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Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec? (Read 3988 times)

Offline steve jones

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Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
« on: June 10, 2006, 12:21:04 AM »

These have to be among my favorite romantic piano pieces, and I have numerous recordings of them. But of all, I find myself come back to Pollini's over and over again. He really does have a way with Chopin - technically brilliant, yet more subtle than others. The rubato is not so aggressive, and it generally sounds more aesthetically pleasing (to me atleast).

I also like Kissin's, and Richter's too.

How would you put up as your favorite performances of these wonderful pieces?

SJ

Sheet music to download and print: Ballades by Chopin



Offline presto agitato

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #1 on: June 10, 2006, 12:49:24 AM »
Vladimir Ashkernazy
The masterpiece tell the performer what to do, and not the performer telling the piece what it should be like, or the cocomposer what he ought to have composed.

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Offline lisztisforkids

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #2 on: June 10, 2006, 01:01:32 AM »
Vladimir Ashkernazy

 Ashkenazy is very good.
we make God in mans image

Offline steve jones

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #3 on: June 10, 2006, 02:33:41 AM »

Really? I did like his rec's but hardly my favorite.

SJ

Offline presto agitato

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #4 on: June 10, 2006, 02:50:47 AM »
A lot of people say that Zimerman´s is the best ever.
The masterpiece tell the performer what to do, and not the performer telling the piece what it should be like, or the cocomposer what he ought to have composed.

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Offline jre58591

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #5 on: June 10, 2006, 03:10:03 AM »
A lot of people say that Zimerman´s is the best ever.
i agree wholeheartedly. i have a video of him playing all 4, and i can say its one of teh best videos i have.
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Offline pianiststrongbad

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #6 on: June 10, 2006, 03:48:07 AM »
I saw Zimerman perform no. 4 a few months ago, wow that was amazing.  I have the video that is floating on the web of him playing the complete ballades, they are definately great.  Though I too find myself going back to Pollini.

Offline mephisto

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #7 on: June 10, 2006, 07:58:25 AM »
i agree wholeheartedly. i have a video of him playing all 4, and i can say its one of teh best videos i have.

SOOOOOO restrained.

Offline sergei r

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #8 on: June 10, 2006, 08:54:17 AM »
Rubinstein.
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Offline stevie

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #9 on: June 10, 2006, 03:39:30 PM »
im not a big fan of pussy renditions, i enjoy them to a degree, i like what bolet and zimerman can provide, but each ballade must not be a restricted world, they must all encompass a range of sonority from PPP to FFF and a range of feeling from extreme calm, to ferocious fury.

all round bests -

bal 1 - wunder

bal 2 - richter

bal 3 - friedman

bal 4 - hofmann

Offline Kassaa

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #10 on: June 10, 2006, 04:09:34 PM »
Richter for 2 and 4, I would be delighted if you upload the third ballade from Friedman and the fourth from Hofmann stevie.
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Offline stevie

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #11 on: June 12, 2006, 02:30:28 AM »
http://dacomme.dasdc.net/bal3.mp3

the bal 4 is harder to find...maybe someone else can provide

Offline mwarner1

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #12 on: June 12, 2006, 03:17:43 AM »
It's funny so many people are praising Pollini's set... I am definitely a Pollini fan, and his Ballades are certainly fine, but they are not my favorites by any means. I much prefer Rubinstein, Zimerman, and Ashkenazy in these pieces. For the third Ballade, I also have Richter's live performance from the "Richter reDiscovered" CD -- although at first I found it totally rushed and unusual, it's become my favorite recording of the piece.

Offline Kassaa

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #13 on: June 12, 2006, 05:34:02 AM »
http://dacomme.dasdc.net/bal3.mp3

the bal 4 is harder to find...maybe someone else can provide
Thanks, sounds awesome :)
Everything will pass, and the world will perish but the Waldstein Sonata will remain.

Offline icarus89

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #14 on: June 12, 2006, 06:05:13 AM »
I go for Zimerman. I watched him perform no.4 too - just yesterday. I don't have any of his CDs, and I really regretted that I didn't bring any money 'cause they were sellin his CDs after the recital. But then, I just ordered his CDs. Hahaha.

Offline jre58591

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #15 on: June 12, 2006, 06:14:08 AM »
SOOOOOO restrained.
zimerman is the best chopin interpreter ever. i could care less if im restrained. hes an awesome pianist in all aspects.
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Offline berceuse

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #16 on: June 12, 2006, 06:16:12 AM »
Besides the already mentioned pianists, some of my favorite underrated recordings are by Ignaz Tiegerman (pupil of Friedman and Leschetizky), Leo Sirota (pupil of Busoni), Vladimir de Pachmann, and Samuel Feinberg.

