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CHAN 10296
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CHAN 10296

Shostakovich: Symphony No. 4 for two pianos

The Classical Shop
release date: March 2005

Recorded in 24 Bit / 96Khz

Originally recorded in 2004

Artists:

Rustem Hayroudinoff

piano

Colin Stone

piano

Venue:

Henry Wood Hall, Glasgow



Producer:

Rachel Smith



Engineer:

Jonathan Cooper


Michael Common



Record Label
Chandos

Genre:

Piano


Russian

Total Time - 58:59
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DMITRY SHOSTAKOVICH

(1906-1975)
Select Complete Single Disc for
   
  premiere recording in this version  
 

Symphony No. 4, Op. 43

59:00  
  Composer's arrangement for two pianos  
1 I Allegretto poco moderato - Presto 25:58
2 II Moderato con moto 8:45
3 III Largo - Allegro 24:16
   
 Rustem Hayroudinoff piano
 Colin Stone piano
  12-14 May 2004  
This recording, presented in the thirtieth anniversary year of the composer’s death, is an important event. Shostakovich was in the process of composing the work when the damning indictment of his opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk appeared in Pravda. Only too aware of artists who had ‘disappeared’ for producing politically unacceptable works, the composer had little option but to withdraw the work from rehearsal. This did not mean that work remained entirely unknown, however. At the time of its composition the composer made an arrangement of the work for two pianos. Its circulation was banned, but through this arrangement a specialist inner circle of devotees were able to familiarise themselves with the work.

This is the premiere recording of Shostakovich’s own transcription, performed by Rustem Hayroudinoff and Colin Stone.

Rustem Hayroudinoff’s previous recordings of Russian music have received outstanding reviews. He is here joined by Colin Stone, a highly respected concert artist who records regularly for Radio 3 and who is renowned as an exponent of Russian music.


"Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 4 had an inauspicious start. It was withdrawn before its first planned performance, and its full manuscript score disappeared during the Second World War. This arrangement for two pianos was, therefore, for many years, the only available documentation of this important work.

Amongst a later generation of the composer’s disciples was the young composer Boris Tischenko, who decided to undertake a public performance of the two piano arrangement with Professor Dmitriev of the Leningrad Conservatory in the presence of the composer as part of the institution’s 100th anniversary celebrations. This was apparently some time in 1960; shortly afterwards it became known that the composer’s assistant had discovered a set of parts of the symphony from which the original score could be reassembled. The premiere orchestral performance took place with the composer’s enthusiastic approval, in Moscow in 1961, some twenty-five years late. With the official Soviet Russian publication of the full score the following year, a long-standing and embarrassing gap in the composer’s numbered symphonies was closed at last.

Shostkovich’s arrangement of his Symphony No. 4 is a straight transcription of the work and constitutes a notable addition to the two-piano concert hall repertoire. It might even be advanced that heard in this form the symphony gains in sharpness and clarity from a linear and harmonic point of view, revealing above all Shostakovich’s power as an outstanding contrapuntist and showing that – as in the music of J.S. Bach, for whom the composer had the greatest admiration – a line drawing of the orchestral original by no means diminishes its impact. Moreover, the percussive and wide dynamic range of grand piano sonorities are admirably suited to the overall character of this highly charged music. In short, this is a valuable companion to the original version.
"

This recording, presented in the thirtieth anniversary year of the composer’s death, is an important event. Shostakovich was in the process of composing the work when the damning indictment of his opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk appeared in Pravda. Only too aware of artists who had ‘disappeared’ for producing politically unacceptable works, the composer had little option but to withdraw the work from rehearsal. This did not mean that work remained entirely unknown, however. At the time of its composition the composer made an arrangement of the work for two pianos. Its circulation was banned, but through this arrangement a specialist inner circle of devotees were able to familiarise themselves with the work.

This is the premiere recording of Shostakovich’s own transcription, performed by Rustem Hayroudinoff and Colin Stone.

Rustem Hayroudinoff’s previous recordings of Russian music have received outstanding reviews. He is here joined by Colin Stone, a highly respected concert artist who records regularly for Radio 3 and who is renowned as an exponent of Russian music.


Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 4 had an inauspicious start. It was withdrawn before its first planned performance, and its full manuscript score disappeared during the Second World War. This arrangement for two pianos was, therefore, for many years, the only available documentation of this important work.

Amongst a later generation of the composer’s disciples was the young composer Boris Tischenko, who decided to undertake a public performance of the two piano arrangement with Professor Dmitriev of the Leningrad Conservatory in the presence of the composer as part of the institution’s 100th anniversary celebrations. This was apparently some time in 1960; shortly afterwards it became known that the composer’s assistant had discovered a set of parts of the symphony from which the original score could be reassembled. The premiere orchestral performance took place with the composer’s enthusiastic approval, in Moscow in 1961, some twenty-five years late. With the official Soviet Russian publication of the full score the following year, a long-standing and embarrassing gap in the composer’s numbered symphonies was closed at last.

Shostkovich’s arrangement of his Symphony No. 4 is a straight transcription of the work and constitutes a notable addition to the two-piano concert hall repertoire. It might even be advanced that heard in this form the symphony gains in sharpness and clarity from a linear and harmonic point of view, revealing above all Shostakovich’s power as an outstanding contrapuntist and showing that – as in the music of J.S. Bach, for whom the composer had the greatest admiration – a line drawing of the orchestral original by no means diminishes its impact. Moreover, the percussive and wide dynamic range of grand piano sonorities are admirably suited to the overall character of this highly charged music. In short, this is a valuable companion to the original version.


Hayroudinoff plays with an electrifying and compelling inevitability that connects the listener with the composer himself… The larger than life recording suits the exuberance of Hayroudinoff s stunning artistry to a tee.
Classic FM Magazine ‘Best Buy’ on CHAN 10107 (Rachmaninov)

Rustem Hayroudinoff proves himself to be a player in the great Russian virtuoso tradition.
Gramophone on CHAN 10095 (Rachmaninov)

This two-piano version played an important role in rescuing one of Shostakovich’s most innovative scores from Communist Part mandated obscurity. Harmonically and formally this is one of the composer’s most boldly original creations
American Record Guide

Superb premiere recording of Shostakovich’s own 1936 arrangement for two pianos – the only form in which the work was heard before 1960.
Classic FM Magazine

Rustem Hayroudinoff proves himself to be a player in the great Russian virtuoso tradition.
Gramophone on CHAN 10095 (Rachmaninov)

As Eric Roseberry suggests in the booklet, there are gains in linear clarity; often one is so carried along by sheer volume or weight of the orchestral textures that it is easy to forget how contrapuntal the music actually is… Hayroudinoff and Stone impress with their knowledge of the score, giving a well-prepared, gutsy performance, superbly engineered by Jonathan Cooper and Michael Common.
Gramophone

The reading is accorded a spacious yet detailed sound – the carefully rethought dynamic range rendered with exemplary clarity, and the placing of each piano with the aural picture readily enhancing the most complex passagework. That this is a major Shostakovich release goes without saying, but, more than that, it will hopefully lead to frequent hearings, during the composer’s centenary year and beyond, of what is here revealed as an absorbing and perceptive transcription.
International Record Review

Rustem Hayroudinoff s fresh, intelligent andtremendously witty playing makes this a CD Id give anyone for Christmas. This young Russian is clearly a deep-thinking, independent and very characterful artist and concert halls should book him, fast.
BBC Music Magazine ‘Best of 2001’ on CHAN 9907 (Shostakovich)




*****
This is the way that Shostakovich first demonstrated his fourth symphony: on two pianos. The symphony is the most abstract of all his works and it seems unlikely that it would work for dual keyboards - but it does! In fact, the restriction to pianos focuses the music, making its structure and its flow more accessible and understandable, especially under the expert fingers of Hayroudinoff and Stone. If you want to know what Shostakovich is trying to achieve with the Fourth, this version gives you a real insight. Emotive and rewarding.
K Harrison

*****
M Nitschke

*****
R Seipajarvi-tric