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Piano Concertos nos. 1 & 2

Hannes Minnaar / Jan Willem de Vriend / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra

Piano Concertos nos. 1 & 2

Price: € 20.95
Format: SACD
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917271225
Catnr: CC 72712
Release date: 03 February 2016
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Label
Challenge Classics
UPC
0608917271225
Catalogue number
CC 72712
Release date
03 February 2016

""There is a lot in the sonics and basic approach to Beethoven in this disc that may serve that later work very well.""

Fanfare, 01-11-2016
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Artist(s)
Composer(s)
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About the album

Before we listen to the young Dutch pianist Hannes Minnaar play Beethoven’s first two piano concertos, it is perhaps interesting to see how another young pianist may have played them once, long ago – a German who lived in Vienna, a headstrong and temperamental genius. His name? Ludwig van Beethoven. His pupil, the famous composer of etudes and sensitive observer Carl Czerny, once described his playing: “[...] characterised by passionate strength, alternated with all the charm of a smooth cantabile. The expressiveness is often intensified to extremes, particularly when the music tends towards humour [...] Passages become extremely daring by use of the pedal [...] His playing does not possess that clean and brilliant elegance of certain other pianists. On the other hand, it was spirited, grand and, especially in the adagio, filled with emotion and romanticism.” Strength. Smoothness. Humour. Focus on these aspects and you will come close to Beethoven. Minnaar, De Vriend and The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra play the concertos in reverse order: first 2, then 1.Artistically, it is highly defensible: introduced as it were by the more balanced, more modest Piano Concerto no. 2, no. 1 radiates all the more festiveness (trumpets, clarinets and tympani have come to join the orchestra). Perhaps the lovely, gentle, almost feminine B flat major of Concerto no. 2 would not have been able to hold its own after the male and martial C major. But there is something else. You see, Piano Concerto no. 2 actually came first. It was composed earlier, at least in its initial version.
Het tweede deel uit een succesvolle serie met Pianoconcerten van Beethoven
Dit is het tweede album uit de serie met pianoconcerten van Beethoven, uitgevoerd door Hannes Minnaar, Jan Willem de Vriend en het Nederlands Symfonieorkest. Het bevat de eerste twee pianoconcerten.

Het is misschien interessant om voor het beluisteren van het album te kijken naar Beethovens eigen uitvoeringen van deze pianoconcerten. Zijn leerling Carl Czerny beschreef zijn speelstijl als “[...] characterised by passionate strength, alternated with all the charm of a smooth cantabile. The expressiveness is often intensified to extremes, particularly when the music tends towards humour.” Een pianist moet dus focussen op kracht, soepelheid en humor om de in de buurt te komen van de stijl van Beethoven.

Het tweede pianoconcert wordt op dit album voor het eerste gespeeld. Is dat niet vreemd? Er zijn in ieder geval goede redenen voor. Het Tweede Pianoconcert werd eerder gecomponeerd dan het eerste. Er is ook een artistieke reden: Het tweede pianoconcert is bescheiden, terwijl het eerste pianoconcert door het gebruik van trompetten, klarinetten en pauken feestelijk klinkt. Wellicht kan het lieflijke, haast vrouwelijk Bes groot van het tweede pianoconcert zich niet staande houden na het krijgshaftige en mannelijke C groot van het eerste pianoconcert.

Hannes minnaar is een van de meest interessante en gewilde pianisten van zijn generatie. Zijn albums zijn goed ontvangen door de critici. Zijn debuutalbum werd bekroond met een Edison. Bovendien is de pers ook enthousiast over het eerste deel uit deze albumreeks, met de laatste pianoconcerten van Beethoven. Zo schreef BBC Music Magazine: “Characterful accounts of Beethoven's final two piano concertos from a young Dutch pianist already making an impressive mark. His lively grace is matched by the sensitive Netherlands musicians and De Vriend”.
Nachdem Hannes Minaar, Jan Willem de Vriend und das Netherlands Symphony Orchestra in den vergangenen Jahren mit den beiden letzten Klavierkonzerten von Beethoven einen neuen Zyklus von Gesamteinspielungen begannen, folgen nun die beiden ersten Konzerte der Gattung. Und wieder führen sie die Nummerierung ad absurdum und drehen die Reihenfolge um: Auf das zweite Klavierkonzert folgt auf dieser Einspielung das erste. Zumindest numerisch. Künstlerisch gesehen wird diese Entscheidung jedoch mehr als plausibel. Während das zweite Klavierkonzert ausgewogen und maßvoll ist, strahlt das erste förmlich vor Festlichkeit mit seiner ausgeprägteren Orchestrierung in munterem C-Dur. Außerdem komponierte Beethoven die Urfassung des zweiten Konzertes bereits vor dem ersten.