Also, I strongly recommend listening to Ingrid Fliter's Chopin. I had the opportunity of hearing her perform Ballade no. 4 and it was beautiful. It was very comparable to Zimerman's recording. If anybody wants it you can PM me.
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Offline mephisto

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #17 on: June 12, 2006, 06:51:57 AM »
zimerman is the best chopin interpreter ever. i could care less if im restrained. hes an awesome pianist in all aspects.
Not you. Him.

Offline jre58591

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #18 on: June 12, 2006, 06:55:25 AM »
Not you. Him.
he doesnt seem restrained to me. he seems so at ease at the piano. he is also very sensitive and emotional in both his playing and expressions. but thats just my opinion.
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Offline mephisto

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #19 on: June 12, 2006, 10:19:36 AM »
he doesnt seem restrained to me. he seems so at ease at the piano. he is also very sensitive and emotional in both his playing and expressions. but thats just my opinion.

Yes he is an amazing pianist. I am only talking about the ballades. While they are great, i do just find them to restrained to consider them my favourites.

Offline arensky

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #20 on: June 13, 2006, 05:04:50 AM »
Artur Rubinstein, 1959.
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Offline stevie

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #21 on: June 13, 2006, 06:32:47 AM »
Yes he is an amazing pianist. I am only talking about the ballades. While they are great, i do just find them to restrained to consider them my favourites.

agreed, much can be said for the qualities of subtlety, but his restrictions are quite painful to me.
its a shame he couldnt play with more testicular fortitude.

Offline mephisto

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #22 on: June 13, 2006, 08:15:04 AM »
but his restrictions are quite painful to me.

I know exeactly how you feel. Painfull is the right word. Seriously it hurts(no kiddin). I am waiting for him to unleash but he never unleashes. Such a let down. It is like when a soccer-player manages to dribble every single player on the field, and gets alone with the goal and everybody is waiting for him to score, but for some inzane reason he misses!

Favourites:
Complete Set:
Rubinstein

Ind:
Richter 2nd ballade
Friedman 3rd ballade(from NAXOS vol5)

Offline jre58591

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #23 on: June 13, 2006, 08:16:52 AM »
I know exeactly how you feel. Painfull is the right word. Seriously it hurts(no kiddin). I am waiting for him to unleash but he never unleashes.
he seriously unleashes in his other works though. jsut watch his chopin scherzo in b flat min vid. now THATS some furious sheet. i have to admit, his ballades arent his best performances.
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Offline mephisto

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #24 on: June 13, 2006, 08:17:57 AM »
he seriously unleashes in his other works though. jsut watch his chopin scherzo in b flat min vid. now THATS some furious sheet. i have to admit, his ballades arent his best performances.

Once again I am only talking about the ballades.

Offline stucoy

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #25 on: June 13, 2006, 05:14:32 PM »
Cortot.

Offline princessdecadence

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #26 on: June 16, 2006, 03:20:23 PM »
I won't say no to the others, I like Ashkenazy, Rubinstein, Richter etc etc but I really dislike Horowitz'
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Offline theodopolis

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #27 on: June 18, 2006, 06:23:40 AM »
Samson Francois




Does anyone else here think the opening of Liszt's 'Orage' (AdP - Suisse No.5) sounds like the Gymnopedie from Hell?

Offline steve jones

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #28 on: June 18, 2006, 04:28:08 PM »
I won't say no to the others, I like Ashkenazy, Rubinstein, Richter etc etc but I really dislike Horowitz'

Yeah, Horowitz appeared very heavy handed with these pieces to me. I didnt like his recordings at all.

SJ

Offline palika dunno

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #29 on: June 18, 2006, 05:17:12 PM »
Rubinstein + Cortot

Offline brewtality

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #30 on: June 19, 2006, 08:52:50 AM »
Many good choices here! You guys have good taste.

I was very glad to hear people mention Friedman and his great pupil Tiegerman.

Ballade 1: I like Hofmann, Cortot, Rubinstein.
Ballade 2: Not sure
Ballade 3: Cortot, Friedman, Rachmaninoff, Cherkassky. <--- these represent some of my favourite recordings ever.
Ballade 4: Hofmann, Cherkassky.

Ambivalence: Zimerman. He gets talked up quite a lot, but I just don't hear anything truly 'great' in his performances. It's all fine playing but nothing extraordinary imho.

Versions I dislike: Kissin. I can't articulate just how much I dislike his playing here. The opening of the first sounds like a joke. I think he completely missed the point in the Third. Don't get me wrong, he has made some great recordings, but these were not at all to my taste.

Offline stevie

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #31 on: June 19, 2006, 09:15:32 AM »
Yeah, Horowitz appeared very heavy handed with these pieces to me. I didnt like his recordings at all.

