'A brave decision but one with spectacular results.' Metro
'Something special, clearly, was going on. And it continues in his latest Chopin collection, which includes the second and third sonatas.' The Herald
'Romantic music comes naturally to Pizarro; his delicate touch and sense of lyrical line in the second and third sonatas are as elegant and assured as these wonderful works demand.' The Observer
Internationally acclaimed pianist Artur Pizarro releases his second disc of Chopin piano music, which together with his celebrated discs of Beethoven piano sonatas, continues his successful partnership with Linn Records.
Pizarro's recording of two of Chopin's finest sonatas is a natural progression from his Beethoven recordings, as the musical modifications Chopin made to the Sonata form clearly built upon the formal boundaries that Beethoven had extended. Chopin introduced multiple changes of rhythm and tempi, often even within individual movements and, like Beethoven, rearranged the movements to include a scherzo as the second movement and a slow third movement. The French pianist Alfred Cortot saw the most important shift from Beethoven's to Chopin's sonatas as the shift from inspiration by the ideals of universality to the suffusion of the music by the composer's personal feelings and emotions.
The famous Funeral March earned the Sonata in B-flat minor the approved title of Sonata fùnebre, however more unkind titles were also attributed to it by Anton Rubinstein named it the "Death poem" and Robert Schumann referred to it as "four of Chopin's maddest children under the same roof". It has been suggested that this sonata was modelled on Beethoven's Sonata Op. 26 in A-flat major, also subtitled "Funeral march", which Chopin often played and taught.
Written five years after the Second Sonata the Sonata in B minor was written in times of tranquillity and relatively good health. The largest of all of Chopin's works for piano solo, it represents the apotheosis of his creativity.
View the booklet in full here.