Dmitri Shostakovich was enrolled at Petrograd (St Petersburg) Conservatoire in the autumn of 1919, at the tender age of 13. His exceptionally early entry was permitted by Alexander Glazunov himself, the distinguished composer who was then the Conservatoire’s redoubtable director.
The young musician greatly impressed Glazunov, who decided that he could hold his own among older students. Undeterred by the hardships of the Civil War, which focused most minds on finding food and fuel for survival, Shostakovich applied himself industriously to composition under the very able Maximilian Steinberg, who had been a leading pupil (and the son-in-law) of Rimsky- Korsakov.
It was thus inevitable that the young Shostakovich would first absorb the long-established «Russian Style» of Rimsky-Korsakov and his fellow composers of the Mighty Handful.
Total time: 01:08:26
|Original Recording Format|
Everett Porter, Kees de Visser
|Recording Type & Bit Rate|
|Release Date||April 21, 2017|
“The real gem, is the Op. 7 Scherzo, which has its origins in an unfinished piano quintet. Dominated by an irrepressible piano part, it has a bounce and brio that left me wreathed in smiles. Now this is more like the quirky, mischievous composer we know from his later works. Gimeno and his players really seem to be enjoying themselves, and that shows in this easeful and stylish performance. But it’s the now enigmatic, now skein-like Five Fragments that catapults the listener into another world entirely. Given such beautifully nuanced playing and ear-pricking sound, I feel like a churl for panning the first part of this programme. Marina Frolova-Walker’s detailed liner-notes are a welcome bonus.”
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