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Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)

Posted By: Designol
Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)

Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; Four Dances (2012)
Alessandro Marangoni (piano); Malmö Symphony Orchestra; Andrew Mogrelia, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 332 Mb | Scans included
Classical | Label: Naxos | # 8.572823 | Time: 01:16:41

Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s two Piano Concertos form a contrasting pair. Concerto No 1, written in 1927, is a vivid and witty example of his romantic spirit, exquisite melodies and rich yet transparent orchestration. Concerto No 2, composed a decade later, is a darker, more dramatic and virtuosic work. The deeply-felt and dreamlike slow movement and passionate finale are tinged with bleak moments of sombre agitation, suggestive of unfolding tragic events with the imminent introduction of the Fascist Racial Laws that led Castelnuovo-Tedesco to seek exile in the USA in 1939. The Four Dances from ‘Love’s Labour’s Lost’, part of the composer’s recurring fascination for the art of Shakespeare, are atmospheric, richly characterised and hugely enjoyable. This is their first performance and recording.

Both of the piano concertos heard here were written early in the career of Italian composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, before his flight from Nazism (he was of Jewish background) and move to Hollywood, where he became a successful film composer. But there's a cinematic quality to the music, which brings to mind Audrey Hepburn cavorting in a Roman fountain. The Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor, Op. 92, is heftier and more intricately structured than the early Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 46, which consists largely of strings of attractive melodies. Nobody would claim either work as profound, but they are airy and evocative pieces that would succeed as light interludes in a program of major Romantic concertos. Neither piece is frequently performed, but both are more common than the Four Dances from Love's Labor's Lost, composed in 1953, which were thought to have been lost in the Florence floods of 1966 but have surfaced in a copy owned by the composer's family. These little Spanish-flavored dances reveal some weaknesses in the strings of the Malmö Symphony Orchestra under Andrew Mogrelia, but the performances by pianist Alessandro Marangoni are sprightly and enthusiastic. Frothy but for many listeners probably irresistible.

Review by James Manheim, Allmusic.com

The Naxos 20th Century Italian Classics series stutters on and Castelnuovo-Tedesco is featured now for the third time. His Shakespeare obsession does not retreat. There are two volumes available of his Shakespeare Overtures (8.572500 and 8.572501). In fact I reviewed one of them in February 2011. There are also two Shakespeare operas including All’s Well that Ends Well not to mention 35 sonnets and all of the available poems.

While the major works here are the two piano concertos the charming Four Dances from Love’s Labour’s Lost immediately took my fancy. This recording also constitutes their first performance. Conductor Alessandro Marangoni who has also written briefly about this in the booklet notes has resuscitated the score. There are four movements, which certainly make no attempt to be quasi-Elizabethan, you may be glad to hear. It’s something which English composers often did, normally sending us off into the embarrassed corner. We do have a Sarabande and a Gavotte for each of the King of Navarre and the Princess of France. There is also a Spanish Dance for the comical Don Adriano: witty music but not quite capturing the full benefit of his character. Finally there’s a jaunty Russian Dance for the Masque, which is the comical climax to the play in Act V. It’s wonderful that this colourful score has been dug up. I for one, especially enjoyed it.

I would like to describe the Piano Concerto No. 1 as gay but I have a feeling that although it describes perfectly this happy work I should use the word jaunty. It is in three movements and both of the outer ones are full of bravura, excitable rhythms and colourful orchestration. The third is something approaching a tarantella at times. The nicely detailed booklet notes by Graham Woods talk of “good-humoured vigour” which is much better than my words but there are also lyrical tendencies. There’s a lovely cello solo in the first movement and in the central section of the third. The movement that really caught my fancy was the middle Andantino alla Romanza. The opening tune is almost folk-like, a sort of Mediterranean version of a Rachmaninov romantic melody found in his last two concertos. Whereas the Russian tends towards dark passion Castelnuovo-Tedesco is more song-like, simple and sunlit. I was delighted to make the acquaintance of this work although for 1927 it must have seemed a little anachronistic. The performance is all you might want and the recording excellent and immediate.

