Hannes Minnaar / Jan Willem de Vriend / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra

Piano Concertos nos. 1 & 2

Price: € 20.95
Format: SACD
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917271225
Catnr: CC 72712
Release date: 03 February 2016
✓ in stock
€ 20.95
Challenge Classics
Catalogue number
CC 72712
Release date
03 February 2016

""There is a lot in the sonics and basic approach to Beethoven in this disc that may serve that later work very well.""

Fanfare, 01-11-2016

About the album

Before we listen to the young Dutch pianist Hannes Minnaar play Beethoven’s first two piano concertos, it is perhaps interesting to see how another young pianist may have played them once, long ago – a German who lived in Vienna, a headstrong and temperamental genius. His name? Ludwig van Beethoven. His pupil, the famous composer of etudes and sensitive observer Carl Czerny, once described his playing: “[...] characterised by passionate strength, alternated with all the charm of a smooth cantabile. The expressiveness is often intensified to extremes, particularly when the music tends towards humour [...] Passages become extremely daring by use of the pedal [...] His playing does not possess that clean and brilliant elegance of certain other pianists. On the other hand, it was spirited, grand and, especially in the adagio, filled with emotion and romanticism.” Strength. Smoothness. Humour. Focus on these aspects and you will come close to Beethoven. Minnaar, De Vriend and The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra play the concertos in reverse order: first 2, then 1.Artistically, it is highly defensible: introduced as it were by the more balanced, more modest Piano Concerto no. 2, no. 1 radiates all the more festiveness (trumpets, clarinets and tympani have come to join the orchestra). Perhaps the lovely, gentle, almost feminine B flat major of Concerto no. 2 would not have been able to hold its own after the male and martial C major. But there is something else. You see, Piano Concerto no. 2 actually came first. It was composed earlier, at least in its initial version.
Het tweede deel uit een succesvolle serie met Pianoconcerten van Beethoven
Dit is het tweede album uit de serie met pianoconcerten van Beethoven, uitgevoerd door Hannes Minnaar, Jan Willem de Vriend en het Nederlands Symfonieorkest. Het bevat de eerste twee pianoconcerten.

Het is misschien interessant om voor het beluisteren van het album te kijken naar Beethovens eigen uitvoeringen van deze pianoconcerten. Zijn leerling Carl Czerny beschreef zijn speelstijl als “[...] characterised by passionate strength, alternated with all the charm of a smooth cantabile. The expressiveness is often intensified to extremes, particularly when the music tends towards humour.” Een pianist moet dus focussen op kracht, soepelheid en humor om de in de buurt te komen van de stijl van Beethoven.

Het tweede pianoconcert wordt op dit album voor het eerste gespeeld. Is dat niet vreemd? Er zijn in ieder geval goede redenen voor. Het Tweede Pianoconcert werd eerder gecomponeerd dan het eerste. Er is ook een artistieke reden: Het tweede pianoconcert is bescheiden, terwijl het eerste pianoconcert door het gebruik van trompetten, klarinetten en pauken feestelijk klinkt. Wellicht kan het lieflijke, haast vrouwelijk Bes groot van het tweede pianoconcert zich niet staande houden na het krijgshaftige en mannelijke C groot van het eerste pianoconcert.

Hannes minnaar is een van de meest interessante en gewilde pianisten van zijn generatie. Zijn albums zijn goed ontvangen door de critici. Zijn debuutalbum werd bekroond met een Edison. Bovendien is de pers ook enthousiast over het eerste deel uit deze albumreeks, met de laatste pianoconcerten van Beethoven. Zo schreef BBC Music Magazine: “Characterful accounts of Beethoven's final two piano concertos from a young Dutch pianist already making an impressive mark. His lively grace is matched by the sensitive Netherlands musicians and De Vriend”.
Nachdem Hannes Minaar, Jan Willem de Vriend und das Netherlands Symphony Orchestra in den vergangenen Jahren mit den beiden letzten Klavierkonzerten von Beethoven einen neuen Zyklus von Gesamteinspielungen begannen, folgen nun die beiden ersten Konzerte der Gattung. Und wieder führen sie die Nummerierung ad absurdum und drehen die Reihenfolge um: Auf das zweite Klavierkonzert folgt auf dieser Einspielung das erste. Zumindest numerisch. Künstlerisch gesehen wird diese Entscheidung jedoch mehr als plausibel. Während das zweite Klavierkonzert ausgewogen und maßvoll ist, strahlt das erste förmlich vor Festlichkeit mit seiner ausgeprägteren Orchestrierung in munterem C-Dur. Außerdem komponierte Beethoven die Urfassung des zweiten Konzertes bereits vor dem ersten.

