Antonín Rejcha (1770-1836) - Thirty-six Fugues for Piano, Op.36 (selection)
1. Allegro - A dur (6/8) 2:26
2. Molto moderato - f moll (4/4) 4:54
3. Allegretto - G dur (6/8) 3:47
4. Allegro - D dur (4/4) 3:25
5. Allegro moderato - g moll (6/8) 2:03
6. Allegro moderato - f moll (4/4) 4:15
7. Allegretto - A/G (2/8) 1:34
8. Allegro moderato - C dur (4/4) 1:31
9. Allegretto - A/F 5:37
10. Allegretto - A/C (4/4) 3:23
11. Allegro - G/D (4/4) 2:26
12. Allegro moderato - G dur 2:03
13. Allegro - D/As (2/2) 2:52
14. Allegro - C/As (2/2) 3:15
15. Allegro - A dur 4:49
16. Allegro moderato - d moll (4/4) 5:18
17. Allegro moderato - C dur (4/2) 3:32
18. Allegro moderato - E/A (2/2) 3:37
19. Poco lento - Es dur/moll 4:10
20. Allegro - G dur (3/4) 2:37
Milan Langer piano
Rejcha's fugal system: a revolution in the most refined musical form.
When confronted with the name of expatriate Czech composer Antonín Rejcha (b. in Prague, 1770; d. in Paris, 1836), for the majority of us it will most likely ring a bell loud only just enough to remind us of his exquisite wind quintets or masterfully orchestrated symphonies. As for professional musicians and other initiated listeners, they will all but certainly recall Rejcha´s impact as a respected and prolific musicologist. Both of the above-mentioned categories, however, can safely be expected to enjoy this freshly-made recording of Rejcha´s piano fugues: to be sure, the former will broaden their horizon by a more complete portrait of Antonín Rejcha, one enriched with an artistic value of true substance; while the latter will finally get a chance to "feel" something they have known from their study of music history as an important theoretical chapter which, however incredible it might seem, has until now failed to reach concert halls and recording studios. Rejcha´s cycle has been sometimes characterized, in a bit of an overstatement perhaps, as "the Well-Tempered Klavier of the new era", due to its negation of the traditional concept of the fugue, a re-formulation going to such depths as to set up an entirely new groundwork for this compositional form.
Acting in tune with the disc´s innovative programming, its interpreter, prominent Czech pianist of the middle generation Milan Langer took up the challenge with a great sense of responsibility, a good deal of theoretical erudition, and with obvious respect for the composer and his notation, yet at the same time also in a truly grand style imbued with inspiration and flawless musical feeling. The record will pleasantly surprise both aficionados of the fugue - that most refined of all musical forms - and lovers of top-class piano playing.
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