MENDELSSOHN – BRAHMS – MARTIN – SCHUBERT – RETO REICHENBACH, PIANO
Felix MENDELSSOHN: Variations Sérieuses in D Minor, Op. 54, MWV U 156 – Johannes BRAHMS: Variationen und Fuge über ein Thema von Händel, Op. 24: I. Thema und Variationen – Variationen und Fuge über ein Thema von Händel, Op. 24: II. Fuge – Frank MARTIN: Fantaisie sur des Rythmes Flamenco: No. 1 Rumba lente – Fantaisie sur des Rythmes Flamenco: No. 2 Rumba rapide – Fantaisie sur des Rythmes Flamenco: No. 3 Soleares – Fantaisie sur des Rythmes Flamenco: No. 4 Petenera – Franz SCHUBERT: Fantasy in C Major, Op. 15, D. 760 “Wanderer”: I. Allegro con fuoco ma non troppo – Fantasy in C Major, Op. 15, D. 760 “Wanderer”: II. Adagio – Fantasy in C Major, Op. 15, D. 760 “Wanderer”: III. Presto – Fantasy in C Major, Op. 15, D. 760 “Wanderer”: IV. Allegro.
Reto Reichenbach, piano. http://www.retoreichenbach.ch/
Theme and Variations
Ever since my youth, I‘ve been hugely fascinated by large cyclic piano works. As a teenager, I was struck in sheer amazement by the breadth and power of these masterpieces. Later came the pride and satisfaction when I dared to perform these pieces myself as a pianist. Today, one of the most wonderful things I can experience is to be able to recreate, so to speak, a great work under my fingers and allow my audience to partake in this process. The „emergence“ of a work can be particularly well perceived in a set of variations since the entire composition derives from a single theme. Furthermore, variations are played from beginning to end without interruption – unlike a sonata in several movements, for example – which allows the performer to build long musical arcs of tension, despite generally rapid changes in the sound colour and articulation.
The album‘s title „Theme and Variations“ is admittedly not entirely accurate, since only half of the recorded works are variations in the true sense of the word. The decision to place all the selected works under this title nevertheless seems coherent to my eye. Perhaps the following comments will help the listener to focus on one or the other detail, especially from this thematic point of view.