Disk of 2022 > [Archived] Clasic

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NDR Radio Philharmonic Orchestra in Hannover, conductor Peter Ruzicka – works by George Enescu – Music box, February 28th, 2022

Monday, 7 March 2022 , ora 14.14

An album whose appearance I joyfully greet: works by George Enescu, performed by the Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Peter Ruzicka, with German violinist CarolinWidmann and Romanian pianist Luiza Borac as soloists. This is the world premiere of the recorded works, released on January 7th, 2022 under the logo of Classic Produktion Osnabruck (CPO).

Of course, works by George Enescu recorded for the first time ever still appearing in 2022 - is an event. On this album we can find two works of his youth, composed by Enescu around the age of 16: an unfinished Concerto for Violin and Orchestra and the Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra.

A clear mark of Brahmsian heritage can be found in this Concerto for Violin and Orchestra by George Enescu, a work from which the composer left only 600 measures, completed by Cornel Țăranu and Peter Ruzicka.

Along with this concerto, on the same album, recorded for the first time too, there is another work by Enescu, dated 1898 - Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra, whose soloist is the pianist Luiza Borac.

Pianist Luiza Borac offered us more details: "The latest album is dedicated to George Enescu and contains two important works of his youth: the Concerto for Violin and Orchestra and the Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra. This project was launched by the CPO record label in collaboration with Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of conductor and composer Peter Ruzicka. We recorded the Fantasy for Piano and orchestra last year. It was a project that took place in record time, I would say. At the end of March I received from maestro Ruzickaa message, asking if I could possibly participate in this project in May, but it was only a side discussion, because the Covid restrictions were extremely severe and the orchestra did not yet have approval for this project. And I was, of course, very surprised when, just a few days later, this question materialized, and I agreed to learn and prepare this piece during a few weeks - so during April, in order to record it in May.

It is a great honour and joy that, after the world premiere recording of the Concerto for Piano and Orchestra by George Enescu, now, a year later, follows this recording of the Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra, which is also a world premiere. It is a work that also comes from the creative period of young George Enescu, being in Vienna. During his studies in Vienna, he composed the unfinished Concerto. And one year after continuing his studies in Paris, this wonderful Fantasy appeared. It is a complete work. It is characterized both by an intense polyphonic and contrapuntal structure, and by a particularLisztian virtuosity. It is a work that combines Brahmsian expressiveness with this overflowing virtuosity, especially in the octave passages - passages of utmost difficulty, which again amazes us in front of this great talent who, at the age of 16, composed so beautifully and, what is more, was able to interpret these works, which are not easy at all.

The Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra appeared in 1898. As I said, he was already in Paris. So it can possibly be understood as a liberation from the severe standards of Vienna school. It culminates with such a majestic end, an end in which the presence of a later Enescu, in its full force, can be felt."

An album that is an event for the Romanian culture - unique works by George Enescu, recorded for the first time ever, that are yet another proof of young Enescu's genius, and an expressive and nuanced performance proposed by the soloists and the Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, along with one of the most important promoters of Enescu's music at the international level, conductor Peter Ruzicka.

Cristina Comandașu
Translated by Ecaterina Bucovanu,
University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I
Corrected by Silvia Petrescu