MILY BALAKIREV (1837-1910): Sonata in B Flat Minor, Op. 3 "Grande Sonate" (World Premiere Recording), Sonata in B Flat Minor, Op. 5, Sonata in B Flat Minor (1905).
Catalogue Number: 06O038
Label: Grand Piano
Description: Balakirev spent almost his entire life trying to capture the sweep and history of Russia in a work which he originally envisioned as a symphony. This came to naught but, in 1855, he wrote the big, four-movement Grande Sonate which receives its World Premiere Recording here. Leaving what might have been a fugal epilogue of Busonian proportions unfinished (only 35 seconds of music remain here), he rewrote the sonata the following year, retaining only the revised Mazurka second movement but left it without a final movement. At the end of his career (1905), he wrote the four-movement sonata which has been recorded several times recently, again with a revised version of the mazurka. So what we have here are three different visions of a youthful wish, all conceived on a large scale, full of rich melody and technical challenges and a must for any Romantic piano collector. Nicholas Walker (piano).