SJ


not heavy handed enough for me

Offline quasimodo

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #32 on: June 19, 2006, 02:57:21 PM »
Samson Francois






Samson François  8) !!!
" On ne joue pas du piano avec deux mains : on joue avec dix doigts. Chaque doigt doit être une voix qui chante"

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Offline fun king ded

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #33 on: June 19, 2006, 09:52:17 PM »
Many good choices here! You guys have good taste.

Ambivalence: Zimerman. He gets talked up quite a lot, but I just don't hear anything truly 'great' in his performances. It's all fine playing but nothing extraordinary imho.

Versions I dislike: Kissin. I can't articulate just how much I dislike his playing here. The opening of the first sounds like a joke. I think he completely missed the point in the Third. Don't get me wrong, he has made some great recordings, but these were not at all to my taste.

I agree with your thoughts on Zimerman.  Have to admit I was somewhat disappointed after listening to his recording on DG of the ballades, since I heard so many great things about it beforehand.  His choice of tempo on No. 4 is too slow for my tastes, and the coda is somewhat lacking as a result.

Despite having a monstrous technique and beautiful touch, I can't stand Kissin's recording.  Sounds like he is trying to be profound, but just ends up sounding incoherent and unfocused more than anything else.

Moravec's set is highly recommended although he sometimes takes a few too many liberties with the rhythms at times.  Nikita Magaloff's recording is very profound and also highly recommended.

For older recordings if you can get past the sound quality, I like Cortot immensely.  For more recent recordings I like Perahia ( yeah, I know he gets hammered as being bland and there are alot of edits).  Also the recordings from the Richter in Prague series are nice performances although alittle harsh at times.

Offline jam8086

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #34 on: June 20, 2006, 02:08:59 AM »
i agree wholeheartedly. i have a video of him playing all 4, and i can say its one of teh best videos i have.

where did you get this video? i've seen them on youtube, but i can't seem to find any place that sells the dvd/vhs!

Offline demented cow

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #35 on: June 21, 2006, 04:10:19 PM »
Katsaris' cd of the ballades & scherzos is unique because he finds so many beautiful inner voices in these pieces that you never hear from other players. People who came to know these pieces from the Katsaris cd will probably think other pianists are not playing all the notes.
I also find that Barere's 1 & 4 do something to me. There's a kind of malevolent energy in there that sends shivers up my spine.
Otherwise I agree with some people above: Zimmerman is wonderful (so much musical depth), Kissin is a bit flat, Horowitz is for some reason not at his best in the 4th in my view.

Offline tocca

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #36 on: June 21, 2006, 09:47:03 PM »
Rubinstein. He performed them just as i imagine Chopin envisioned them, in my opinion.
Feeling, bravura and a lovely tone.

Offline jam8086

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #37 on: June 29, 2006, 08:34:16 PM »
Anyone heard Stephen Hough's recording of the Ballades paired with the Scherzos?

WONDERFUL!

Offline lamia

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #38 on: June 30, 2006, 03:13:02 PM »
Anyone heard Stephen Hough's recording of the Ballades paired with the Scherzos?

WONDERFUL!

I heard his recording of Ballade 2. Breath-taking.

Offline crazy for ivan moravec

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #39 on: June 30, 2006, 03:52:47 PM »
ballade 1: perahia
ballade 2: ashkenazy
ballade 3: zimerman (my god!)
ballade 4: movarec (that made me CRAZY FOR IVAN MORAVEC!!!! and his barcarolle and polonaise-fantasie too!)

in moravec's recording of the 4th, there's this section towards the end in the key of Db (triplet 16ths left hand) where he just bursts in great prayer, like pleading, or something... Bb-Ab-G-Ab!!!) arghhh... i get a high listening to that part. sorry i don't have the score to point out the measure number.
and he has the fastest coda i've ever heard, and the fastest chords before the coda... without ever sounding virtuosic for its virtuosity's sake.
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Offline mozartk365

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #40 on: March 11, 2012, 02:59:19 PM »
ballade no.1: Kissin, Ashkenazy, Zimerman 1987 version
ballade no.2: Cortot, Rubinstein, or Zimerman
ballade no.3: no idea
ballade no.4: Zimerman, Rubinstein, or Cziffra

Offline jesc

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #41 on: March 11, 2012, 04:58:47 PM »
ballade 1: Hofmann and Horowitz

The rest, Zimerman. But my preference is fickle and is bound to change.

Offline teccomin

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Re: Your Favorite Chopin Ballades Rec?
«Reply #42 on: March 11, 2012, 06:54:44 PM »
Not many people will mention these 2, but I really enjoyed them, hope you enjoy them too

Askenase 3


Vasary 2