RODION SHCHEDRIN (b.1932): Piano Concerto No. 5, DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975): Piano Concertos No. 1 & No. 2.
Catalogue Number: 02N072
Description: The first movement of Shchedrin's fifth (of six) piano concerto sounds like a more acerbic, darker companion to the Shostakovich concertos; rather than the brash, devil-may-care cleverness of the first or the laconic, insouciant humor of the second, this is an older composer's slightly world-weary examination of the same ideas, expressed in much the same vocabulary - the concerto that the Shostakovich of the last three symphonies didn't write. The second movement continues this theme of melancholy reflection, lyrical, but hesitant and uncertain. The agitated toccata of the finale finally provides opportunity for solo virtuosity in increasingly vehement and declamatory terms, leading to a cadenza that sounds like an extended improvisation on the 'circus music' passage in the Shostakovich First, before strident fanfares bring the work to a decisive close. Denis Matsuev (piano), Mariinsky Orchestra; Valery Gergiev. Mariinsky SACD hybrid