor's eye and there was no opportunity to hear and follow interpretations at second hand. As a result, it was common practice around 1880 for piano teachers to accompany their pupils on a second piano, either to ensure the correct tempo or, perhaps, to make the soloist's solitary existance somewhat less intolerable...'
The common practice for piano teachers to accompany their pupils on a second piano was a well-established procedure long before the gramophone was even invented, and persists to this date. I think it's odd that Grieg would find it necessary to preempt potential protests about his arrangement. What possible practical consequences could such protests have, and why would he even care? Teachers use all kinds of methods and devices to teach.

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