I’ve been obsessed with barere for years now. Imo he’s one of the purest Lisztians there ever was. His Liszt Sonata, funerailles, hr12, sonetto 104, Spanish rhapsody, gounod waltz, concerto 1, and Don Juan fantasy are all among my favourite recs of those works. Everything else he recorded is excellent , Chopin ballade 4, fantasy, scherzo 3, grand polonaise, Islamey, Beethoven op110, carnaval, Rachmaninoff concerto 2, etc. Honestly there isn’t one barere rec that isn’t at least very good.
I wish there were more recs of him, but his rep was super narrow, so besides scrib4, some of the scrib op42 etudes, Schumann symph etudes, Strauss - godowsky fledermaus, Chopin scherzo4, Liszt polonaise 2 and sonetto 123, TEs in Db and f, and a few shorter pieces, most of his 1940s rep is on record. There is a recital program I saw of his that lists medtner pieces, but no specifics given.
So what do you think of this legend? What are your favourite recs? Which works do you wish he’d played?
I’ll post all the barere recs again if anyone needs to get re-acquainted.
This dude rarely practiced, I reckon he kept a decent sized rep from pieces dat he learned under da guidance of Essipova.
Favorite recz, I would juz start with his live stuff, the Rach 2 on the Carnegie set has a wonderfully huge projecting sound that you juz can’t from the HMV 30’s recz.
Honestly, too much to list…
I found every single Barere rec tru, you have the Father and Son CD tru, with da 1948 Liszt 1 not the same one as Carnigga.
It would be interesting to hear a few more Chopetz, da 10-1 was in hiz rep. I’m sure he fucked around wiz da 10-2 with fingerz like dat.
His Feux Follets would have been interesting.
I would certainly have appreciated a Godowsky Fledermaus, More Chopetz and Scribets and the Schumann Symphonic etudes.
A prof of mine at uilliard told me dat BAR didn’t make it big because he clearly is inferior to Horowitz in every way. A crock of horseshit haha.
I love his 4th Ballade of Chopin too, the second half is INSANE especially… he really makes it sound like an epic sheeyeat!
tru, way too many to list. Chris is right, every single fucking rec is legendary and he didn’t even own a piano.
His son remembers da few times that he practiced, he tried out random passages from his rep, and then worked on Chopin’s B minor sonata all day.
He also had da Scriabin Sonatas 4 and 5 in hiz rep, da 5th would have sounded something like FEINBERG.
My favourite of his recs are Liszt sonata, liszt concerto, blumenfeld etude, schumann toccata, weber perpetuum mobile, Chopin 10/4. Actually, I think I more or less like all the pieces on your list except the opening tutti of the grande polonaise brillante (the tempo was a bit unsteady for my taste).
Hofmann’s not always modern, he plays his hands together for the most part but he does things like inner voices and other “cutesy” effects like reverse accents and piano subito (e.g. coda of 4th ballade) which can be annoying.
Sometimes I like inner voices (e.g. he emphasised a different voice at the climax of Clair de Lune) but other times I find it distracting.
Randomly, I went to find that Barere recording, because it’s been years since I heard it, and I realised that I never ripped that CD.
Would someone mind uploading it for me?
Barere, described using the words of the italian piano critic Piero Rattalino as “the only pianist that, technically, could create some trouble even to Horowitz” was a great pianist indeed. If you listen Schumann’s Toccata or Liszt Gnomernreigen or some Chopin studies you can see a real virtuoso without limits.