TCHAIKOVSKY Rare Transcriptrions and Paraphrases Vol 2
Anthony Goldstone follows an initial volume of operatic transcriptions with arrangements of music from the ballets, again including a number of first recordings. Once more he evokes, both in his magisterial performances and exemplary accompanying essay, an age of outsize virtuosity, of a Russian tradition that took its key inspiration from Liszt. Paul Pabst, for example, studied with Liszt and his students included Goldenweiser, Medtner, Igumnov and Lyapunov – a goodly gathering by any reckoning. Siloti, too, studied with Liszt, and the roll of glory continues, though with Percy Grainger as a dazzling outsider.
Today it is still fashionable to take a dim view of such pianistic bling and finery; but given with Goldstone’s formidable command and eloquence, we may well be the losers. Hear him in the opening of Grainger’s ‘Waltz of the Flowers’ – music which combines blockbuster gestures with a teasing elegance and sophistication – and you will find yourself irresistibly swept forward by such relish and exhilaration. Again, Goldstone takes the shoals of notes in the Pabst paraphrase by storm; and if there are moments when a greater degree of light and shade would have added to the sense of occasion, there is no doubting his conviction in such daunting and specialised repertoire.