Magazine article Gramophone

Beethoven: Piano Concertos-No 1

Magazine article Gramophone

Beethoven: Piano Concertos-No 1

Article excerpt

Beethoven

Piano Concertos--No 1, Op 15; No 2, Op 19

Louis Schwizgebel pf London Philharmonic Orchestra / Thierry Fischer

Aparte (F) AP098 (65' * DDD)

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

The Swiss-Chinese pianist Louis Schwizgebel (he has dropped the 'Wang' portion of his name under which he recorded for Pan and Aparte - 11/13) has been attracting sustained attention and acclaim since coming second in the Leeds Piano Competition in 2012 and being appointed a BBC New Generation Artist the following year. For his debut concerto recording, he has bravely chosen the first two Beethoven concertos - presumably the rest will follow in due course - entering a very crowded field.

Schwizgebel is a fine pianist technically, with a keenly attuned sense of poetry. His shaping of the melodies in these two concertos is beautifully done and I liked his approach to No 2, the Cinderella of the Beethoven cycle, throughout. This is young man's music played that way and Schwizgebel's account fares well by comparison with those, say, of Aimard, Goode and Vogt. I will think more kindly of the work hereafter.

The First, commenced and completed between the two versions of No 2, requires a more mature expressivity and a performer of a little more experience to project its full array of drama as well as poetry. …

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