Music for two pianos
and orchestra -
enjoyed by RON BIERMAN
'... all the technique these sometimes difficult pieces require ...'
Although the notes don't provide a recording date, I believe this is a reissue of a
1995 Albany disc. Three cheers for the programming and the performers in any event!
The Poulenc Concerto for Two Pianos and Orchestra is the only well-known piece and it
receives a cleverly different performance, competitive with any. The opening zips
along with sparkling, clear articulation in a style more typical for early Prokofiev
than for a member of the less ferocious Les Six. Even the lyrical second movement
sounds a little less Parisian and more romantically Russian than usual. I've always
admired one of its simple, wistfully descending themes
[listen -- track 2, 1:04-2:04].
The Berezowsky Fantasy for Two Pianos and Orchestra in one movement is the
shortest of the three pieces here and this is its first performance on disk. It's even
more obviously related to Prokofiev and Rachmaninov. Berezowsky was born in Russia in
1900, trained in St Petersburg and immigrated to the United States while in his
twenties. His once popular symphonies and concertos have disappeared from the repertoire.
The Fantasy, though entertaining, perhaps suggests why. It reminds me of some of
the pseudo-concertos written for films with plots about struggling classical musicians.
The dual pianists work up some excitement, but the piece hasn't the memorable tunes of
the Warsaw Concerto and others.
Copyright © 20 September 2003
Ron Bierman, San Diego, USA