Pressestimmen (Vol. 1, Klavierkonzerte 4&5)

"So spannungsgeladen und frisch kommt einem dieses pianistische Standard-Konzertrepertoire Beethovens selten und schon lange nicht mehr auf CD entgegen wie bei Hannes Minnaar, Jan Willem de Vriend und dem Netherlands Symphony Orchestra." BR Klassik

"Selten klangen diese beiden Schlachtrösser so "befreit", so punktgenau präzis, so ätherisch-schön und so visionär modern." Crescendo

"Hannes Minnaar weiß genau, worauf es ankommt: die Mischung zwischen lyrischen Momenten, die feinsinnig austariert werden, und den drastischen, für Beethoven typischen Ausbrüche, die kraftvolles Zupacken verlangen." Piano News

Artist(s)

The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra

The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra is based in Enschede, in the province of Overijssel. Performing at an international level, as evidenced by its highly acclaimed CDs and invitations for international tours, the orchestra is firmly rooted in society. Jan Willem de Vriend has been its artistic director and chief conductor since 2006. He will be succeeded by Ed Spanjaard in 2017. Under De Vriend’s leadership, the orchestra has expanded its repertoire to cover music from four centuries. Its use of period instruments in the Classical repertoire gives the orchestra a distinctive and highly individual character. The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra performs amongst others in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Enschede, Zwolle and Deventer. In addition, it has made successful tours of the United States, Spain and...
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The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra is based in Enschede, in the province of Overijssel. Performing at an international level, as evidenced by its highly acclaimed CDs and invitations for international tours, the orchestra is firmly rooted in society.
Jan Willem de Vriend has been its artistic director and chief conductor since 2006. He will be succeeded by Ed Spanjaard in 2017. Under De Vriend’s leadership, the orchestra has expanded its repertoire to cover music from four centuries. Its use of period instruments in the Classical repertoire gives the orchestra a distinctive and highly individual character.
The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra performs amongst others in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Enschede, Zwolle and Deventer. In addition, it has made successful tours of the United States, Spain and England and it often works with the Dutch National Touring Opera Company. In its home town Enschede, the orchestra builds on a symphonic tradition of more than 80 years, and it is known as one of the most modern and entrepreneurial orchestras in the Netherlands.
The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra created a number of ensembles, such as a chamber orchestra, the Baroque Academy of the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra (BANSO) and various chamber music ensembles. The orchestra’s commitment to expanding its social relevance is also reflected in the large number of projects in which education is a key element.
The orchestra has worked with distinguished conductors, such as its former chief conductor Jaap van Zweden, Vasily Petrenko, Edo de Waart, Claus Peter Flor and Tan Dun. It also has accompanied many celebrated soloists, including Gidon Kremer, Ronald Brautigam, Natalia Gutman, Charlotte Margiono, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Thomas Zehetmair.

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Jan Willem de Vriend

Jan Willem de Vriend, designated “a godsend from the Netherlands” by the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, is driven by the pioneering spirit of historically informed perfomance practice. As music director of the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam, which he founded in 1982, he specialised in repertoire of the 17th and 18th centuries, reviving a wealth of rarely heard works through historically informed performances on modern instruments, praised by Gramophone magazine for their “technical finesse and a lively feeling for characterization”. An award-winner for his creative contribution to classical music, Jan Willem de Vriend has more than 50,000 followers on Spotify and is in demand as a conductor around the world, appearing regularly with such orchestras as the Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Residentie Orkest...
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Jan Willem de Vriend, designated “a godsend from the Netherlands” by the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, is driven by the pioneering spirit of historically informed perfomance practice. As music director of the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam, which he founded in 1982, he specialised in repertoire of the 17th and 18th centuries, reviving a wealth of rarely heard works through historically informed performances on modern instruments, praised by Gramophone magazine for their “technical finesse and a lively feeling for characterization”.
An award-winner for his creative contribution to classical music, Jan Willem de Vriend has more than 50,000 followers on Spotify and is in demand as a conductor around the world, appearing regularly with such orchestras as the Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Residentie Orkest Den Haag, Belgian National Orchestra, Tonhalle Zurich, Orchestre National de Lyon, Bergen Philharmonic, Warsaw Philharmonic, the symphony orchestras of Netherlands Radio and Hessischer Rundfunk (Frankfurt Radio Symphony), Melbourne Symphony, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony and Hong Kong Philharmonic. He is Principal Conductor Designate of the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, and Principal Guest Conductor of the City of Kyoto Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Stuttgart Philharmonic and Orchestre National de Lille, and former Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya and the Brabant Orchestra.
For the Challenge Classics label, de Vriend and the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra have recorded the complete Mendelssohn symphonies and all Beethoven’s symphonies and concertos with, among others, pianist Hannes Minnaar and violinist Liza Ferschtman. De Vriend’s interpretation of the Symphony No 7 prompted Classic FM to admire “a bounding flair that does real justice to the composer’s capacity for joy”. A further landmark of his recorded catalogue is his complete recording of the Schubert symphonies with the Residentie Orkest Den Haag.
De Vriend’s collaborative spirit is equally evident in his work for the stage, notably with opera director Eva Buchmann and Combattimento Consort Amsterdam. In addition to works by Monteverdi, Haydn, Handel and Telemann, their productions in Europe and the USA have included staged versions of Bach’s ‘Hunting’ and ‘Coffee’ Cantatas at the Bachfest Leipzig, and operas by Mozart, Rossini, Verdi and Cherubini, among them Mozart’s Don Giovanni und Rossini’s La gazzetta, both toured in Switzerland. De Vriend has also conducted operatic productions in Amsterdam (with the Nederlandse Reisopera), Barcelona, Strasbourg, Lucerne, Schwetzingen and Bergen.

