The Romantic Piano Concerto 77 – Bronsart & Urspruch
Emmanuel Despax (piano), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Eugene Tzigane (conductor)
The latest release in Hyperion’s highly rewarding Romantic Piano Concerto series features two composers, Bronsart & Urspruch, who moved in Liszt’s Weimar circle. Indeed the former composer actually premiered the revised version of Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in A major, S125.
The pianist in the two contrasting concertos is Emmanuel Despax who combines effectively with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Eugene Tzigane. Bronsart’s Piano Concerto in F sharp minor, Op. 10 is a very grand work that was apparently popular with his contemporaries but is rarely heard nowadays. Urspruch’s Piano Concerto, Op. 9 is another rarity that provides an appropriate contrast to the first piece. We get plenty of Lisztian flourishes from Despax in the first work and he is kept busy in the Ulspruch in which the soloist is more of an equal to the orchestra – exemplary pianism in both works.
With the customary high quality sound recording from the Hyperion engineers this release is more than simply intriguing. Indeed it should be explored by anyone interested in piano music of the romantic period.