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Discussion: Chopin: Piano Works Vol. 1 - Jean-Marc Luisada

Posts: 9

Post by ramesh September 15, 2008 (1 of 9)
Ah, another SACD from BMG.
Does anyone have any opinions about this pianist?

Post by Arthur September 15, 2008 (2 of 9)
ramesh said:

Ah, another SACD from BMG.
Does anyone have any opinions about this pianist?

Luisada recorded for DG early in his career, but never seemed to catch on, so he ended up with BMG who have rarely released anything outside of France.

To my ears (and I'm NOT a fan of Alicia DeLarrocha) his Goyescas was one of the most incredible piano recordings I've ever heard! Of course, it's very slow with a very old-fashioned, mannered rubato, but for me it works.

His Chopin has been good without making me forget any of the greats of the past and his Grieg/Schumann Concertos disc was rather ordinary, but his Faure/Bizet disc was very nice.

He is NOT a flamboyant modern virtuoso who plays all the notes with machine-like precision, but without feeling. Instead he strikes me as being out of the Arrau mold (not to say that he has reached quite that level). But for me, as a piano lover, this disc, like others by Vladimir Tropp, Nelson Freire and Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, is a "must hear"!

Post by akiralx September 16, 2008 (3 of 9)
ramesh said:

Ah, another SACD from BMG.
Does anyone have any opinions about this pianist?

His DG set of the Chopin Waltzes is superb, I've never heard his set of the Mazurkas.

He's since made a few recital CDs for RCA, one of which got very bad reviews, implying that he had become too wayward, even eccentric. I'll be tempted by this SACD though.

As far as I can tell by looking at the BMG Japan website, this SACD includes the nocturnes opp. 9/1 and 55/2, études opp. 10/5 and 10/10, the barcarolle op.60, scherzo no. 4 op.54, the polonaise-fantasie op.61, and the waltz op. 34/2.

Post by Arthur October 15, 2008 (4 of 9)
I'm not going to write a full review, since I don't really have the inclination any longer to do reviews, but I found this disc EXTREMELY rewarding! He truly makes these works miniature tone poems! And from me, that's a complement!

Post by current93 April 6, 2010 (5 of 9)
I strongly disagree with the high estimate of this release. Luisada uses one selected slow pace for all the works, no matter waltz or etude. Luisada's playing is detached, comatose and old-fashioned. By the way, he plays the Yamaha piano, not a Steinway Grand D - that also does not make him a favor.
Sometimes you simply have to wait for the next phrase. For me it is the most boring Chopin release since Ashkenazy on Decca SACD.
To determine the true 21 century Chopin playing, I recommend auditioning the release on Telos - Chopin: Recital - Oliver Schnyder TLS 070. Schnyder's interpretations have vision, impeccable technique and a differentiated approach to each masterpiece. It's rare SACD but it's worth all the efforts spent on its search.

Post by terence April 7, 2010 (6 of 9)
What is "21st century Chopin playing"? I don't understand this concept.

Post by current93 April 7, 2010 (7 of 9)
terence said:

What is "21st century Chopin playing"? I don't understand this concept.

From the standpoint of contemporary music and performing arts, its aesthetics and artistic practice of advanced technique of playing, modern artists, performing a musical work, are determined by an objective style, character and image-poetic systems . Ignoring this fundamentally important factor in performance leads to a blurring of stylistic differences between works of different authors and periods and, thus devaluing the results of musical and performing activities. Luisada's interpretations are flat, unemotional and dull on the background of e.g. Hough and Hamelin.

Post by terence April 7, 2010 (8 of 9)
this seems to imply that "21st century chopin playing" must be better than "20th century chopin playing" (whatever that was)?

Post by Daland April 7, 2010 (9 of 9)
rusal said:

Ignoring this fundamentally important factor in performance leads to a blurring of stylistic differences between works of different authors and periods and, thus devaluing the results of musical and performing activities. Luisada's interpretations are flat, unemotional and dull on the background of e.g. Hough and Hamelin.

We are talking about an all-Chopin programme, not different authors and periods. I have listened to Luisada's recording and found it anything but unemotional and dull.
There have always been different ways of playing Chopin, even in the composer's own day. What's more, we now live in a postmodern world where "anything goes".

Incidentally, a Steinway grand is not necessarily the best instrument when subtlety and intimacy are called for.

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