Wigglesworth: Brahms - The Piano Concertos (24/96 FLAC)
Wigglesworth: Brahms – The Piano Concertos (24/96 FLAC)

Composer: Johannes Brahms
Performer: Stephen Hough
Orchestra: Mozarteumorchester Salzburg
Conductor: Mark Wigglesworth
Audio CD
Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC (tracks)
Label: Hyperion
Size: 1.59 GB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)
Piano Concerto No 1 in D minor, Op 15
01. 1. Maestoso
02. 2. Adagio
03. 3. Rondo- Allegro non troppo

Piano Concerto No 2 in B flat major, Op 83
04. 1. Allegro non troppo
05. 2. Allegro appassionato
06. 3. Andante
07. 4. Allegretto grazioso

Stephen Hough, piano
Mozarteumorchester Salzburg
Mark Wigglesworth, conductor

Recorded: 11-15 January 2013 at Salzburger Festspielhaus, Austria

This attractively priced double set is one of Stephen Hough’s most important recordings. ‘Britain’s greatest living pianist’ (The Mail on Sunday) is joined by the Mozarteumorchester Salzburg and international conductor Mark Wigglesworth in their Hyperion debut for Brahms’s Piano Concertos. These works are among the greatest in the genre, and shore up Brahms’s reputation as both a symphonist and a piano composer. Separated by twenty-two years and widely differing in their reception (the first was scorned and the second a huge success), they are monumental in scale, impassioned and truly romantic, forward-looking in form and requiring both great virtuosity and intimacy from the pianist. Stephen Hough has performed them in concert for many years to ecstatic acclaim: this new recording is surely one of his most desirable offerings.

‘I ended up delighted by and in complete admiration of Hough’s boldness. He has become a warmer player of increased range in Brahms, and unafraid to take risks … the concertos call for a brilliant, interesting and capricious personality who will make them compelling as discourse. I cannot believe Brahms would have expected anything else’ –Gramophone

‘Stephen Hough has proved himself a superb Brahms player in various discs of the solo piano music, and this very satisfying double album of the two Concertos confirms and augments his reputation. Clearly working in absolute rapport with Mark Wigglesworth … Hough brings an unusually wide range of keyboard colour to bear on Brahms’s piano writing. Added to that his complete understanding of the broadest trajectory and subtlest nuances of these works is reflected in his subtle flexibility of tempo and dynamics to underline expressive points that in some other performances go for nothing … this admirable set richly deserves its five stars’ –BBC Music Magazine

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