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Boris Giltburg has swept up numerous awards for his Liszt recordings, but one of his first releases for Naxos was of piano sonatas by Beethoven. It certainly made an impact on the critics: ‘ ... a powerful mix of astounding technique, gripping drama, and interpretive insight. … This is great pianism and great Beethoven playing at its very best.’ (Fanfare)

That's a perfect introduction to his next foray into Beethoven via the composer's first two piano concertos, with their abundance of lyric and virtuosic qualities. Add to this the names of conductor Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, who astounded everyone with their world-beating Naxos edition of Shostakovich's symphonies, and we really do have a treat of the month.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770–1827)
Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2
Rondo, WoO 6

Boris Giltburg, Piano • Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Vasily Petrenko

Beethoven’s first two piano concertos share an abundance of lyric and virtuosic qualities. Concerto No. 1 in C major is expansive and richly orchestrated with a sublime slow movement that is tender and ardent, and a finale full of inventive humour. Concerto No. 2 in B flat major marries energy with elegance, reserving poetic breadth for its slow movement and quirky wit for the finale. Also included is the jovial Rondo, WoO 6, which Beethoven originally intended to be the finale of Concerto No. 2.

Listen to an extract from Piano Concerto No. 1:
I. Allegro con brio
Listen to an extract from Piano Concerto No. 2:
II. Adagio
About the Artists
Boris Giltburg is the winner of numerous awards, most notably the First (and audience) Prize at the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, 2013. His recordings for Naxos have been consistently well received. In 2018, for example, he won Best Soloist Recording (20th/21st century) at the inaugural Opus Klassik Awards for his recording of Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Carlos Miguel Prieto, coupled with the Études-tableaux, winning many plaudits also for his follow-up recording of the Third Piano Concerto and Corelli Variations with the same forces.
Vasily Petrenko was appointed principal conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra in 2006, and in 2009 became chief conductor. He is also chief conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic, chief conductor of the European Union Youth Orchestra and principal guest conductor of the State Academic Symphony Orchestra ‘Evgeny Svetlanov’ in Moscow; in 2021 he will become music director of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He was the Classic FM/Gramophone Young Artist of the Year 2007 and the Classical BRIT Awards Male Artist of the Year 2010 and 2012.
The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic is the UK’s oldest continuing professional symphony orchestra and one of the world’s oldest concert societies. It performs over 70 concerts each season at its home, Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, and performs widely throughout the UK and internationally. The orchestra has given world premiere performances of major works by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Sir John Tavener, Karl Jenkins, Stewart Copeland, Michael Nyman, James Horner and Sir James MacMillan, in addition to works by Liverpool-born and North West England-based composers.
Other recordings by Boris Giltburg
8.573629
RACHMANINOV, S.:
Piano Concerto No. 2
Études-tableaux, Op. 33

Giltburg • Prieto
Royal Scottish National Orchestra
★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
★★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
8.573630
RACHMANINOV, S.:
Piano Concerto No. 3
Variations on a Theme of Corelli

Giltburg • Prieto
Royal Scottish National Orchestra
★★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
8.573666
SHOSTAKOVICH, D.:
Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2
String Quartet No. 8
(arranged for piano
by Boris Giltburg)

Giltburg • Owens • Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra • Petrenko
★★★★
★★★★
★★★★★
★★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
★★★★
‘Giltburg’s highly articulated fingerwork … gives appropriate variety and character to the gnarly writing … Naxos provides superb, full-bodied and detailed sound.’
Gramophone
★★★★★
★★★★
★★★★★
★★★★
‘It would be hard to imagine a more complete translation of virtuosity
into poetry.’
The Sunday Times, London
★★★★★
★★★★
‘For brilliance and the requisite Schumann poetry Giltburg lacks nothing.’
Audiophile Audition ★★★★
Other recordings by Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic
TCHAIKOVSKY, P.I.: Manfred Symphony • The Voyevoda
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra • Petrenko
★★★★

‘This performance doesn’t just speak Tchaikovsky; it speaks Russian, with all its visceral earthiness and thick consonants. The soul of Tchaikovsky is laid totally bare.’
Fanfare

SHOSTAKOVICH, D.: Symphonies (Complete) (11-DISC Boxed Set)
8.501111 [11 DISCS]
SHOSTAKOVICH, D.: The Complete Symphonies
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra • Petrenko
★★★★

‘Magnificent, thrilling performances given expressive, idiomatic readings by a formidable young conductor.’
Audiophile Audition ★★★★★

‘This is a model of clarity … yet another Petrenko performance to join the greats.’
BBC Music Magazine on Symphony No. 8

‘Petrenko and the RLPO have achieved a triumph. The orchestral playing is ripe, detailed, lithe, concentrated and intense.’
The Telegraph on Symphony No. 10

‘The final instalment of Petrenko’s remarkable Liverpool Shostakovich cycle is a world-class achievement.’
The Sunday Times on Symphony No. 13


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