Soundbite 60: A sixty-word précis-review of the latest CD releases

Variations on a Theme by Paganini, Op.35 – Books I & II
Arabesque in C, Op.18
Études symphoniques, Op.13 [1852 Version: revised in 1861, post Schumann's death, to include etudes III & IX from 1837 Version]
Études symphoniques – Appendix [First published 1873]
Jean-Yves Thibaudet (piano)

Recorded July 1994 in Henry Wood Hall, London
476 8503
Duration: 65 minutes
Reviewed: February 2007
Thibaudet at his most ingratiating: style and solidity combined with glamour and sparkle. But never facile. The Brahms can seem a bit rushed and over-emphatic, sometimes, but the overall sweep of the interpretation is utterly convincing. The tone of Schumann’s delightful Arabesque is just right, however, making it a perfect entrée to the main course: a poetic, reverie-filled Études symphoniques.


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