SERGEI RACHMANINOFF (1873-1943) Symphony No.2 in E minor, op. 27 – arrangement for Two Pianos. Simon Callahan, Hiroaki Takenouchi

Catalogue Number: 11Y022

Label: Nimbus

Reference: NI8110

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Simon Callaghan & Hiroaki Takenouchi write: “As long ago as the eighteenth century, composers were arranging orchestral works for two pianos or for piano duet, making them more domestically accessible and exposing their compositions to a wider audience. Four-hand piano versions abound of symphonies by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Schumann, Haydn and more. Since Rachmaninoff focused mainly on the piano, we were surprised to be unable to find a two-piano arrangement by the composer himself of his Symphony No. 2, particularly since he arranged his own first and third symphonies for four hands. Such was the popularity of the Second Symphony that Vladimir Wilschau (1868-1957) created a four hands arrangement in 1910, just two years after the premiere in St Petersburg under the composer’s baton. Our objective in creating this new arrangement was to remain as faithful to the original as practically possible. We set out to embrace not only the capabilities of the two pianos but also their limitations – we wanted to create a true piano work, rather than a less-than-satisfactory imitation of the orchestral version. Of course, our motivation was also to be able to enjoy playing this magnificent masterpiece which we had cherished for as long as we could remember!”

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