I’m sorry to say that I haven’t particularly taken to the Piano Concerto No. 2. On the other hand, it may not be exactly the work that the composer intended. It seems that the plates and the original materials were lost in the Florence floods of 1966 but a score of sorts had been placed in America. Even so, some reconstruction has proven necessary. This has been done by Marangoni who says in his brief note that he wishes to thank the “composer’s daughter for loaning me the manuscript”.

The work is in three movements with a Romanza second. The opening seems to come out of rather weak Tchaikovsky. The whole movement feels over-indulgent in its out-dated romanticism. The second subject, when played by the piano, will remind you of Rachmaninov in Mediterranean mood. The Romanza lurches around and has little character. It’s not until the finale, Vivo e impetuoso, that something genuinely personal seems to emerge. It spins interestingly out of the Romanza and skips along à la Litolff. The piano is, throughout, more integrated with the orchestra than in the First Concerto although there is a fine cadenza. It may be that I am being a bit harsh or that I am out of sorts with this piece however I do like the finale. All that said, I’m not at all sure that if I shall return to it that often.

More sympathetically I must add that the Swedish orchestra play as if they have been familiar with this music for years. They are aided by Marangoni’s scholarship to say nothing of the background work and enthusiasm of Andrew Mogrelia. The recording is good standard Naxos house-sound. If you fancy piano concerto by-ways then at Naxos prices you can’t go far wrong.

Review by Gary Higginson, Musicweb-International.com


Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)



Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)



Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)



rec. Concert Hall of the Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Malmö, Sweden, 23-27 May 2011

Tracklist:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 46 (1927)
01. I. Allegro giusto (12:06)
02. II. Andantino alla romanza - (8:43)
03. III. Vivo e festoso (8:27)

Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 92 (1936/37)
04. I. Vivace e brillante (11:03)
05. II. Romanza, tranquillo e meditativo - (10:37)
06. III. Vivo e impetuoso (9:37)

Four Dances from Love’s Labour’s Lost, Op. 167 (1953)
07. Sarabande (5:35)
08. Gavotte (3:51)
09. Spanish Dance (3:12)
10. Russian Dance (3:30)


Exact Audio Copy V1.1 from 23. June 2015

EAC extraction logfile from 16. January 2016, 23:32

Castelnuovo-Tedesco / Piano Concertos - Alessandro Marangoni

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Track 6

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Track 7

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Track 8

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Track 9

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Track 10

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All tracks accurately ripped

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==== Log checksum 71A6C373402CA6FB960ABF0D959CC90B4AC9068B9E12636ED7ECEC5B9BA71753 ====

foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2017-09-13 13:38:07

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Castelnuovo-Tedesco / Piano Concertos - Alessandro Marangoni (piano), Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Andrew Mogrelia
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR15 -5.29 dB -25.51 dB 12:06 01-No.1 in G minor, Op.46 - I. Allegro giusto
DR15 -4.82 dB -26.47 dB 8:43 02-No.1 in G minor, Op.46 - II. Andantino alla romanza -
DR13 -3.68 dB -22.14 dB 8:27 03-No.1 in G minor, Op.46 - III. Vivo e festoso
DR16 0.00 dB -23.26 dB 11:03 04-No.2 in F major, Op.92 - I. Vivace e brillante
DR15 -7.94 dB -30.32 dB 10:37 05-No.2 in F major, Op.92 - II. Romanza, tranquillo e meditativo -
DR15 -0.56 dB -21.51 dB 9:37 06-No.2 in F major, Op.92 - III. Vivo e impetuoso
DR13 -6.60 dB -24.37 dB 5:35 07-4 Dances from 'Love's Labour's Lost', Op.167 - Sarabande
DR14 -9.23 dB -28.23 dB 3:51 08-4 Dances from 'Love's Labour's Lost', Op.167 - Gavotte
DR14 -3.03 dB -23.39 dB 3:12 09-4 Dances from 'Love's Labour's Lost', Op.167 - Spanish Dance
DR14 0.00 dB -21.11 dB 3:30 10-4 Dances from 'Love's Labour's Lost', Op.167 - Russian Dance
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 10
Official DR value: DR14

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 632 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)

Alessandro Marangoni, Malmö SO, Andrew Mogrelia - Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2; 4 Dances (2012)

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