Music Reviews

The ‘Beethoven Piano Concertos’ You’ve Been Looking For

I’ve been listening for too many years, and loved too many different recordings of the 5 Beethoven Piano Concertos to settle on absolute favorites, but this set comes very close, and it has kept me smiling since it was released last year. 

The estimable Garrick Ohlsson with Sir Donald Runnicles conducting the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra absolutely knock it out of the park. The set was recorded live in 2022, released by famous Reference Recordings in 2023, and critical praise has been almost unanimous. Gramophone, for example: “This is a bouquet of Beethoven concertos like no other.”

Fabulous playing by both the soloist and the orchestra has been perfectly caught by engineer Kevin Harbison and producer Victor Muenzer. You’ll want to put the “Emperor” on and just fall in! These performances just might be the ones you’ve been looking for of all the Concertos.

Written by

Bill Dodd

Bill is Senior Music Reviewer at NativeDSD. He lives in the Portland, Oregon area. He is an avid photographer too! Along with his early interest in broadcasting and high fidelity audio, he was exposed to classical music in small doses from age 5, was given piano lessons from age 9— Starting with Bach and including Gershwin. Successful morning personality in San Francisco at age 22. (true). Sang in choirs in high school and college. Although the broadcasting experience was all in popular music, his personal listening has been mostly classical his whole life—along with others including Benny Goodman, Miles Davis, Dave Brubeck, Joni Mitchell, The Who, and Led Zeppelin.


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