WORKS: 24 Preludes, Op. 28; Ballade in F minor, Op. 52.
PERFORMER: Ivan Moravec (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: SU 3165-2 AAD Reissue
Ivan Moravec has had a long and distinguished career in Eastern Europe and has been compared to giants like Serkin and Arrau, but his recordings have been few, and a newly reissued disc is welcome. He plays with authority, and his account of the 24 Preludes is, on the whole, well conceived, though his rubato in some of the slower pieces (for example, the E minor and the B minor) is excessive and I have strong reservations about his handling of the C minor Largo. The same rubato mars the opening section of the F minor Ballade (surely one of Chopin’s most inspired utterances), and his over-indulgence in bravura is inappropriate for Chopin’s music. Nevertheless, there is much here to enjoy.