Piano Music Of Dinu Lipatti

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COMPOSERS: Dinu Lipatti
ALBUM TITLE: Piano Music Of Dinu Lipatti
WORKS: Concertino en style classique; Sonatine for the left hand; Sonata in D minor; Nocturne, Op. 6; Nocturne in A minor; Fantasie, Op. 8; Albéniz (arr. Lipatti): Navarra; JS Bach (arr. Lipatti): Pastorale in Fm BWV 590; Cantata, BWV 208
PERFORMER: Luiza Borac (piano)


The Romanian pianist Luiza Borac made her name (and gained a BBC Music Magazine Award in 2007) with her recordings of her great compatriot George Enescu. Now she turns her attention to Enescu’s short-lived godson and protégé, Dinu Lipatti (1917-1950). Lipatti is best remembered as a pianist of magical gifts. But after his death, his teacher Nadia Boulanger declared that when his compositions had all been printed, it would ‘become obvious that he was really a composer’. 

Little of Borac’s set does anything to justify that claim. The Concertino, in the classical style with chamber orchestra, was written in Lipatti’s late teens. It’s a charming exercise in updating Bach and Scarlatti, but with only brief moments of Stravinskian creativity. The even earlier Sonata, the fluent Sonatina for the Left Hand, the reworking of Albéniz’s Navarra, and some Bach arrangements reveal only a predictable pianistic flair. But two plaintive Nocturnes strike a more personal note; and the five-movement, half-hour Fantaisie is a major work of haunting invention.

Borac plays with technical assurance and the utmost sensitivity. The London recording of the Concertino is a little lacking in intimacy; the Berlin solo recordings have a church acoustic that blurs the textures, but more often enhances the beauty of Lipatti’s melodic writing and Borac’s playing.


Anthony Burton