Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

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Belle
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Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by Belle » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:09 pm

I've just been alerted to this wonderful pianist's Scarlatti sonatas. Does anybody else have these works performed by Weissenberg? Apparently Robert Levin recommended them in a recent comment.

Lance
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by Lance » Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:10 am

Yes, I have them, love 'em. I happen to very much like the pianist though he was somewhat controversial in some circles. His EMI/Warner Icon boxed set is very worthy of consideration. DGG issued his complete recordings on 4 CDs (including the Scarlatti), and RCA also issued all of Weissenberg's discs in a 7 CD boxed set (including his first recordings for Columbia Records).
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Holden Fourth
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by Holden Fourth » Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:49 am

I love Scarlatti who I think was well ahead of his time so I have recordings by many pianists (though nothing on harpsichord). Top interpretations for me include Sergei Babayan, Dubravka Tomsic, Mordecai Shehori, Yevgeny Sudbin, Gilels and of course Horowitz. Weissenberg is 2nd tier for me.

John F
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by John F » Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:25 am

I've heard some of Weissenberg's Scarlatti but not recently and I don't have the recording(s). Weissenberg was an emulator of Horowitz, whether consciously or not I don't know, and that extended to his repertoire from Scarlatti to Rachmaninoff 3. Horowitz's Scarlatti is marvelously colorful; my aural image of Weissenberg is rather monochromatic and straitlaced though of course brilliantly played.
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by maestrob » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:05 am

John F wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:25 am
I've heard some of Weissenberg's Scarlatti but not recently and I don't have the recording(s). Weissenberg was an emulator of Horowitz, whether consciously or not I don't know, and that extended to his repertoire from Scarlatti to Rachmaninoff 3. Horowitz's Scarlatti is marvelously colorful; my aural image of Weissenberg is rather monochromatic and straitlaced though of course brilliantly played.
That's about right, John, but I think the three sets Lance mentioned are well worth having.

jbuck919
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by jbuck919 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:36 pm

Yes, well, I should be able give them performances so " monochromatic and straitlaced." (With practice--a lot of it--Scarlatti is one of the few keyboard players I could play more or less to my own satisfaction. His work is often virtuoso, but it does not require a transcendental technique.)

There are a number of sonatas on YouTube. One (not the group that follows) was uploaded by someone called Beckmesser 2. Any connection with our Beckmesser?


There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

John F
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by John F » Sun Mar 04, 2018 5:10 pm

Incidentally, Scarlatti's sonatas have been the property of virtuoso pianists for a very long time. Carl Tausig (1841-1871) arranged two of them as the Pastorale and Capriccio, and Josef Hofmann recorded them for Brunswick in 1923 in an entirely pianistic style. I love it!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yLi7gr5yqw
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Belle
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Re: Alexis Weissenberg plays Scarlatti

Post by Belle » Sun Mar 04, 2018 5:30 pm

Incidentally, in the Jorge Bolet "desert island discs" program he speaks about his veneration for two pianists above all - Hofmann and Rachmaninov.

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