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Malcuzynski: Chopin Piano Sonatas Nos. 2 & 3 (rec. 1953) - Angel 36122

$8.00 USD

Angel (LP)

Jacket EX / LP NM / US pressing

This beautiful LP from Angel (36122, US pressing, blue label, mono) features Witold Malcuzynski’s magisterial accounts of Chopin’s Piano Sonatas No. 2 in B-flat minor Op. 35 and No. 3 in B minor Op. 58, both set down at EMI Studio No. 3, Abbey Road, London, the former in March 1953 and the latter in January 1952.


Of EMI’s CD re-issue of these performances in their “Icon” series, the wonderful critic Jed Distler wrote for ClassicsToday:

“A popular pianist in his day, Witold Malcuzynski’s reputation has been in eclipse since his death in 1977. Several reissues appeared with little fanfare, notably a two disc “Artist Profile” EMI Chopin compilation and a selection of 1946/7 shellac discs from Pearl. With Malcuzynski’s centenary on the horizon for 2014, Warner Classics now releases an eight disc “Icon” box set devoted to this almost forgotten yet deserving Polish pianist.

“The B-flat Minor Sonata is better than I remember it from my long “de-collected” LP copy. Some of the first movement’s point making impedes the music’s flow, but the Scherzo movement’s outer sections and Trio are distinctively characterized, while the pianist grasps the terrifying quick chord-octave leaps with the utmost assurance and ferocity. A slow but limpidly sustained Funeral March leads into a suave, understated account of the two-handed unison finale.”


And in his Art of the Piano David Dubal has written that "[Malcuzynski] was immersed in a nostalgic and idiosyncratic style. He could be original and eccentric within the same piece; spontaneous and prosaic passages abound in his nevertheless fascinating playing."


Incidentally, the strking cover portrait of Chopin is that by Gustave Courbet. There are fine liner notes on the reverse side of the jacket by Leonard Duck, printed in English only.


The gradations of condition I use are as follows: MINT, Near-Mint, Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.

The condition of the jacket is EXCELLENT. There is minor bumping to the upper- and lower-right corners, but that is all. There are no bends, seamsplits, owners’ markings, or other defects, and the album remains solid, bright, and highly attractive – an excellent collector's copy.

The condition of the LP itself is near-MINT. Though the surfaces are not perfectly silent (and thus I have rated it NM vs. MINT) this is a fine copy and playback is superb. If you must have perfect surfaces, then please do not buy this LP. Overall, this rates as a NM collector's copy.



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