Early 19th-Century Piano Music for 4 Hands on the Traugott Berndt Piano (1845-1847)


1 CD 

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Νέο!21 Ιουνίου 2022

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Jan Ladislav Dussek

Grande sonate for Piano 4-Hands in C Major, Op. 48, C. 186

Ferdinand Ries

Polonaise No. 1 in C Major, Op. 41

Polonaise No. 2 in B-Flat Major, Op. 93

Polonaise No. 3 in E-Flat Major, Op. 138

Polonaise No. 4 in D Major, Op. 140

Michal Kleofas Oginski

Collection de polonaises (Excerpts) (Arr. M. Toporowski for Piano 4-Hands)


Marek Toporowski (Piano), Irmina Obońska (Piano)

Marek Toporowski & Irmina Obońska Piano Duo

This CD presents chamber piano works for four hands dating back to the era of the twilight of Classicism and the beginnings of Romanticism in Europe, little known to a wider audience.

The music was recorded on a historical instrument, a piano from the 1840s made in the Wroclaw keyboard instruments factory of Johann Karl Traugott Berndt. The presented pieces are mainly polonaises a genre being the stylization of a Polish national dance, especially appreciated in Romantic salon music, which would find its peak in Chopin’s oeuvre. One of the most beautiful polonaises was created by the French composer Ferdinand Ries (1784-1838), still stylistically close to Beethoven and his bold orchestral vision of sound, although his chamber pieces are light and graceful, perfectly reflecting the essence of home music making. Mikolaj Kleofas Oginski (1765-1833) is one of the important composers writing music in the Polish national spirit, especially known for his polonaises, arranged on this album for four hands in the mood of period music. A more serious accent is the truly virtuoso Grande Sonate, Op. 48 arranged for two performers by Jan Ladislav Dusik (Dussek) (1760-1812), a Czech composer, formally close to the disciplined Beethovenesque Classics, but whose spirit strived for new, innovative sounds, brought by the upcoming period of Romanticism.

The artists performing this music are a duo of excellent and recognized Polish pianists. Marek Toporowski is a virtuoso of the organ, piano and harpsichord as well as a conductor, specializing in early music and reconstruction of historical sounds. He is accompanied by the pianist and harpsichordist Irmina Obonska, also active in the field of early music.

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