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Grigory Sokolov: Schubert | Beethoven / Buffalo News review

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Schubert and Beethoven, Piano Works, with encores by Rameau and Brahms, performed by pianist Grigory Sokolov (Deutsche Grammophon, two discs).

Live recordings from pianist Sokolov's recent recitals in Warsaw collect the 65-year old Russian pianist playing Beethoven's "Hammerklavier" Sonata, Schubert's sublime Impromptus D. 899 and Three Piano Pieces D.946, piano transcriptions of harpsichord pieces by Rameau and Brahms' B-Flat major Intermezzo. This is a full program from Sokolov, right from its magnificent opening with Schubert's C-minor Impromptu.

Beethoven's monumental and daunting "Hammerklavier" is performed by Sokolov not as the mind-and-digit buster that it can be bur rather as a supremely logical setting for its fiendish fugue. It's a stellar two-disc compilation of live performances from a pianist who has sometimes been noted for both the paucity of his performances outside Russia and recordings. Not anymore.

3.5 stars (out of four) - Jeff Simon  SEE FULL Buffalo News PAGE