Mark Hambourg (1879-1960) plays Mendelssohn's "Auf Flügeln des Gesanges" (On Wings of Song), transcribed for piano by Franz Liszt. Recorded in 1927.
'Hambourg's earliest discs display a huge tone, brilliant fingerwork and fiery temperament; the 1909 Moszkowski etude is a splendid example. Ignaz Friedman once confessed to a cousin his jealousy over Hambourg: "Er macht besser!" [He does it better!] There is a resemblance between Friedman and Hambourg beyond the round dark-framed spectacles they wore as both caressed the piano and approached it in a sensual manner, singing out the themes against a tonally luxuriant background, a practice encouraged by Leschetizky.' (Allan Evans)
A link to the excellent website of The Hambourg Conservatory in Toronto, Canada:
Isaac Albéniz, Béla Bartók, Benjamin Britten, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Abram Chasins, Aaron Copland, Claude Debussy, Ernö Dohnányi, George Enescu, Manuel de Falla, Samuel Feinberg, Jean Françaix, George Gershwin, Enrique Granados, Vincent d'Indy, John Ireland, Charles Ives, Aram Khachaturian, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Dinu Lipatti, Frank Martin, Nicolai Medtner, Olivier Messiaen, Darius Milhaud, Federico Mompou, Francis Poulenc, Sergei Prokofiev, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Maurice Ravel, Camille Saint-Saëns, Erwin Schulhoff, Rodion Shchedrin, Dimitri Shostakovich, Igor Stravinsky, Karol Szymanowski, Alexander Tcherepnin, Heitor Villa-Lobos play their own works on piano (no piano-rolls included!)
Teodor Leszetycki (mostly referred to by the germanised name used by himself Theodor Leschetizky, June 22, 1830 -- November 14, 1915) was a Polish pianist, teacher and composer. He was born in Łańcut, Poland (at the time part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire).
From an early age he was recognized as a prodigy, and after studying in Vienna with Karl CZERNY and Simon Sechter he became a teacher at fourteen; by the age of eighteen he was a well-known virtuoso in Viennese music circles. Besides performing, he became a very influential piano teacher, first at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, which he co-founded with Anton Rubinstein, and subsequently in Vienna. His students included many of the most renowned pianists of their time, including Ignaz FRIEDMAN, Benno MOISEIWITSCH, Elly NEY, Ignacy PADEREWSKI, Artur SCHNABEL, Mark HAMBOURG, Mieczysław HORSZOWSKI and many others.
In this playlist you can hear the acoustic recordings made in 1922 by Ferruccio Dante Michelangiolo Benvenuto Busoni (1866-1924), as well as a selection of the recorded legacy of nine of his pupils: Guido Agosti (1901-1989) Etelka Freund (1879-1977) Rudolf Ganz (1877-1972) Frida Kwast - Hodapp (1880-1949) Egon Petri (1881-1962) Mieczayslaw Munz (1900-1976, a rare clip without sound) Leo Sirota (1885-1965) Michael Zadora (1882-1946) Carlo Zecchi (1903-1984)
Busoni on the importance of details in piano playing:
"If a truly great work of art in the form of a stained glass window should be accidentally shattered to little bits, one should be able to estimate the greatness of the whole window by examining one of the fragments even though all the other pieces were missing. In fine piano playing all of the details are important. I do not mean to say that if one were in another room that one could invariably tell the ability of an artist by hearing him strike one note, but if the note is heard in relation to other notes in a composition, its proportionate value should be so delicately and artistically estimated by the highly trained performer, that it forms part of the artistic whole."
CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896) - The widow of Robert, friend and spiritual mentor to Johannes Brahms, expert and often eloquent minor composer and, by all accounts, a great pianist and teacher - was one of the most remarkable women of the 19th century. For this playlist I selected some recordings made by four of her pupils: - Fanny Davies (1861-1934) - Ilona Eibenschütz (1872-1967) - Adelina de Lara (1872-1961) - Carl Friedberg (1872-1955)
Josef (Józef Kazimierz) Hofmann, 1876-1957. One of the greatest pianists of all time, startling audiences when he was six years old. Apart from having taken lessons with Eugen d'Albert, he is the best disciple of Anton Rubinstein, and although he is considered one of the first "modernists" in piano playing, his style must have been influenced by that Master. Some of his studio recordings can sound a little remote; there is much more spontaneity in his amazing live-recordings, e.g. Chopin's Ballades or the First Piano Concerto. "His style combined an aristocratical musical line, a perpetually singing tone, and a range of dynamics from the most etheral pianissimo to tigerish surges in which the piano erupted." (Harold Schonberg) Audio and video.