Friday, April 01, 2011

Look what I found today - not a joke

A Friday historical with a twist: here is something I have never heard before, namely Vladimir Horowitz playing Faure. This recording comes from a recital that the great Russian pianist gave in Ann Arbor in 1977. It is Faure's last and darkest Nocturne, No.13, written in 1921 and completed not long after the death of Saint-Saens. Horowitz gives short shrift to the misleading legend that late Faure must sound obscure, restrained and difficult: he draws out all the emotional devastation in the death-haunted heart of this music and its concentration and power come bowling out with immense impact. I find it breathtaking. You?

(Update, 5 April - there's been some to-ing and fro-ing over whether or not this recording was in fact commercially released, but I'm now assured by the owner of this Youtube channel that it wasn't. Please see the comments boxes!)