Loading...

RACHMANINOFF: Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini, Op. 43

194,942 views

Loading...

Loading...

Rating is available when the video has been rented.
This feature is not available right now. Please try again later.
Published on Jun 16, 2011

When my paternal Grandfather died some years ago, I was amazed to discover a collection of Rachmaninoff 78rpm albums among his possessions. What an unexpected delight to find that recordings existed of Rachmaninoff playing his own pieces.

This recording was made in the Camden Church Studio number 2 with 70 musicians of the Philadelphia Orchestra and released on Victor Records.

Purists may object to what I've done to this recording (pseudo-stereo, EQ adjusted) but I wanted to bring this fantastic work to a wide audience. There is nothing better than hearing a composer play his own music; especially music as grand and romantic as this.

The piece is a set of 24 variations on the twenty-fourth and last of Niccolò Paganini's Caprices for solo violin, which has inspired works by several composers.

After a brief introduction, the first variation is played before the theme. Paganini's theme is stated on strings with the piano picking out salient notes, after the first variation. Rachmaninoff likely got the idea of having a variation before the theme from the finale of Beethoven's Eroica symphony. Variations 2 to 6 recombine elements of the theme. The pauses and rhetorical flourishes for the piano in variation 7 herald a change of tempo and tone. The piano next gravely intones the Dies Irae, the "day of wrath" plainchant from the medieval Mass of the Dead, while the orchestra accompanies with a slower version of the opening motif of the Paganini theme. The piece is one of several by Rachmaninoff to quote the Dies Irae plainchant melody.

The 18th variation (which I came to know through the TV movie 'Somewhere in Time') is justifiably famous but the whole work is one of my favourites: a great composer showing off his talent whilst also producing great music.

Sergei Rachmaninoff: Piano. Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski: Conductor. Recorded December 24, 1934.

  • Category

  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation VI: L'istesso tempo
  • Artist

    • Sergei Rachmaninov
  • Album

    • RACHMANINOV: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 4 (Rachmaninov) (1939-1941)
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • AdShare MG for a Third Party, SME (on behalf of Naxos)
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation VII: Meno mosso, a tampo moderato
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME (on behalf of Saar srl)
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation X: Poco marcato
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME (on behalf of Saar srl)
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XI: Moderato
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME, NaxosofAmerica (on behalf of Saar srl); Concord Music Publishing
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XII: Tempo di minuetto
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME, NaxosofAmerica (on behalf of Saar srl); Public Domain Compositions
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XIV: L'istesso tempo
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME (on behalf of Saar srl); Public Domain Compositions, UMPI, and 2 Music Rights Societies
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XV: Piu' vivo scherzando
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME, NaxosofAmerica (on behalf of Saar srl)
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XVI: Allegretto
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME (on behalf of Saar srl); UMPI, Public Domain Compositions, and 1 Music Rights Societies
  • Song

    • Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini op.43 Variation XVII: (Allegretto)
  • Artist

    • Sergej Rachmaninoff, piano with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski
  • Album

    • SERGEI RACHMANINOFF & Leopold Stokowski
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME, NaxosofAmerica (on behalf of Saar srl)
  • Song

    • Andante Cantabile (Rachmaninoff)
  • Artist

    • Rachmaninoff
  • Album

    • Dark Night Classics
  • Licensed to YouTube by

    • SME (on behalf of SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT); UMPI, Public Domain Compositions, and 6 Music Rights Societies

Loading...

Advertisement
When autoplay is enabled, a suggested video will automatically play next.

Up next


to add this to Watch Later

Add to

Loading playlists...