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Kristian Bezuidenhout - Beethoven : Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 5 "Emperor"

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Beethoven : Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 5 "Emperor"

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Freiburger Barockorchester, Pablo Heras-Casado

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Many of us may have set goals for the new year, but harmonia mundi set theirs particularly high. The independent record label intends on killing two birds with one stone by launching an extensive Beethoven edition that spans from 2020 (one hundred and fifty years since his birth) to 2027 (the bicentenary of his death), in a series of new recordings by new musicians under the label. For years to come, this non-exhaustive edition will be a reflection of the interpretative trends from the 21st century. This first volume of the Complete Piano Concertos on period instruments (there will be another on modern instruments) brings together the two extremes of Beethoven’s repertoire, namely Concertos No. 2 and No. 5, the former of which was composed first.

Kristian Bezuidenhout’s exceptional musicality renders the dispute over instrument manufacturing seemingly artificial and fruitless, as he is at ease playing both early and modern pianos. After an inspired performance of Mozart’s complete Sonatas, we follow him as he journeys through the Beethoven Concertos, working closely with the Freiburg Barockorchester ensemble, for whom Bezuidenhout and Gottfried von der Goltz have been in charge of artistic direction since 2017-2018. This may not be a ground-breaking endeavour but what sets it apart is the meticulous attention to detail from Kristian Bezuidenhout and conductor Pablo Heras-Casado with regards to articulations and dynamics. The same can also be said for their choice of cadenzas, which the pianist often reinterprets using the same instrument for the complete work, resulting in a modern rendition played on a Viennese Conrad Graf piano dating from 1824. Confronted with musical practices from the end of the 18th century, the music of young Beethoven comes alive as never before. © François Hudry/Qobuz

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Beethoven : Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 5 "Emperor"

Kristian Bezuidenhout

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Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-Flat Major, Op. 73, 'Emperor' (Ludwig van Beethoven)

1
I. Allegro
00:19:40

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

2
II. Adagio un poco mosso
00:06:34

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

3
III. Rondo. Allegro
00:10:12

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-Flat Major, Op. 19 (Ludwig van Beethoven)

4
I. Allegro con brio
00:13:38

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

5
II. Adagio
00:07:33

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

6
III. Rondo. Molto allegro
00:05:47

Kristian Bezuidenhout, Piano - Freiburger Barockorchester - Pablo Heras-Casado, Conductor - Ludwig van Beethoven, Composer

2020 harmonia mundi 2017 harmonia mundi

Album Description

Many of us may have set goals for the new year, but harmonia mundi set theirs particularly high. The independent record label intends on killing two birds with one stone by launching an extensive Beethoven edition that spans from 2020 (one hundred and fifty years since his birth) to 2027 (the bicentenary of his death), in a series of new recordings by new musicians under the label. For years to come, this non-exhaustive edition will be a reflection of the interpretative trends from the 21st century. This first volume of the Complete Piano Concertos on period instruments (there will be another on modern instruments) brings together the two extremes of Beethoven’s repertoire, namely Concertos No. 2 and No. 5, the former of which was composed first.

Kristian Bezuidenhout’s exceptional musicality renders the dispute over instrument manufacturing seemingly artificial and fruitless, as he is at ease playing both early and modern pianos. After an inspired performance of Mozart’s complete Sonatas, we follow him as he journeys through the Beethoven Concertos, working closely with the Freiburg Barockorchester ensemble, for whom Bezuidenhout and Gottfried von der Goltz have been in charge of artistic direction since 2017-2018. This may not be a ground-breaking endeavour but what sets it apart is the meticulous attention to detail from Kristian Bezuidenhout and conductor Pablo Heras-Casado with regards to articulations and dynamics. The same can also be said for their choice of cadenzas, which the pianist often reinterprets using the same instrument for the complete work, resulting in a modern rendition played on a Viennese Conrad Graf piano dating from 1824. Confronted with musical practices from the end of the 18th century, the music of young Beethoven comes alive as never before. © François Hudry/Qobuz

Details of original recording : Recorded December 2017, Ensemblehaus Freiburg (Germany)

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