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Introducing Sergei Rachmaninoff

Feat. the Master himself

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There are many things that can obstruct a composer's career: melancholy and depression can paralyse even the most talented artist.

Which is exactly what happened to Sergej Rachmaninoff. As a boy and a young man he showed huge musical promise, sparkling with talent, both as a pianist and a composer. But some crushing reviews, coupled with family losses and difficult personal circumstances, quickly gave rise to a huge artistic block. Indeed his musical comeback was only made possible through much effort on his own part and the help of those who believed in him. On top of that, the political situation in Russia was not easy for Rachmaninoff, driving him at the beginning of the 20th century to Dresden and later to America. He never completely overcame his depressions, but nevertheless – or perhaps even because of them – Rachmaninoff’s complete works are now regarded as essential to the late Romantic period. Here we present five wonderful examples.

Curation: Natascha Klotschkoff

Speaker: David Hall

  • Introducing Sergei Rachmaninoff

  • An introduction to Rachmaninoff — Symphony No. 2 in e minor op. 27

  • Symphony No. 2 in e minor op. 27 Preview Only

    Sergei Rachmaninoff

    Mariss Jansons, Royal Concertgebouw Orkest Amsterdam2010
  • An introduction to Rachmaninoff — Piano Concerto No. 2 in c minor op. 18

  • Piano Concerto No. 2 in c minor op. 18 Preview Only

    Sergei Rachmaninoff

    Gabriela Montero, Carlos Miguel Prieto, YOA Orchestra of the Americas2013
  • An introduction to Rachmaninoff — Cello Sonata in g minor op. 19

  • Cello Sonata in g minor op. 19 Preview Only

    Sergei Rachmaninoff

    Jamie Walton, Daniel Grimwood2009
  • An introduction to Rachmaninoff — Die Toteninsel op. 29

  • Die Toteninsel op. 29 Preview Only

    Sergei Rachmaninoff

    Vladimir Jurowski, London Philharmonic Orchestra2004
  • An introduction to Rachmaninoff — Vesper op. 37

  • Vesper op. 37 Preview Only

    Sergei Rachmaninoff

    Simon Halsey, London Symphony Chorus2014

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