Vladimir Ashkenazy

A Personal Collection

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Released in time for his 70th birthday, Vladimir Ashkenazy: A Personal Collection spans more than 40 years of the pianist-conductor's career. It opens chronologically with his 1963 Rachmaninov Third Concerto made the same year he left the Soviet Union for the West, and moves through some of his classic recordings as well as some of his less-known recordings. Among the classics, there's his thunderous 1970 Appassionata Sonata, his epic 1981 Brahms D minor Concerto, his heroic 1987 Shostakovich Fifth Symphony, his dramatic Sibelius Second Symphony, and his probing 2005 Bach Prelude and Fugue in B minor from Book I of the Well-Tempered Clavier. Among the less well-known, there's his demonic 1965 Bach D minor Concerto, his mammoth 1974 Prokofiev Second Concerto, his blustery 1984 Beethoven Bagatelle, his evocative live 1998 Tchaikovsky Méditation, and his evanescent 1999 Chopin Barcarolle. Throughout, whether as pianist or conductor, Ashkenazy's unique blend of lyric poetry and epic virtuosity, of intellectual clarity and emotional acuity, of rapt intimacy and charismatic ecstasy is always apparent. Although the 1963 Rachmaninov and the 1965 Bach sound their age, the vast majority of the recordings, whether stereo or digital, sound clean, lush, and deep. It should be noted that the recording of Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit included here is the 1982 digital remake and not the 1965 stereo original. Both are excellent -- the 1965 because it is more exciting, the 1982 because it is more evocative -- and both are currently available.

Track Listing - Disc 8

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Vladimir Ashkenazy talking about his career and music with Christopher Nupen
1
1:07
2
2:22
3
1:30
4
0:59
5
1:25
6
2:34
7
1:50
8
2:56
9
6:59
10
2:19
11
0:58
12
0:52
13
1:18
14
5:07
15
1:14
16
2:35
17
2:45
18
4:27
19
2:26
20
2:08
21
2:01
22
0:47
23
1:56
24
1:52
25
2:06
26
1:45
27
2:10
28
3:58
29
1:42
30
1:44
31
1:02
32
1:05
33
0:56
34
0:36
35
1:28
36
2:00
37
1:16
38
1:01
39
1:03
40
0:07
blue highlight denotes track pick