Maurizio Pollini

Steinway Legends: Maurizio Pollini

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AllMusic Review by James Leonard

If the intention of this two-disc set is to show off the quality of Steinway pianos, it wholly succeeds. Anyone hearing the clarity, warmth, and depth of the pianos here would have to agree that Steinways are surely among the greatest pianos ever made. If the intention of this set is to show off the quality of Maurizio Pollini as a pianist, it completely succeeds. Although he has been accused of emotional objectivity and intellectual severity, anyone hearing his performances here would have to agree that Pollini has perhaps the finest technique of any pianist in the second half of the twentieth century. In performance after performance, from his astounding Three Movements from Petrouchka by Stravinsky to his astonishing "Winter Wind" Etude by Chopin, Pollini's playing is truly breathtaking. And if as a bonus the intention of this set is to show off the quality of Deutsche Grammophon's piano recordings, it entirely succeeds. The absolute lucidity and the undeniable reality of their sound puts Pollini and his Steinway right in the room with the listener. While fans of Pollini will no doubt already have all of these previously issued recordings, anyone who doesn't already know his playing should check out this set. Just put on the last track of the second disc -- Debussy's Pour les accords from his 12 Etudes -- it's guaranteed to blow your mind.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Piano Sonata No. 21 in C major ("Waldstein"), Op. 53
1 Maurizio Pollini 10:00 Amazon
2 Maurizio Pollini 03:54 Amazon
3 Maurizio Pollini 09:28 Amazon
Symphonic Etudes ("Etudes in the form of variations") for piano (2 versions), Op. 13
4 Maurizio Pollini 01:21
5 Maurizio Pollini 01:15
6 Maurizio Pollini 02:53
7 Maurizio Pollini 01:11
8 Maurizio Pollini 00:53
9 Maurizio Pollini 01:13
10 Maurizio Pollini 01:33
11 Maurizio Pollini 01:44
12 Maurizio Pollini 01:03
13 Maurizio Pollini 02:16
14 Maurizio Pollini 02:24
15 Maurizio Pollini 00:53
16 Maurizio Pollini 01:10
17 Maurizio Pollini 01:49
18 Maurizio Pollini 00:39
19 Maurizio Pollini 01:16
20 Maurizio Pollini 01:33
21 Maurizio Pollini 06:59
Petrushka, movements (3) for piano
22 Maurizio Pollini 02:31 Amazon
23 Maurizio Pollini 04:17
24 Maurizio Pollini 08:31 Amazon
Variations for piano, Op. 27
25 Maurizio Pollini 01:52 Amazon
26 Maurizio Pollini 00:40 Amazon
27 Maurizio Pollini 03:27 Amazon

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Maurizio Pollini 06:31
2 Maurizio Pollini 04:28
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 25, CT. 26-37
3 Maurizio Pollini 02:15
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 10, CT. 14-25
4 Maurizio Pollini 04:52
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 25, CT. 26-37
5 Maurizio Pollini 00:58
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 10, CT. 14-25
6 Maurizio Pollini 03:57
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 25, CT. 26-37
7 Maurizio Pollini 03:32
Etudes (12) for piano, Op. 10, CT. 14-25
8 Maurizio Pollini 02:37
Piano Sonata in B minor, S. 178 (LW A179)
9 Maurizio Pollini 00:38 Amazon
10 Maurizio Pollini 02:39 Amazon
11 Maurizio Pollini 06:22 Amazon
12 Maurizio Pollini 01:51 Amazon
13 Maurizio Pollini 01:02 Amazon
14 Maurizio Pollini 06:22 Amazon
15 Maurizio Pollini 02:22 Amazon
16 Maurizio Pollini 03:09 Amazon
17 Maurizio Pollini 00:29 Amazon
18 Maurizio Pollini 00:52 Amazon
19 Maurizio Pollini 01:03 Amazon
20 Maurizio Pollini 01:00 Amazon
21 Maurizio Pollini 01:18 Amazon
22 Maurizio Pollini 03:12
23 Maurizio Pollini 04:21
24 Maurizio Pollini 03:35
25 Maurizio Pollini 05:03
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