Beethoven Concertos

Author: 
Richard Osborne
Beethoven Concertos, Howard ShelleyBeethoven Concertos, Howard Shelley

BEETHOVEN Concertos

  • Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 4
  • Concerto for Violin, Cello, Piano and Orchestra

This is another excellent disc in the Tring/RPO Beethoven series (Piano Concertos Nos. 2 and 3 were reviewed in 1/97). It is beautifully conducted throughout and Michael Roll is an extremely alert and sensitive soloist in the Fourth Piano Concerto. Equally, a team of soloists has been assembled for the Triple Concerto that really is a team, musically distinguished but modest too, no mere aggregation of stars. The playing is fresh, alert, sensitive and full of joy. And the recording? That too is superb. It is a recording in which there is a place for everything but where everything has its place. “Very comfortable” was how our distinguished Audio Editor described it when he was here the other day sorting out some errant cabling in my system. So, are there no drawbacks? Hardly any. I could, I suppose, point to an occasional roughness of intonation in Kantorow’s playing in the Triple Concerto and the occasional moment of stiffness in Roll’s detailing of some of the stellar passagework of the first movement of the Fourth Concerto, but that would be to set up a Council of Perfection into which other things in both performances (including much of Wallfisch’s contribution) would be openly admitted.
The Triple Concerto has occasionally been paired on CD with the Fifth Piano Concerto, but I have not come across this coupling before. It works very well. This is a super bargain in every way, a disc I know I shall want to return to for the high finish of its musicianship and its irresistible freshness.'

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