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Beethoven's earlier piano concertos can sometimes be overshadowed by his better known Emperor Concerto, but here is some great music, played not in authentic style by today's standards, but on modern instruments to perfection, 1960's style, in a superbly disciplined, tuneful and polished performance. Neither Kempff nor the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra need an introduction in musical or wider circles and of course nor does DGG in their ability to produce almost unfailingly excellent recorded sounds over a period spanning many years. Ferdinand Leitner was perhaps best known as an opera conductor, but here, together with his illustrious collaborators, achieves outstanding results. Superbly drilled playing, the orchestra making its mark in the three minute march-like introduction, played to perfection. Great pianism (NB: the treacherous double glissando in the Right Hand at 9:28 does not disappoint). Moments of delicacy throughout; always poised solo playing. Ever present warmth. Forward-looking lighter moments in the finale (at around 2:45 an almost boogie-woogie bass line can be heard!). Great Beethoven. Excellent transfer of an already successful, well recorded performance. The sound glows. Highly recommended.
Title: Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 1 In C Major
Artist(s): Piano – Wilhelm Kempff
Conductor – Ferdinand Leitner
Orchestra – Berliner Philharmoniker
Recording Info: Recorded by DGG 1962
Engineer - Werner Wolf
Recording Supervisor - Otto Gerdes
1. Allegro Con Brio 14:25
2. Largo 11:59
3. Rondo - Allegro Scherzando Cadenza – Wilhelm Kempff 9:20