An outstanding set of recordings by the pianist Daniel Levy
The recordings are a major new series that gather together the piano works, chamber music with piano, lieder and works for piano and orchestra of Robert Schumann, which Daniel Levy has devoted himself to studying throughout his life and career as a musician.
The series features 12 albums including new releases and materials collected from outstanding out of catalogue recordings, including live concerts in European venues. Daniel Levy is recognized as one of the finest interpreters of Schumann in the world today and the series showcases his unique talent through lovingly constructed recordings of unrivalled quality and virtuosity.
DANIEL LEVY PLAYS SCHUMANN VOL. 1, the first piano solo album of this outstanding series, contains some of Schumann’s most beloved masterworks, including Kreisleriana op. 16, Albumblätter op. 124 and Variations sur un Étude de Chopin. Also available at this time will be the critically acclaimed album SCHUMANN LIEDER with the famed Austrian baritone Wolfgang Holzmair and the SCHUMANN PIANO CONCERTO with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and the Philharmonia Orchestra. The latter album was described by BBC Music Magazine as:
An all-time great recording…lovingly phrased and exultantly voiced.
BBC MUSIC MAGAZINE
Additionally, this exciting series includes seven solo piano recordings and a number of unforgettable artistic collaborations alongside the celebrated clarinetist Antony Morf, the polish violinist Nicolás Chumachenco, the soprano Cristina Mantese, the oboist Pietro Borgonovo, the horn player Marcello Rota and the Zürich Quartet.
The last album of the series is a 1986 live recording of a concert in Venice with the Zurich Quartet.
Daniel Levy’s interpretations emerge with strength and Romanticism, fulfilling the emotional, intellectual and spiritual challenges of Schumann’s music.
This is how the critic Bernard Jacobson has described the SCHUMANN SERIES:
But it is with a composer to whom he has devoted particular attention, ROBERT SCHUMANN, that Levy seems to identify with especial conviction. If you listen to some of his most recent recordings, you will find Schumann’s personality and his compendious artistic range illuminated with fresh and perhaps unsurpassed vividness. We already know, from his most familiar works, what an intensely human composer Schumann is–at once mercurial and gemütlich, dreamy and epigrammatic. There is rhythmic fluidity in the writing, with its frequently offbeat accents, and a sometimes surprising richness of polyphony that contradicts the supposed verticality of the piano’s natural textures. Yet it’s not often that the musical character is realized with such force and clarity as, for instance, in Levy’s performance of the seventh movement of Kreisleriana, combining sheer rhythmic impetus with unshakable poise, and continuity of pulse with delicacy of paragraphing.
The pianist achieves light and shade even in this hell-for-leather piece; and that restrained ending, by the way, is the kind of thing that Levy turns to eloquent account in his playing of Schumann–the composer’s almost Ivesian way of closing a boisterous piece with a brief slower and lighter conclusion. There are other Schumannesque characteristics, too, that we may not previously have noticed, but that come to the fore in some of the less well-known works Levy has recorded. Listening to the eighth of the Albumblätter, or Album Leaves, Opus 124, I’m almost tempted–if this isn’t too much of an insult–to suggest that Schumann’s exploitation of unevenly truncated phrases and dissociative textures, searchingly rendered by Levy, points forward to some of Schoenberg’s piano music.
BERNARD JACOBSON +Read more
ALBUMS IN THE SERIES / RELEASE DATES:
Kreisleriana op. 16
Albumblätter op. 124
Variations sur un Nocturne de Chopin
Daniel Levy, piano