Haydn: Keyboard Concerto in G, Hob. XVIII:4; Keyboard Concerto in F, Hob. XVIII:7; Keyboard Concerto in D, Hob. XVIII:11

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3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Haydn
LABELS: Virgin
WORKS: Keyboard Concerto in G, Hob. XVIII:4; Keyboard Concerto in F, Hob. XVIII:7; Keyboard Concerto in D, Hob. XVIII:11
PERFORMER: Mikhail Pletnev (piano); Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie
CATALOGUE NO: VC 5 45196 2
First the good news: impeccable pianistic technique, marvellous pearly tone, crisp performances, sophisticated music-making, a good recording.

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The bad news: Pletnev uses an inept edition (Peters) for the G major concerto, with probably spurious parts for oboes and horns. There ought to be a bassoon with the bass (there is not). The second concerto in F is probably not by Haydn (an early manuscript is attributed to Wagenseil, Marie Antoinette’s teacher). And the third concerto also uses an out-of-date edition (Peters) – the Henle text is the one to use.

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The questionable news: Pletnev improvises some very modern cadenzas. They are quite fun but purists will have a fit. What else can I say? HC Robbins Landon