Pixis: Piano Concerto In C; Piano Concertino In E Flat; Thalberg: Piano Concerto In F Minor

Fri, Dec 21, 2012, 00:00

Tasmanian SO/Howard Shelley (piano), Hyperion CDA67915 ****

Johann Peter Pixis (1788-1874) and Sigismond Thalberg (1812-1871) were both big names in 19th-century piano playing. Thalberg was talked of in the same breath as Liszt; Chopin dedicated his Fantasy on Polish Airs to Pixis. The two, now almost forgotten, contributed to Liszt’s composite work, Hexameron. These three pieces were written between 1824 and 1830 and sound as if they come from a parallel universe, a world that had known Weber but not Beethoven. Thalberg creates a more heavy-duty workout than the older Pixis, whose style relies heavily on light melodic charm. Howard Shelley and his Tasmanian players spruce up all three pieces nicely. url.ie/4qdb