Pressestimmen (Vol. 1, Klavierkonzerte 4&5)

"So spannungsgeladen und frisch kommt einem dieses pianistische Standard-Konzertrepertoire Beethovens selten und schon lange nicht mehr auf CD entgegen wie bei Hannes Minnaar, Jan Willem de Vriend und dem Netherlands Symphony Orchestra." BR Klassik

"Selten klangen diese beiden Schlachtrösser so "befreit", so punktgenau präzis, so ätherisch-schön und so visionär modern." Crescendo

"Hannes Minnaar weiß genau, worauf es ankommt: die Mischung zwischen lyrischen Momenten, die feinsinnig austariert werden, und den drastischen, für Beethoven typischen Ausbrüche, die kraftvolles Zupacken verlangen." Piano News


Hannes Minnaar received international acclaim after winning prizes at the Queen Elisabeth Competition (3rd prize) and the Geneva International Music Competition (2nd prize). He studied with Jan Wijn at the Amsterdam Conservatory, graduating with the highest distinction and took Master classes with Alfred Brendel, Menahem Pressler and Ferenc Rados. In addition, he studied organ with Jacques van Oortmerssen.

Minnaar was soloist with various orchestras, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, during which time he worded with conductors such as Marin Alsop, Herbert Blomstedt, Frans Brüggen, Eliahu Inbal and Edo de Waart. He gives recitals in many European countries and around the world. He performed at the Royal Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Gewandhaus (Leipzig) and Musashino Hall (Tokyo) and was invited to the festivals of La Roque d’Anthéron, Bordeaux (Jacobins), Bahrein and Guangzhou.

Minnaar is also active as a chamber musician. His Van Baerle Trio won prizes at competitions in Lyon (CIMCL, 1st prize) and Munich (ARD, 2nd prize). Last season, the trio gave 18 concerts in an international tour in the “Rising Stars” series, including the Barbican, Musikverein (Vienna) and Cité de la Musique (Paris). Minnaar also performed with musicians such as Janine Jansen, Isabelle van Keulen and Mischa Maisky.

His two solo albums are highly acclaimed. His debut album was awarded an Edison and Gramophone published a full-page article about this album. The same magazine wrote this about his second album “Bach inspirations”: “After Minnaar’s debut disc, this makes two hits in a row”. BBC Music Magazine selected it as “Instrumental choice of the month” with 5 stars.

Future concert highlights include Liszt’s Totentanz and a new concerto by Robert Zuidam with the Radio Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Markus Stenz, Beethoven Piano Concerto 4 with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Jiří Bělohlávek, Beethoven Piano Concerto 5 with the BBC Philharmonic conducted by Juanjo Mena and the London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Manfred Honeck.



"There is a lot in the sonics and basic approach to Beethoven in this disc that may serve that later work very well."
Fanfare, 01-11-2016

No Quote     
Artamag, 04-10-2016

"De Vriend and Minnaar are a good duo. They give each other space, but - if necessary - they are firmly on each others skin."
Katholiek Nieuwsblad, 30-9-2016

Plaatpaal Radio 4
NTR Radio 4 Plaatpaal, 11-7-2016

Klassieke Zaken, 01-7-2016

"[...] Again, his range of touch is highly effective, and there is a pleasing mix of finesse and drive in the concerto’s closing moments."
gramophone, 01-5-2016

LUISTER 10 ***** " What a joy to listen to! Everything is right. [...] "
Luister, 08-4-2016

"As a duo, Minnaar and De Vriend fill each other in perfectly."
Piano Wereld, 05-4-2016

" [...] You only really experience good music during a concert. [...] "
Piano Wereld, 05-4-2016

Luister 10 - "This seems to be a complete series that belongs in the premiere league of the discography of these concertos."
Luister Magazine, 01-4-2016

"Minaar interprets both pieces with rare calm and composure, giving them an almost narrative character."
Crescendo, 01-4-2016

"The first two concerts on this Super Audio cd sound beautifully balanced."
Nederlands Dagblad, 18-3-2016

"The second cd, with the concerts nr. 1 and 2, is just such a high level as the legacy 4 and 5. Minnaars Beethovens are Kader, unafraid, decidedly and almost carelessly virtuoso, but he also leaves room for tenderness and vulnerability. Beautiful."
Het Parool, 14-3-2016

"The recordings of both concerts are beautiful.The cd has SACD-quality. This gives it  a fullness in sound which is compelling. In short, wonderful cd. "   
Friesch Dagblad, 10-3-2016

"The symbiosis between pianist, Orchestra and conductor is at triumvirate lover, the friend and the Dutch musicians just ideal. The one-time Orchestra sound, the slightly different mood of the piano, but above all the musical poetry of Hannes Minnaar make this Beethoven integral even for the final conclusion to a one-time event where referred to is going to be for a long time."
Opus klassiek, 06-3-2016

"The musical covenant that the pianist and the conductor have concluded, is clearly audible. Minnaar gives great direction to everything he plays. So here too, and his solo cadenza in the second concerto is a smart example of that. De Vriend stirs it all up wonderfully."
Trouw, 19-2-2016

"His style may perhaps best be characterized as sensitively romantic, musicall inventive, with much tonal beauty and fluent precision. Power play doesn't seem to be Minnaar's prime trade; his 'power' comes from well-chosen accentuation and subtle shifting from piano to forte, adequately supported and, where needed intensified by the Vriend"
HRAudio.net, 09-2-2016

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