• New CD Note (Zarębski & Żeleński/Hyperion)
Monday, 3 December 2012 Leave a comment
I’ve been an advocate of Juliusz Zarębski’s Piano Quintet for years and so I’m delighted that Hyperion has just released this new recording. It’s accompanied by the Piano Quartet by his slightly older compatriot, Władysław Żeleński. If you haven’t come across either composer. you’re in for a treat. Zarębski in particular is a gem largely hidden outside his native Poland, even though in his short lifetime (he died of tuberculosis aged just 31) he was renowned across Europe as a stupendous pianist. A pupil of Liszt, he wrote mostly piano music, some of it stylistically advanced for the time. He composed the Piano Quintet in the last year of his life (1885), and I don’t think that I’m overstating it when I assert that it rivals any other example of the genre. One of these days, it will be more widely recognised for the masterpiece that it is.
Here’s the link to my booklet note for Zarębski and Żeleński, or you can scroll the CD NOTES tab above. Here’s another link, this time to an earlier post about the Zarębski Quintet, plus one I wrote a few weeks ago on Zarębski, Zarzycki and Żeleński.
NEWSFLASH! In its review, the BBC Music Magazine (Christmas issue 2012, p.93) awarded the CD ✭✭✭✭✭ for Performance and ✭✭✭✭✭ for Recording and also made it its ‘Chamber Choice’. Thoroughly deserved – bravo to Jonathan Plowright and the Szymanowski Quartet. It was also nice – and unexpected – to read the last sentence: ‘With the inclusion of Adrian Thomas’s expert sleeve notes, this represents another invaluable Hyperion release’!
NEWSFLASH no.2! On Radio 3’s CD Review on 9 February 2013, Andrew McGregor gave an enthusiastic response to this CD, also drawing on what he called “Adrian Thomas’s excellent notes”. Thanks Andrew!
NEWSFLASH no.3! Jonathan Plowright has passed on to me a ✭✭✭✭✭ online review in Audiophile Audition, dated 13 February 2013. It ends: ‘Adrian Thomas’s excellent liner [notes?] tell some intriguing musical stories[.]’.
NEWSFLASH no.4 and no.5! Another great review for this CD from Steve Arloff, including several references to the notes, including ‘the excellent booklet notes’: online review on MusicWeb-International. Previously on MusicWeb-Interntional, its Classical editor Rob Barnett also posted an enthusiastic review, including the comment: ‘Adrian Thomas provides the much-needed commentary and does so with both style and sterling content’.