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BALAKIREV, Mili Alekseyevich (1837-1910)

COMPLETE PIANO WORKS • 1

PIANO SONATAS


  • Nicholas Walker, piano

Balakirev’s Sonata in B flat minor, Op. 5 (1905) is the summit of his ambition to create a work that expresses the entire history of Russia. This highly original and most moving of all Russian Sonatas encapsulates all three Sonatas, having begun life as the Grande Sonate, Op. 3 (1855), here recorded for the first time, subsequently becoming the First Sonata (1856). This recording of the Sonata, Op. 5 is the first to have been made from the original manuscript, without the mistakes to be found in the two published scores.

Tracklist

 
Piano Sonata in B-Flat Minor (1905) (00:25:29 )
1
I. Andantino (00:06:23)
2
II. Mazurka: Moderato (00:05:14)
3
III. Intermezzo: Larghetto (00:04:18)
4
IV. Allegro non troppo, ma con fuoco (00:08:32)
 
Piano Sonata No. 1 in B-Flat Minor, Op. 5 (1856) (00:20:33 )
5
I. Andante - Allegro assai, feroce (00:10:52)
6
II. Mazurka: Tempo di mazurka (00:03:53)
7
III. Andante (00:06:01)
 
Piano Sonata in B-Flat Minor, Op. 3, "Grande Sonate" () (00:30:45 )
8
I. Allegro feroce * (00:12:00)
9
II. Mazurka * (00:03:52)
10
III. Larghetto * (00:08:12)
11
IV. Finale: Allegro grazioso * (00:06:22)
12
V. Epilogue: Fuga * (00:00:44)
* World Première Recording
Total Time: 01:16:23

The Artist

Nicholas Walker studied at the Royal Academy of Music and the Moscow Conservatoire. Winner of the first Newport International Piano competition, he has performed with major British Orchestras, given recitals worldwide, and recorded for the BBC, BMG Arte Nova, ASV, Chandos and Danacord labels. He is also sought after as an imaginative and sensitive accompanist. Although his Beethoven performances have brought him special critical acclaim, and his performances of lyrical and late romantic piano music have also been highly praised, he is best known for championing the neglected leader of ‘The Mighty Handful’, Mili Alekseyevich Balakirev. In 2010 he organized the Balakirev Centenary concerts in London. He also teaches at the Royal Academy of Music.

www.nicholaswalkerpiano.com

Reviews

Diapason

“Nicholas Walker serves this music with brio, without any loss of intensity” – Diapason

“All the playing is exemplary and Nicholas Walker…has added another powerful voice to the demands for a reappraisal of this neglected composer. ” – MusicWeb International

“He [Walker] has the full technical capability to handle all of the demands of this score, which also bodes well for future volumes in the series.” – American Record Guide

“The fireworks that Nicholas Walker set off here are fun and provide the perfect introduction to the popular power of the “neo Russian school”. ” – Spiegel Online