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Piano Recital: Rabinovich, Roman - PROKOFIEV, S. / RAVEL, M. / STRAVINSKY, I. (Ballet Russes)

Piano Recital: Rabinovich, Roman - PROKOFIEV, S. / RAVEL, M. / STRAVINSKY, I. (Ballet Russes)

The Classical Shop
release date: March 2013

Originally recorded in 2013


Roman Rabinovich



Drew University, Madison, New Jersey, United States

Record Label
Orchid Classics




Total Time - 61:33
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Piano Recital: Rabinovich, Roman - PROKOFIEV, S. / RAVEL, M. / STRAVINSKY, I. (Ballet Russes)

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10 Pieces from Romeo and Juliet, Op. 75

1 No. 1. Folk Dance 4:18
2 No. 2. Scene: The Street Awakens 1:33
3 No. 3. Minuet: Arrival of the Guests 2:59
4 No. 4. Juliet as a Young Girl 3:44
5 No. 5. Masquers 2:24
6 No. 6. Montagues and Capulets 3:25
7 No. 7. Friar Laurence 2:37
8 No. 8. Mercutio 2:12
9 No. 9. Dance of the Girls with Lilies 2:35
10 No. 10. Romeo and Juliet before Parting 8:54



Daphnis et Chloe (arr. R. Rabinovich)

11 Pantomime 6:05
12 Danse generale 4:34



3 Movements from Petrushka

13 No. 1. Danse russe (Russian Dance) 2:45
14 No. 2. Chez Petrouchka (Petrushka's Cell) 4:43
15 No. 3. La semaine grasse (The Shrove-tide Fair) 8:45
 Roman Rabinovich Soloist

This recording is my homage to an exciting era. I first came to learn about the Ballets Russes and Sergei Diaghilev as a young teenager, through my interest in Leon Bakst, a wonderful Russian artist, mostly remembered now for his designs for Daphnis and Chloe, Sheherezade and many other famous Diaghilev productions. Reading about this era of incredible artistic happenings in early 20th century Paris, I learned that the Ballets Russes had a profound influence on the artistic trends of the next few generations. The company’s grand- scale productions, which spanned its first season in 1907, through to Diaghilev’s death in 1929 and later became known as Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo until the 1950s, instantly became one of the most prestigious attractions in the Western world. These productions fused avant- garde music, dance and style in a fresh and innovative way that was forward- looking and radical. Diaghilev’s stars were Nijinsky, Pavlova, Massine, Picasso, Matisse...and Stravinsky, Ravel and Prokofiev. 
The three pieces I perform on this recording are arrangements. While preparing them I was faced with an obvious problem: how can I play this music on the piano without compromising the luscious and colourful timbres of the orchestration? Stravinsky, Prokofiev and Ravel were among the greatest masters of orchestration in music history and playing their scores on “merely” a piano might seem to some as a limitation. I believe that the solution to this problem lies within the nature of the piano, which is a self-sufficient, self-contained instrument. Its notes range higher and lower than the entire orchestra, and it can produce a wide variety of dynamic colours and effects. I feel that one can play anything on the piano. Therefore, these arrangements are not direct transcriptions. They are not meant merely to reproduce the sounds of the orchestra but instead they stand in their own right as essentially pianistic pieces that are derived from the original ballets.
Prokofiev, Ravel and Stravinsky – how aesthetically different they are from each other, yet in my mind they have a common thread – they were inspired by the energy and charm of one man, a force of nature – Sergei Diaghilev! 
Recording this CD and making the drawings to design it have given me a great deal of joy. I hope that the sense of fun and adventure I experienced will come across to the listener. 
© Roman Rabinovich, 2013 

 "This brilliant debut from Rabinovich is vivacious and imaginative. The Romeo and Juliet is deployed with a brilliance that does justice to the orchestration. His playing oozes vibrancy and just the right amount of tension to propel the music forward... ’Romeo and Juliet’ is absolutely lovely and well paced. The same energy can be heard in the other pieces. The sheer virtuosity of his treatment of Petrouchka is astounding ..."

Sang Woo Kang - American Record Guide - September/October 2013

                       Performance ****      Recording ****

"This is clearly a labour of love... the enthusiasm of his [Rabinovichs’s] joyful playing is infectious - the absence is barely registered of the rich orchestral fabric in which these ballets are clothed..."

Christopher Dingle - BBC Music magazine - October 2013

                          Music **** (Very Good)               Sound **** (Very Good)


will  - Fono Forum magazine - August 2013

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