V3: Early Recordings

Album cover art for upc 760623217222
Catalog: 6502172-2


What a talent! Hélène Grimaud was just 15 years old when she recorded Rachmaninoff's 2nd Piano Sonata for DENON, together with the Études-Tableaux and two Préludes. The description "child prodigy" is only partly true; in fact, this early recording, which is now available again for the first time in a long time thanks to the cooperation with MDG, shows a mature artistic personality who is not afraid to explore the abysses of this key work of the early 20th century. Just two years later, the young pianist presented heavyweight works by Schumann, Liszt and Chopin; one can only say hats off! For Schumann's F minor Sonata, "dedicated by Florestan and Eusebius" to his beloved Clara, concentrates the composer's highly romantic discord in a very confined space. Very freely conceived, both sonata and fantasy in formal terms, the work demands a great overview and a deep feeling for the atmospheric world of the 19th century. Liszt's "Après une lecture de Dante" from "Années de pèlerinage" is no different - the complex work already bears the ambivalence in its subtitle: "Fantasia quasi sonata" evokes associations with Beethoven and Dante's "Divine Comedy" and opens up a whole cosmos of allusions. These are not so obvious in Chopin's Ballade in G minor, and yet the reading as a national Polish composition still has an enormous impact today. Even in her younger years, Hélène Grimaud succeeded in tracing the intensity of these masterpieces, both in the concert hall and in the studio. With this third volume, all the early recordings of this unique artist are now available again.

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