Inon Barnatan and Academy of St Martin in the Fields Release Beethoven Piano Concertos (Part 2)
After an acclaimed first installment, Inon Barnatan, Alan Gilbert and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields complete their Beethoven piano concertos diptych. This recording project bears the fruit of longstanding and profound musical friendships. While the 2nd Piano Concerto is fairly Mozartian in spirit, the famous 5th “Emperor” Concerto reveals Beethoven’s full maturation and is one of the most popular piano concertos to this very day. These pieces are complemented by two rarities: Beethoven’s arrangement for piano and orchestra of his Violin Concerto, as well as his Choral Fantasy, a small-scale forerunner of his epic “Choral” Ninth Symphony.
Inon Barnatan is one of the most admired pianists of his generation (New York Times). The Academy of St Martin in the Fields has built a consistent repertoire with the label throughout the years. Alan Gilbert made his PENTATONE debut with Beethoven Piano Concertos Part 1 in 2019.
“The journey of recording the complete cycle of concertos is one of immersion, struggle, and rediscovery. In some ways, recording a piece of music is the most intense relationship one can have with it, and becoming so intimately familiar with this music shakes it from its familiarity. It’s exhaustive and exhausting, and it connects me to each piece in a unique way. The immersion becomes even more intense when it’s not just one work, but a body of work. I come face to face with every tiny detail of the piece and the minutiae of my own playing and choices, working out every detail while putting it in context, taking a micro and macro view of each piece and how it relates to its siblings. It’s a testament to these concertos that having played them all my life, and even after this immersion, the music still manages to surprise me.”