Inspiration & Craftsmanship

« previous episode | next episode »

Thursday, December 05, 2013

This week, David Dubal reaches deep into his record collection to feature various solo piano literature, including some comparative performances, all surrounding the idea of craftsmanship. Highlighted on this episode are Beethoven's Rage over a lost penny, Manuel de Falla's Ritual Dance of Fire, as well as Rachmaninoff's Musical Moment in E flat minor.

The unexpected elements which make art are perhaps the true inspirations for composers. And composing becomes a craft after it's been made through labor, heartache, and intense observation.

On this program, we have music blooming from many different kinds of inspiration, planting the seeds for profound impressions. These poet-pianists translate their inspirations into their own language of music. These pieces bare their own souls through idiomatic expressions, some of which become very transparent by the players.




Rondo a capriccio for Piano in G major, Op. 129 "Rage over a lost penny"

Ludwig van Beethoven

Artur Schnabel



Intermezzo in E flat minor Op. 118 No. 6

Johannes Brahms

Walter Gieseking

History - The International Music Company


Berceuse for Piano in D flat major, B 154/Op. 57

Frédéric Chopin

Raoul Koczalski



Berceuse for Piano in D flat major, B 154/Op. 57

Frédéric Chopin

Maurizio Pollini



Moments musicaux (6), Op. 16: no 2, Allegretto in E flat minor

Sergei Rachmaninov

Sergei Rachmaninov

Rca Victor Gold Seal


Organ Chorale Prelude "Rejoice, Beloved Christians" BWV 734 "Nun freut euch, lieben Christen g'mein"

J.S. Bach

Ferruccio Busoni

Columbia / Arbiter


Siciliano from Flute Sonata in E major, transcription for piano in E flat major, BWV 1031

J.S. Bach - Wilhelm Kempff

Wilhelm Kempff

Deutsche Grammophon


Siciliano from Flute Sonata in E major, transcription for piano in E flat major, BWV 1031

J.S. Bach - Wilhelm Kempff

Dinu Lipatti

Opus Kura


El amor brujo: Danza rituel del fuego "Ritual Fire Dance"

Manuel de Falla

Benita Meshulam

Brilliant Classics


Children's Corner: IV. The Snow is Dancing

Claude Debussy

Arturo Benadetti Michelangeli

History - The International Music Company


Children's Corner: IV. The Snow is Dancing

Claude Debussy

André Watts



Valse romantique

Karol Szymanowski

Peter Froundjian



Lyric Pieces Book 5, Op. 54: No 3, Troll's March (March of the Dwarfs);

Papillon, Op.43 No.1;

Elfin Dance, Op.12 No.4;

Berceuse, Op.38 No.1

Edvard Grieg

Artur Rubinstein

BMG Classics

The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Comments [2]

Silversalty from Brooklyn!/story/307304-southpaws/

Felix Blumenfeld-Left Hand Etude Op.36 (A flat) - Simon Barere, piano

Dec. 09 2013 11:25 AM
Silversalty from Brooklyn

The Rachmaninov piece may be an example of supreme Olympian piano playing but musically I'd probably side with Stravinsky and hope it would end quickly.

The "Bach" Busoni piece also involves fast playing but unfortunately with the poor quality of initial recording methods bass seems to dominate and the melodic voice is almost unheard. Maybe that company that does robot piano reproductions of old recordings could make a modern version.

This program was in the style of the old show with multiple comparative performances, though Dubal seemed gentler in criticisms, never really dissing an interpretation, which is probably right in many cases. Beauty is in the eye and ear of the beholder.

Of course regarding comparative performances I often have a mythical Glenn Gould playing, and especially with the fast pieces, where the left and right hand voices seem somewhat fudged, I'm probably too critical even of the greatest pianists ever.

This reminds me of a piece on a show from months or more ago of a one handed player who played multiple voices with superhuman clarity - incredibly "articulated." Can't remember the specifics - have to search for the show.

As always, an excellent program.

Dec. 09 2013 11:17 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.