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Thread: Recommended Recording of Debussy's Piano Works

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    Default Recommended Recording of Debussy's Piano Works

    I am looking for a more recent recording of Debussy's piano music. I have came across Roge, Thibaudet and Arrau's collection. Which one is the best?

    P.S. I already have Gieseking's collection and Zimerman's preludes.

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    The recent Chandos recordings of Debussy's piano works (5 vols.) performed by Jean-Efflam Bavouzet are exquisite. They are my contemporary recording of choice (I have the classic Gieseking set as well as Uchida's marvelous recording of the Etudes).



    Pascal Roge's recent efforts have also been highly acclaimed, although I cannot speak directly of them... not having heard them. Nevertheless, Roge is quite marvelous at capturing the more Impressionistic French piano music.

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    Etudes-Boffard, Preludes-Jacobs. Others with Jacobs, Michelangeli, Weissenberg, Crossley, Moravec.

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    Although I've given up with most of my piano music, Arrau's double album of Preludes issued on the Phillips original sticks with me. Although the Penguin Guide calls him an Encyclopaedist (a virtuoso pianist who plays breadth, rather than specialised repertoire), his works are very moving and extremely well recorded with just enough foregrounding of the piano's timbres without being too in-yer-face.

    The Gieseking classic suggests that you might need to look a bit more recent than Thibaudet, Roge or Arrau. Arrau's version is not recent - I bought mine when I was a student in Paris over 15 years ago. Unless it's been reissued or something of late. The Thibaudet version is typically Thibaudet - narcissistic and self-focussed whereas the Roge is interesting, but not perhaps as soft and gentle as Arrau. I'm sure there are other versions worth looking at. Roge does some interesting work on Erik Satie's populist pieces which I still like. Whatever his merits are in playing the Preludes....elude me.

    Arrau it is.

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    I really appreciate the Debussy piano recordings of Francois-Joel Thiollier on Naxos. For me he gets the soft, dreamy quality just right, and the recordings are perfectly atmospheric.

    I was rather surprised: I usually tend to like more expensive, full-price labels both for performance and recording quality, but this is definitely the exception.
    Last edited by hoodjem; Oct-27-2019 at 17:39.

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    “Music makes you feel feelings. Words make you think thoughts. But a song can make you feel a thought.”

    - Yip Harburg

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoodjem View Post
    I really appreciate the Debussy piano recordings of Francois-Joel Thiollier on Naxos. For me he gets the soft, dreamy quality just right, and the recordings are perfectly atmospheric.

    I was rather surprised: I usually tend to like more expensive, full-price labels both for performance and recording quality, but this is definitely the exception.
    There's plenty of incredible recorded performances on the Naxos label. Their catalogue is a treasure to the world of classical music. Having said that, I have not heard the Thiollier, but now I want to.

    I've been enjoying Pascal Rogé's Debussy a lot lately


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    I have one disc of Roge's DEbussy in the Decca Analog box. A while back, I was looking at nicely priced twofers of Roge and Michaelangeli playing Debussy. Both would duplicate in part recordings I had. I ended up going with Michaelangeli. I should have simply bought both.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jegreenwood View Post
    I have one disc of Roge's DEbussy in the Decca Analog box. A while back, I was looking at nicely priced twofers of Roge and Michaelangeli playing Debussy. Both would duplicate in part recordings I had. I ended up going with Michaelangeli. I should have simply bought both.
    Michelangeli is one of the "big name pianists" that I just don't get. That being said, there is one recording of his that I really love: his "Reflets dans l'eau" of Debussy's Images.

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