Sunday, September 29, 2013

Shura Cherkassy, one of the greatest of the greats


Partita in E-Minor

by Johann Sebastian Bach

Shura Cherkassky, piano

6 comments:

  1. This is a lovely way to start Sunday morning.

    Enjoyed it with my coffee.

    Thanks for introducing me to Shura Cherkassy.

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  2. I'm glad you enjoyed it, Ms Shaw. Shura Cherkassky has quickly become one of my all-time favorite artists. I only wish I had discovered him sooner. He had only been a name to me until I discovered him on YouTube a few short months ago.

    Wikipedia in their usual dry fashion describes him thusly:

    Shura Cherkassky was an American classical pianist known for his performances of the romantic repertoire. His playing was characterized by a virtuoso technique and singing piano tone. For much of his later life, Cherkassky resided in Britain.

    Born: October 7, 1909, Odessa, Ukraine
    Died: December 27, 1995, London, United Kingdom
    Last album: Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3 Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 2
    Education: Curtis Institute of Music


    Because he had always been billed as "The Last of the Great Romantics" I was delighted to discover that could play Bach and other early music in good style with great integrity, and much charm and character.

    His Chopin playing is superb. In that repertoire he rivals Novaes and Cortot.

    Most remarkably in the last few years of his life he gave frequent concerts in Japan. Fortunately several of these were recorded or videotaped and offer conclusive proof that Cherkassky was doing his very best work right until the day he died.

    This live performance of the E-Minor Partita, however, was recorded n 1968 when Cherkassky was merely 57 years old.

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  4. Mr. Free Thinke,

    Apropos of today's music, I thought you'd enjoy reading THIS.

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  5. Thank you, Ma'am. John Eliot Gardiner's reading of Handel's Messiah made me realize fully just how great a work that hoary old chestnut really is -- or could be when performed in a disciplined fashion by highly trained professionals with meticulous attention to detail in an immaculately clean, bright texture.

    It makes me eager to hear more of his Bach, though Bach is more passionate, more personally involved with his texts and as warmly human as Beethoven and some of the later romantics when rightly understood.

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  6. Very light, precise touch to my ear.

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