Mieczyslaw Horszowski

J.S. Bach: Partita No. 2; Mozart: Piano Sonata, K 570; Chopin: Nocturne Op. 27 No. 1; Etc.

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Artists with exceptionally long careers are frequently revered in the classical music parlance. Take the likes of Rubinstein, Stern, Milstein, Rostropovich -- all of whom had active performance careers well into old age. But there is one pianist -- Mieczyslaw Horszowski -- whose 95-year career trumps nearly anyone else, yet his name is much less widely recognized. This is regrettable because his performance skills are every bit as notable. Also very active as a teacher, Horszowski molded many students, most notably Murray Perahia and Richard Goode. In fact, the approach of these two protégés to both Bach and Mozart can be very clearly heard in their master's performance of the same. This recording, made from live recitals given at the Aldeburgh Festival in the early '80s, sadly does not do full justice to Horszowski's playing. Considering the era, the sound quality is of surprisingly low quality, even for a live performance. There is a lot of noise from the audience and the piano itself sounds very distant. Much like Rubinstein, Horszowski was by no means a flawless technician, but his performances are consistently musical and captivating. Those interested in historical recordings of artists with remarkably enduring careers will no doubt find this recording a valued addition to their collection despite issues of sound quality.

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