Steinway & Sons releases an album from David Deveau focusing on the theme of the concerto.
David Deveau is joined by the Borromeo String Quartet for chamber arrangements of classical concertos
Where David Deveau’s previous major release from Steinway & Sons, Siegfried Idyll (2015), was centered on three major composers who mastered Romanticism, his new record, Beethoven, Mozart and Harbison (STNS 30099) focuses on the theme of the concerto. This expansive genre plays on the contrast between immense, powerful orchestra and solitary, poignant soloist, both forces working in tandem to form a kind of push and pull between the melody lines of the single individual and the larger sway of the overall ensemble. On this record, Deveau and the Borromeo String Quartet join forces for chamber versions of popular classical concertos, scaled-down arrangements that retain all the drama and character of the originals.
Mozart is a well-known proponent of the concerto, often simultaneously performing the soloist’s part, conducting the orchestra, and improvising cadenzas in one single concert. This virtuosic show of musical ability sparked the rise of the form and created a demand for pared-down arrangements of these works that were more accessible and could be played by at home by classical music connoisseurs, hence the creation of ‘a quattro’ versions with notated parts for just a soloist and a string quartet. Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 14, K. 449, for piano and string quartet opens the album.
A short while later, Beethoven’s own concerto compositions burst onto the classical music scene, and with their rich full-bodied scoring and independent wind parts, they proved more difficult to adapt to a home setting. It was at the behest of a royal musical patron, Prince Lobkowitz of Bohemia, that Beethoven produced a reduced version of his Fourth Piano Concerto with parts for a soloist and a quintet comprised of two violins, two violas and cello—though who exactly penned the arrangement is debated. John Harbison first told Deveau about this concerto reduction in 2002, and he wrote cadenzas for the first and last movements, giving a 21st century flavor to the 1806 themes. The Mozart C Minor Fantasy K. 396 and Harbison’s Anniversary Waltz from a set of four dance vignettes titled Four More Occasional Pieces round out the record.
“This recital was one of those musical events that linger long in the memory – not for grandeur of effect and not for dazzlement, but for lyric expression that goes straight to the heart of the matter.”
The New York Times
About the Artists
Pianist David Deveau enjoys a distinguished career internationally, performing in the US, Canada, the UK, Europe and Asia. He has appeared as soloist with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops; the San Francisco, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Minnesota, Houston and Miami symphony orchestras; the Toulouse Capitole Orchestra in France and the Qingdao Symphony in China. He has toured China, Taiwan and Japan, appearing in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Tianan, Nagoya and Kyoto. He has performed at the festivals of Tanglewood, Wolf Trap, Caramoor, Seattle, Mainly Mozart (San Diego) and was Artistic Director of the Rockport (MA) Chamber Music Festival from 1995-2017. His first recording for Steinway, Siegfried Idyll (2015), was critically acclaimed in the New York Times and Gramophone, and was listed as one of the year’s ten best classical albums by the Boston Globe in 2015. Deveau is on the music faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The Borromeo Quartet performs around the world each season to great critical acclaim, and has presented complete cycles of Beethoven and Bartok string quartets in cities in the US and abroad. The quartet has been in residence at the New England Conservatory for three decades. Jessica Bodner is the violinist of the Parker String Quartet. Thomas van Dyck is a member of the bass section of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
About Steinway & Sons label
The STEINWAY & SONS music label produces exceptional albums of solo piano music across all genres. The label — a division of STEINWAY & SONS, maker of the world’s finest pianos — is a perfect vessel for producing the finest quality recordings by some of the most talented pianists in the world.