This much awaited recording offers keenly idiomatic performances of the most famous works by Grieg, played by the composer’s own orchestra, the Bergen Philharmonic, and its Chief Conductor, Edward Gardner. The drama and passion of such favourite pieces as the incidental music to Peer Gynt and the Piano Concerto are superbly captured in surround-sound with exemplary Chandos sound quality. Unlike most existing recordings, offering only the orchestral suites, this disc presents numerous extra excerpts from Peer Gynt, which follow the sequence of Henrik Ibsen‘s dramatic poem, including sections for the unique Norwegian 'Hardanger Fiddle’. Having collaborated with the orchestra on several occasions, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet is the soloist in the Piano Concerto, a piece that stands out as a shining example of a single great thought captured and expressed in music. The power of this conception is evident throughout the concerto in the pianist’s faithful, yet highly romantic interpretation.
The 1970s were heady years indeed for the Haydn collector, with complete recorded cycles of the symphonies, quartets and keyboard works and the first-ever recordings of many of the operas. Attracting less immediate attention than these boxed sets were the activities of the Beaux Arts Trio who, proceeding by stealth with one disc at a time, recorded Haydn's complete piano trios between 1970 and 1978.
Sonatas 7 - 12, composed between 1777 and about 1783, mark a significant evolution with respect to the preceding ones: Mozart’s expressive world now takes on many new facets, and in Sonata K 310 it reaches dramatic depths of unprecedented intensity and sombreness. In the other sonatas, too, although seemingly “lighter”, we find an infinity of expressive approaches that had never previously appeared with such naturalness and variety of inflections. However, Mozart always succeeds in maintaining an admirable balance between seriousness and facetiousness, between playfulness and drama, with constant originality in his management of form.