Beethoven: 32 Sonatas (Sold Out)
Performed by Robert Silverman
An OrpheumMasters 10-CD Box Set (KSP 830)
This album was named to the top 10 CDs of 2000 by Soundstage.com
, placed on Audiophilia.com
's "A List", and was short-listed for a Juno Award for 2000 (Canadian equivalent of a Grammy). Alas, the entire run of 1500 -- a huge
number for a multi-disc set, given the current state of the classical music recording industry (or what's left of it) -- is now sold out, but the files from which the CDs were made are available for purchase. Click on the Contact section for more information.
"I cannot remember enjoying the complete Beethoven sonatas as much as in these utterly engaging performances by Robert Silverman...Silverman plays these masterpieces as musically as anyone I have ever heard. The music is first, not the playing of the music. He plays them naturally, as if he has lived with them all his life ... His rendition (of the Pathétique) impressed me as the most tragic-sounding performance I have ever heard from any pianist. Few pianists utilize pauses as effectively as Silverman; they are literally breathtaking ... His ability to balance the various components of the last movement makes it a truly poetic performance...Very few pianists I've heard can do much more than just get through the turgidity of the (op. 106, the Hammerklavier) fugue of fugues, but Silverman's clear conception of the movement's destination enables him to cut through its seeming awkwardness with insight and imagination. Silverman's reverence for the (late sonatas) carries the day. He revels in Beethoven's ability to save us from the existential abyss with a glorious fugue. Few musicians so convincingly detail the thrill of fuguing their way into one of Beethoven's greatest apotheoses as does Silverman ... I recommend these as highly as possible."
...Fanfare, May-June 2004 (Complete 4-page review available upon request)
"This is aristocratic playing, yet humble as well, in its approach to Beethoven's text. Silverman is a religious man in the largest sense. He takes in and personalizes the composer's spirit without violating it. This is the highest form of art."
I thought of kicking myself after hearing the first couple of CDs from Robert Silvermans new ten-volume set of the 32 Beethoven Piano Sonatas. So involving is the music making, I wished I had attended his live performances in Toronto last year. In fact, the Canadian pianist has given recitals of the complete sonatas in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto and Seattle, and did so before committing the music to disc. From the reviews quoted in his press package, the qualities of the concerts reflect much of the magnificent music making found on the new CDs.