In the third of three new landmark albums on the Decca label, Nelson Freire marks his 70th birthday year with a stunning recording of Chopin’s lyrical and brilliant Piano Concerto No. 2. The recording was made in Cologne with the Gurzenich-Orchester Koln and Lionel Bringuier, one of the most talked-about of the younger generation of conductors. The release also features some favorite Chopin solo works including a Ballade, Berceuse, Polonaise and three Mazurkas.
This intimate documentary by João Moreira Salles features one of the Brazil’s most prominent pianists. Nelson Freire was a child prodigy from Minas and was destined for fame later in life. The film covers his travels to France, Belgium, Russia and, of course, Brazil, as he performs in concert and recitals before admirers and fans. The music is absolutely extraordinary as Freire plays Brahms, Schumann, Tchaikovsky, Chopin, Bach, Gluck, Villa-Lobos and Rachmaninoff. Argentine Pianist Martha Argerich is also featured in this outstanding portrait of a extraordinarily talented contemporary artist.
The legendary Brazilian pianist Nelson Freire specializes in the 19th century and has turned to recording Bach in his eighth decade, apparently for the first time. All you can say is that it was worth the wait. His Bach is typically restrained, not unaware of the long tradition of Bach piano performances, but decidedly unlike anyone else's approach. In general, Freire is pianistic without applying a lot of pedal.
In celebration of the Liszt year 2011, multi-award winning pianist Nelson Freire has personally selected the repertoire for his latest recording - his contribution to the anniversary of the pianist-composer's birth in 1811. The very personal selection includes Liszt showpieces such as the Harmonies du soir (12 ètudes d'exécution transcendante), the Hungarian Rhapsodies and Liebestrëume.
The career of the young Russian pianist Pavel Kolesnikov has taken off since he won the Honens Prize in 2012. He issued a live recording and then a fine album of Tchaikovsky pieces that, while pleasures all, are not really everyday items. With this set of 24 of Chopin's 58 mazurkas, he makes what might be regarded as his debut in mainstream repertory. Twisting and turning the slightly tense rhythm of the Polish folk dance in a dozen different directions, they're an excellent pick for Kolesnikov's deliberate yet playful style. Kolesnikov observes all of Chopin's repeats, daring the listener to find them tedious and delivering with readings that diverge in small but telling details from the first time through. It's in the small details that Kolesnikov excels. The temperature of the entire recording is low, and Hyperion's engineers set just the right level at their favorite venue for this kind of recital, the Wyastone Estate concert hall. But the listener is drawn into Kolesnikov's unique handling of the unusual technical devices in which these pieces abound.