Mussorgsky/Taneyev/Medtner

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5.0 out of 5 star rating 5.0

COMPOSERS: Mussorgsky/Taneyev/Medtner
LABELS: DG
WORKS: Pictures at an Exhibition; Prelude and Fugue in G sharp minor; Forgotten Melodies, Op. 38/3 & 6, Op. 39/4 & 5
PERFORMER: Lilya Zilberstein (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: 437 805-2 DDD
The young Russian Lilya Zilberstein is a wonderful new presence in the pianistic world and her latest recording of Russian music shows her at her best. This piano playing is full of deep sensitivity, strength and gentleness. Careful consideration of the musical text and clarity of texture are both here in plenty, but never interfere with her very natural musical warmth. Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition is given a thoughtful, inward reading; some of her tempi are slower than comparable recordings, but this brings the advantage that certain textual details which would otherwise be obscured are clearly audible. There is a real sense of progression in the recurring Promenades (in other performances often given merely as a link) with the feeling that the exhibition-goer is truly moved and affected by these pictures. Zilberstein does not draw orchestral timbres from the piano, but she leaves the listener impressed by the completeness and variety of the piano as an instrument in its own right. The fillers, infrequently played works by Taneyev and Medtner, are rewarding both for the opportunity to hear these delightful pieces and for Zilberstein’s extraordinary combination of lightness, clarity and power in the Taneyev Fugue and warmly Romantic shading in the Medtner miniatures. Recorded sound is superb throughout. Jessica Duchen

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