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Composer(s)

Ludwig van Beethoven

Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers. His best-known compositions include nine symphonies, five piano concertos, one violin concerto, 32 piano sonatas, 16 string quartets, his great Mass the Missa solemnis, and one opera, Fidelio. Together with Mozart and Haydn, he was part of the First Viennese School.    Born in Bonn, then the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and part of the Holy Roman Empire, Beethoven displayed his musical talents at an early age and was taught by his father Johann van Beethoven and by composer and conductor Christian Gottlob...
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Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers. His best-known compositions include nine symphonies, five piano concertos, one violin concerto, 32 piano sonatas, 16 string quartets, his great Mass the Missa solemnis, and one opera, Fidelio. Together with Mozart and Haydn, he was part of the First Viennese School. Born in Bonn, then the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and part of the Holy Roman Empire, Beethoven displayed his musical talents at an early age and was taught by his father Johann van Beethoven and by composer and conductor Christian Gottlob Neefe. At the age of 21 he moved to Vienna, where he began studying composition with Joseph Haydn, and gained a reputation as a virtuoso pianist. He lived in Vienna until his death. By his late 20s his hearing began to deteriorate, and by the last decade of his life he was almost totally deaf. In 1811 he gave up conducting and performing in public but continued to compose; many of his most admired works come from these last 15 years of his life.

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Press

"There is a lot in the sonics and basic approach to Beethoven in this disc that may serve that later work very well."
Fanfare, 01-11-2016

No Quote     
Artamag, 04-10-2016

"De Vriend and Minnaar are a good duo. They give each other space, but - if necessary - they are firmly on each others skin."
Katholiek Nieuwsblad, 30-9-2016

Plaatpaal Radio 4
NTR Radio 4 Plaatpaal, 11-7-2016

Interview
Klassieke Zaken, 01-7-2016

"[...] Again, his range of touch is highly effective, and there is a pleasing mix of finesse and drive in the concerto’s closing moments."
gramophone, 01-5-2016

LUISTER 10 ***** " What a joy to listen to! Everything is right. [...] "
Luister, 08-4-2016

"As a duo, Minnaar and De Vriend fill each other in perfectly."
Piano Wereld, 05-4-2016

" [...] You only really experience good music during a concert. [...] "
Piano Wereld, 05-4-2016

Luister 10 - "This seems to be a complete series that belongs in the premiere league of the discography of these concertos."
Luister Magazine, 01-4-2016

"Minaar interprets both pieces with rare calm and composure, giving them an almost narrative character."
Crescendo, 01-4-2016

"The first two concerts on this Super Audio cd sound beautifully balanced."
Nederlands Dagblad, 18-3-2016

"The second cd, with the concerts nr. 1 and 2, is just such a high level as the legacy 4 and 5. Minnaars Beethovens are Kader, unafraid, decidedly and almost carelessly virtuoso, but he also leaves room for tenderness and vulnerability. Beautiful."
Het Parool, 14-3-2016

"The recordings of both concerts are beautiful.The cd has SACD-quality. This gives it  a fullness in sound which is compelling. In short, wonderful cd. "   
Friesch Dagblad, 10-3-2016

"The symbiosis between pianist, Orchestra and conductor is at triumvirate lover, the friend and the Dutch musicians just ideal. The one-time Orchestra sound, the slightly different mood of the piano, but above all the musical poetry of Hannes Minnaar make this Beethoven integral even for the final conclusion to a one-time event where referred to is going to be for a long time."
Opus klassiek, 06-3-2016

"The musical covenant that the pianist and the conductor have concluded, is clearly audible. Minnaar gives great direction to everything he plays. So here too, and his solo cadenza in the second concerto is a smart example of that. De Vriend stirs it all up wonderfully."
Trouw, 19-2-2016

"His style may perhaps best be characterized as sensitively romantic, musicall inventive, with much tonal beauty and fluent precision. Power play doesn't seem to be Minnaar's prime trade; his 'power' comes from well-chosen accentuation and subtle shifting from piano to forte, adequately supported and, where needed intensified by the Vriend"
HRAudio.net, 09-2-2016

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Often bought together with..

Alles Walzer, einmal anders
Dora Deliyska
Ángeles y Diablos
Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble
Piano Concerto No. 3
Hannes Minnaar / Jan Willem de Vriend / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra
Six Piano Sonatas
Einav Yarden
La Furia
Mayke Rademakers

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