ERNST KRENEK (1900-1991): Complete Piano Concertos, Vol. 1 - No. 1 in F Sharp, Op. 18, No. 2, Op. 81 and No. 3, Op. 107.
Catalogue Number: 03R053
Label: Toccata Classics
Reference: TOCC 0323
Description: This is hard one to characterize since none of these concertos sounds like any of the others and people who might want one or two won’t like the other(s). Anyway, No. 1 of 1923 (premiered by Eduard Erdmann and Scherchen) is tonal but pushing tonal boundaries in creating a richly varied soundscape which should appeal to those interested in the Berlin avant-garde of the Weimar period; No. 2 (1937 with Krenek at the piano and Bruno Walter on the podium) is twelve-tone, but Krenek created his series from a tonal theme which he had started with before deciding to go dodecaphonic; its general character is nocturnal and decadent. No. 3 is back to tonality (1946 with Krenek again and the Minneapolis Symphony under Mitropoulos) is a kind of blend with the “Concerto for Orchestra” genre as the pianist partners with single sections of the orchestra in its five attacca sections, brash, spiky and brimming with color and wit. Mikhail Korzhev (piano), English Symphony Orchestra; Kenneth Woods.