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Domenico Scarlatti – 18 Keyboard Sonatas – Yevgeny Sudbin (2016) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Domenico Scarlatti – 18 Keyboard Sonatas – Yevgeny Sudbin (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 01:14:30 minutes | 1,12 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: eClassical | © BIS Records
Recorded: July 2014 (K 9, 141, 159, 213), February 2015 (K 12, 29, 32, 69, 99, 119, 125, 417) and July 2015 (K 56, 208, 318, 373, 425, 479) at St George’s Bristol, England

With the 2005 release of his first recording for BIS Records, Yevgeny Sudbin catapulted into the pages of the international music press. The disc was a Scarlatti recital that prompted reviewers worldwide to compare the then 24-year old pianist in the most flattering terms to Scarlatti experts such as Horowitz and Pletnev. It went on to receive a long list of distinctions, including an Editor’s Choice in Gramophone, where the accompanying review described it as ‘among the finest, certainly most enjoyable of all Scarlatti recitals’. Since then, Sudbin and BIS have enjoyed a highly successful collaboration, resulting in numerous acclaimed recordings of both solo programmes and concertos. To celebrate the past 10 years, a new Scarlatti recording seemed the obvious choice for an anniversary present – to ourselves, and of course to all Sudbin fans and Scarlatti lovers. Said and done: Sudbin met up with Marion Schwebel, the recording producer with whom he has collaborated from the very beginning, for recording sessions in the silken acoustics of St George’s in Bristol. The results can be heard on this new disc: 18 sonatas selected from the total of 555 – a collection of a striking, even bewildering, variety. Through it all, Sudbin guides us with authority but also obvious relish as he brings to life elements which his own liner notes describes as ‘church bells and gunshots (K119), howls in the streets (K479), trumpets appearing on the horizon (K159), head-spinning dances (K425) but also a wonderful sense of humour (K125) – as well scenes as melancholic, lean and desiccated as a sun-baked Mediterranean landscape (K99).

The pianist Yevgeny Sudbin here returns to the music of Domenico Scarlatti, ten years after his first Scarlatti recording in 2005 (which was also his first recording for Sweden’s BIS label). Once again he offers heavily pianistic re-imaginations of the music, akin to the approach pioneered by the pianist who first popularized these sonatas, Vladimir Horowitz. There is little concession to the sound the music would have had if it were played on a harpsichord, and in fact, here in his booklet notes, which are just about worth the price of admission by themselves, Sudbin even likens playing the sonatas on the piano to the act of transcribing them. Indeed, the capabilities of one instrument are substituted for those of another. The slow minor-key sonatas, with their tempo rubato and their pedal usage, are in a Chopin mode, and Sudbin takes a good deal of liberty with tempo and ornamentation in the repeats. Sample the Keyboard Sonata in D minor, K. 213 (track 5), or any of the other minor-key sonatas for a taste. Sudbin balances these with brilliant, fast contrapuntal pieces that take the curves quickly; the relationship between harpsichord and guitar is lost, but there’s no question that he’s exciting to hear at high speeds and keeps everything clear. If you’re in the market for extremely pianistic Scarlatti, Sudbin’s unpacks the remarkable dissonances and idiosyncratic structures of the slow sonatas especially well. ~~AllMusic Review by James Manheim

Domenico Scarlatti (1685-1757)
1. Sonata in D minor, K417, ‘Fuga’ 3’37
2. Sonata in A major, K208 3’53
3. Sonata in C major, K159 2’29
4. Sonata in C minor, K56 3’36
5. Sonata in D minor, K213 7’11
6. Sonata in G major, K125 2’12
7. Sonata in G minor, K373 2’12
8. Sonata in D major, K119 5’16
9. Sonata in F minor, K69 5’09
10. Sonata in G major, K425 2’46
11. Sonata in D major, K29 5’03
12. Sonata in C minor, K99 7’02
13. Sonata in G minor, K12 3’05
14. Sonata in D major, K479 4’32
15. Sonata in D minor, K9 2’43
16. Sonata in F sharp major, K318 6’06
17. Sonata in D minor, K141 3’08
18. Sonata in D minor, K32, ‘Aria’ 2’29

Yevgeny Sudbin, piano


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