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Harmonies Poetiques et Religieuses by Franz Liszt- on the Album of the Pianist Roberto Plano, Transmitted in Premiere at CD Review from 7th to 9th of November

Monday, 7 November 2016 , ora 14.17

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Roberto Plano was distinguished in 2001 after he won the First Prize of the Cleveland International Piano Competition. In 2005 he was the Finalist of The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Also, in 2001, he was the Founder and Director of the Music Association “Alfred Cortot” in Italy at the Varesina Music Academy with the purpose of spreading as he says the joy of classical music under all of its aspects giving the priority of musical education for the young ones.

He is known to the Romanian public for the concert he performed at the Athenaeum with Royal Camerata on the 29th of May this year where he performed Concerto No.2 for Piano and Orchestra by Rachmaninoff. New York Times wrote about this pianist: This Italian pianist has proved artistic maturity despite his age of 38. There is a clarity and a control of performance which contributes to its wonderful interpretation.

The artistic performance of the pianist was mainly focused in the USA because starting from this year in September he was hired as a piano professor at the University of Boston. His repertoire is variable from discoveries like the Sonatas of the Italian composer, Andrea Luchesi, to the romantic music and 20th century music. Roberto Plano was described by the press as a Pavarotti of the piano because of its lyrism and declared by some the heir of Arthur Rubenstein and Vladimir Horowitz.

Poetic and religious consonances

The piano songs signed by Franz Liszt is an Opus that spreads the spiritual search of the composer in the shade of the poet Alphonse de Lamartine. Harmonies Poetiques et Religieuses has ten songs: Invocation; Ave Maria; Benediction de Dieu dans la Solitude; Pensee des Morts; Pater Noster; Hymne de l'Enfant a son Reve; Funerailles; Miserere d'apres Palestrina; Andante Lagrimoso; Cantique d'Amour (Consolation No. 3 in D flat major).

It is a score that in the last fifty years was not mentioned in the universal recordings catalogue. This album is the first recording of the piano songs entitled Poetic religious consonances by Liszt after the achievement from the 1960`s of the French pianist France Clidat.

I could say that beyond this premiere the album represents for the artistic biography of Roberto Plano the beginning of its collaboration with the famous editorial emblem Decca. The disc was launched on the 29th of July 2016 and gained five stars by the Amadeus Music Magazine and is part of Radio Romania Music`s campaign Vote for the classical album of 2016.

The programme of this album was presented to the public in a recital in September 2015. An interpretation which was appreciated for the warmth of the tone that reminds about the pianist Aldo Ciccolini.

When we see Roberto Plano performing Liszt we realise it`s a true discovery. He has the quality of performing everything in an easy way with a great clarity of every sound sometimes articulating them in a rapid manner or with an incredible tenderness. He has a wonderful rubato and a dynamic palette full of subtlety. He fully understands Liszt`s piano technique and its deep contemplation state. On this album Roberto Plano has the performance of a great pianist. It makes you think about Horowitz, Rubinstein, Cziffra or Casadesus. If we listen this album multiple times and carefully, Roberto Plano`s performance fits perfectly with the legendary Jorge Bolet.

These are only a few of the arguments that can convince you to listen this Liszt album in premiere at CD review at 12.15 from 7th to 9th of  November.

Gabriel Marica
Translated by Dinulescu Ilinca
MTTLC, the University of Bucharest