Eric le Sage

Schumann: Für die Jugend...

  • AllMusic Rating
    9
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Eric le Sage's superlative series of recordings of the piano music of Robert Schumann continues with this unusual but wholly organic set featuring the composer's works for children. In two well-filled discs, le Sage presents all 43 pieces from Album für die Jugend, along with the Twelve Piano Pieces for Little and Big Children, the Nine Characteristic Tone Pieces called Ball-Scenes, and the Six Easy Dance Pieces called Kinderball, the last three works for four hands. Although 60 children's pieces all together might seem like too much of a good thing, the actual performances roll by without causing the slightest dip in interest. The listener cannot expect music with the profundity of the C major Fantasia; these are truly children's pieces with charming melodies, delightful harmonies, infectious rhythms, and, above all, easy accessibility. But within the context of what they set out to do -- make music appealing for children -- these pieces are hard to beat. Le Sage's performances could hardly be bettered; the pianist turns in readings as beautifully executed as his earlier recordings of Schumann's more technically challenging masterpieces. Pairing with Denis Pascal or Frank Braley, le Sage delivers enchanting accounts of the four-hand piano pieces. Captured in Alpha Productions' standard clear, deep, and atmospheric sound, this two-disc set should be heard by anyone following this series or anyone interested in either the composer or in piano music for children.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Pieces for Children Big and Small (12), for piano, 4 hands, Op. 85
1
2:21
2
1:23
3
2:13
4
1:35
5
2:12
6
1:57
7
3:22
8
1:46
9
2:27
10
1:22
11
2:55
12
2:44
Ballszenen (9) for piano, 4 hands, Op. 109
13
1:18
14
3:11
15
1:35
16
2:15
17
1:56
18
3:52
19
2:58
20
3:24
21
4:35
Kinderball for piano, 4 hands (6 leichte Tanzstücke), Op. 130
22
3:00
23
1:21
24
2:09
25
0:58
26
1:14
27
2:37

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Album für die Jugend (Album for the Young) for piano, Op. 68
1
1:01
2
0:52
3
0:53
4
1:36
5
0:55
6
1:23
7
0:56
8
0:33
9
1:39
10
0:38
11
1:16
12
1:36
13
2:08
14
2:16
15
1:46
16
1:16
17
1:23
18
0:51
19
0:50
20
1:11
21
1:34
22
1:27
23
1:12
24
1:24
25
1:20
26
2:10
27
1:16
28
1:42
29
2:36
30
2:42
31
1:03
32
2:49
33
1:43
34
2:46
35
2:45
36
1:07
37
2:16
38
2:08
39
2:34
40
2:31
41
2:01
42
1:33
43
1:55
blue highlight denotes track pick