Garrick Ohlsson

Rachmaninov: Corelli Variations; Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition; Prokofiev: Sonata No. 2

  • AllMusic Rating
    7
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

Rachmaninov: Corelli Variations; Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition; Prokofiev: Sonata No. 2 Review

by James Leonard

Listeners who already know Garrick Ohlsson's recordings of Chopin and Beethoven will not need to be persuaded to try this 2010 disc of the Bronxville-born pianist's recordings of works by Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, and Mussorgsky. They will already know exactly what to expect: eye-popping virtuosity, jaw-dropping velocity, and an approach to interpretation that might be fairly characterized as mind-blowing. Rachmaninov's edgy and angular Variations on a Theme of Corelli is sharp-cornered and hard-driven, Prokofiev's brutal and boisterous Second Sonata is extremely vigorous and exceedingly muscular, and Mussorgsky's moody and magnificent Pictures at an Exhibition is given the wide-screen, full-color treatment in a performance that seems somehow to get bigger as it proceeds. For some, Ohlsson's bone-crushing account of Prokofiev's opening Allegro and piano-busting reading of Mussorgsky's closing "Great Gates of Kiev" may seem too little about the music and too much about the pianist's physical strength. For others, Ohlsson's performances will either seduce or bludgeon them into submission.

The Rachmaninov and Prokofiev recordings were made under studio conditions in Purchase, NY, in 2008, and the Mussorgsky was recorded live at the 1974 Prague Spring Festival. The former have clear, crisp sound, with no extraneous noise, while the latter has close, tight sound, with the occasional audience noise, including rapturous applause at the end.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Variations on a Theme of Corelli, Op. 42
1 Garrick Ohlsson 01:11 Amazon
2 Garrick Ohlsson 00:51 Amazon
3 Garrick Ohlsson 00:42 Amazon
4 Garrick Ohlsson 00:42 Amazon
5 Garrick Ohlsson 01:05 Amazon
6 Garrick Ohlsson 00:24 Amazon
7 Garrick Ohlsson 00:23 Amazon
8 Garrick Ohlsson 00:26 Amazon
9 Garrick Ohlsson 01:11 Amazon
10 Garrick Ohlsson 01:16 Amazon
11 Garrick Ohlsson 00:36 Amazon
12 Garrick Ohlsson 00:23 Amazon
13 Garrick Ohlsson 00:42 Amazon
14 Garrick Ohlsson 00:32 Amazon
15 Garrick Ohlsson 01:10 Amazon
16 Garrick Ohlsson 01:09 Amazon
17 Garrick Ohlsson 01:50 Amazon
18 Garrick Ohlsson 00:32 Amazon
19 Garrick Ohlsson 01:06 Amazon
20 Garrick Ohlsson 00:35 Amazon
21 Garrick Ohlsson 00:28 Amazon
22 Garrick Ohlsson 02:31 Amazon
Piano Sonata No. 2 in D minor, Op. 14
23 Garrick Ohlsson 06:39 Amazon
24 Garrick Ohlsson 02:18 Amazon
25 Garrick Ohlsson 05:53 Amazon
26 Garrick Ohlsson 05:25 Amazon
Pictures at an Exhibition
27 Garrick Ohlsson 01:15 Amazon
28 Garrick Ohlsson 02:25 Amazon
29 Garrick Ohlsson 00:41 Amazon
30 Garrick Ohlsson 03:50 Amazon
31 Garrick Ohlsson 00:26 Amazon
32 Garrick Ohlsson 00:56 Amazon
33 Garrick Ohlsson 02:25 Amazon
34 Garrick Ohlsson 00:38 Amazon
35 Garrick Ohlsson 01:00 Amazon
36 Garrick Ohlsson 02:14 Amazon
37 Garrick Ohlsson 01:15 Amazon
38 Garrick Ohlsson 01:21 Amazon
39 Garrick Ohlsson 01:28 Amazon
40 Garrick Ohlsson 01:35 Amazon
41 Garrick Ohlsson 02:56 Amazon
42 Garrick Ohlsson 04:36 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick