Christian Thielemann

Christian Thielemann

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Im Keller / In the Basement (2014) – A film by Ulrich Seidl (HD 1080p)














Ulrich Seidl returns to the documentary form with this creepy-funny trawl through Austria's suburban cellars.

Corpulent sex slaves, tuba-playing Nazi obsessives, reborn doll fantasists – just a regular stroll through the neighborhood, then, for patented guru of the grotesque Ulrich Seidl, who makes an intriguing return to documentary filmmaking with "In the Basement". Grabby and grubby in equal measure, this meticulously composed trawl through the contents of several middle-class Austrians' cellars (a space, according to Seidl, that his countrymen traditionally give over to their most personal hobbies) yields more than a few startling discoveries. It's not hard to tell, though, that a mixture of fact and fabrication is at work here. The career-high success of Seidl's recent "Paradise" trilogy should boost the distribution prospects of a niche item that is by turns uproarious, repulsive and oddly touching.

The film aimed for the adult audience.



Το "In the Basement" [πρωτότυπος τίτλος: Im Keller (Στο Υπόγειο)] είναι από εκείνα τα ντοκιμαντέρ που παρακολουθείς με το στόμα ανοιχτό, με μια φυσική δυσπιστία για το αν αυτό που βλέπεις είναι αληθινό ή προσεκτικά στημένο. Ο Αυστριακός σκηνοθέτης Ούλριχ Ζάιντλ παρουσιάζει μια σειρά εκκεντρικών συμπατριωτών του, οι οποίοι τον αφήνουν να μπει στο χώρο όπου φυλάσσουν τα πιο προσωπικά, περίεργα, απίστευτα και, σε μερικές περιπτώσεις, απαγορευμένα μυστικά τους. Φετιχιστές, άτομα απολύτως αφιερωμένα στα σεξουαλικά τους παιχνίδια σαδομαζοχισμού και εξουσίας, πολεμοχαρείς εθνικιστές και (δεν θα μπορούσαν να απουσιάζουν) περήφανοι λάτρεις του Αδόλφου Χίτλερ. Κάποιες απρόσμενα ακραίες σκηνές, έξυπνα συνδυασμένες με μαύρο χιούμορ, προκάλεσαν αντίστοιχες αντιδράσεις.

Η ταινία απευθύνεται σε ενήλικο κοινό.


Im Keller / In the Basement (2014)

A film by Ulrich Seidl

Directed by Ulrich Seidl
Idea & concept: Ulrich Seidl, Veronika Franz
Camera: Martin Gschlacht
Editor: Christopher Brunner
Sound: Ekkehart Baumung
Line producer: Konstantin Seitz
Assistant directors: Daniel Hoesl, Astrid Wolfrig

With Fritz Lang, Alfreda Klebinger, Manfred Ellinger, Inge Ellinger, Josef Ochs, Alessa Duchek, Gerald Duchek, Cora Kitty, Peter Vokurek, Walter Holzer

Production: Austria - Germany, 2014

Ulrich Seidl Film Produktion & coop99 filmproduktion

Produced by Ulrich Seidl
Co-producer: Martin Gschlacht

Spoken language: German
With English, French, Greek, Spanish, Portugese & German subtitles

Runtime: 82 minutes

(HD 1080p)

Uploaded on Youtube for the Blog "Faces of Classical Music"














It's impossible to read even the barest logline for "In the Basement" without thinking immediately of Josef Fritzl and Wolfgang Priklopil, whose unrelated but comparable crimes – the horrific confinement, in their respective basements, of young female victims for years on end – prompted even Austria's political leaders to fear for the country's international image. Recent Austrian cinema hasn't done much to soothe the situation, with numerous works (Markus Schleinzer's "Michael" most directly of all) dwelling on the social aftermath of the cases, as well as their nation’s much-discussed culture of secrecy. Seidl's latest isn’t his first film to fit that bracket, though press notes claim he conceived it years before the Priklopil scandal broke in 2006.

Indeed, the helmer has been upturning the paving stones of Austrian suburbia to unsavory effect throughout his career. The affectionate crowd applause that greeted "In the Basement" at its Venice premiere suggests that his work, through no failing of his own but consistency, may have lost some of its incendiary capacity. What it has regained, however, following the unexpected warmth and qualified optimism of last year's "Paradise: Hope", is some of its chill. From first frame to last, this is an arm's-length exercise in observation, even in scenes of discomfiting intimacy. At least, it poses as one: As in his other documentaries, it's left to the viewer to imagine just how much Seidl has staged or manipulated these human tableaux, though the degree to which they reflect his signature aesthetic and tonal quirks leaves little doubt as to his complicity. (Does everyone in Austria line up their radiators quite so precisely with their narrow, uniformly net-curtained basement windows? Perhaps.)

Things start innocently enough, with a middle-aged, drably-sweatered man (amusingly named Fritz Lang, though the film's participants are identified only in the closing credits) using the acoustics of a cavernous basement to flex his impressive tenor high "C" on a range of operatic standards. That he's doing so before a row of target practice sheets, admittedly, seems a little odd; it emerges that he runs a local shooting gallery, where graying local menfolk come to let off steam and exchange politically incorrect bugbears. Not half as politically incorrect, however, as Josef, a married, mild-mannered fellow whose basement is a densely art-directed gallery of Nazi memorabilia, regarded with little curiosity or concern by his fellow brass-band players who routinely use the space for rehearsals.

Others use their underground space for sexual release: A pneumatic young woman who has quit her job as a supermarket teller to become a prostitute, a former victim of domestic abuse who has found strength in controlled sadomasochism, and a married couple whose indoor relationship is of an extreme mistress-slave nature. The latter subjects gamely provide the film's most queasily NC-17 material, as the heavy-set, hairy-backed Gerald attends to his dominant wife's every whim, licking her genitals clean after urination while his own are subjected to wince-worthy punishment in the couple's crimson sex dungeon. No sections of the film are more haunting, however, than those spent with kindly-looking Alfreda, whose tiny basement storage unit is stacked with creepily lifelike reborn dolls, each one stored in a separate, tissue-lined box, to be removed, cuddled and comforted at will.

Seidl's approach is not to press these ostensibly ordinary folk for expression or explanation; some offer less than others, with the men in particular giving mostly prosaic descriptions of their basements’ contents and histories. We are never told, for example, whether Josef is actually a Nazi sympathizer or whether his disturbing collection is of purely historical interest. (His default reference to the modern-day police as "the Gestapo", however, raises certain inklings.) That affectless approach will frustrate viewers craving more neatly articulated insights into Austria's supposed social singularities; others, meanwhile, will accuse Seidl of not being objective enough, as his stylistic affectations and interferences with reality may create aberrance or uncanniness where there is none. (He has admitted, for example, to constructing a narrative for Alfreda, who is not in fact a doll collector.) Accept his debatable methods, however, and certain profundities emerge: The way several of his female subjects take advantage of below-stairs privacy to reverse conventional gender roles and assert themselves sexually is particularly powerful.

Working for the first time with the brilliant cinematographer Martin Gschlacht – best known for his similarly geometric work with fellow Austrian Jessica Hausner – Seidl has found an ideal creative enabler for his vision. The carefully calibrated gloom of Gschlacht's lighting schemes (all the better to accentuate the frequently bilious colors of the decor) and the sharpness of his seemingly tweezer-set framing often suggests more about these "characters" than they are willing to say about themselves. Christopher Brunner's editing is equally crisp and incisive, and while no production designer is credited, Seidl has apparently chosen subjects who share his eccentric taste in interiors. Even a wall cluttered with African mementoes and macabre taxidermy trophies manages, through Seidl's gaze, to look strangely austere.

Source: Guy Lodge, August 30, 2014 (variety.com)






























































More photos


See also


Maurice (1987) – A film by James Ivory – James Wilby, Hugh Grant, Rupert Graves (HD 1080p)

Shostakovich Against Stalin: The War Symphonies – A Documentary by Larry Weinstein – Netherland Radio Philharmonic, Kirov Orchestra, Valery Gergiev (HD 1080p)


Florence Foster Jenkins (2016) – A film by Stephen Frears – Meryl Streep, Hugh Grant, Simon Helberg (Download the movie)


Son of Saul (2015) – A film by László Nemes – Géza Röhrig, Levente Molnár, Urs Rechn (Download the movie)


Amour (2012) – A film by Michael Haneke – Emmanuelle Riva, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Isabelle Huppert, Alexandre Tharaud (Download the movie)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Katerina Izmailova (Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk), 1966 – A film by Mikhail Shapiro – Galina Vishnevskaya, Konstantin Simeonov


The New Babylon (Novyy Vavilon), 1929 – A film by Grigori Kozintsev & Leonid Trauberg – Music by Dmitri Shostakovich (HD 1080p)


Farinelli (1994) – A film by Gérard Corbiau – Stefano Dionisi, Enrico Lo Verso, Elsa Zylberstein (Download the movie)


Copying Beethoven (2006) – A film by Agnieszka Holland – Ed Harris, Diane Kruger (HD 1080p)


Eroica (The Movie, BBC 2003) by Simon Cellan Jones – Ian Hart, Leo Bill, Claire Skinner, Frank Finlay – John Eliot Gardiner (HD 1080p)


Tous les Matins du Monde / All the Mornings of the World / Όλα τα Πρωινά του Κόσμου (1991) – A film by Alain Corneau (Download the movie)


Death in Venice (1971) – A film by Luchino Visconti – Dirk Bogarde, Björn Andrésen, Silvana Mangano – Music by Gustav Mahler (Download the movie)


Monday, June 19, 2017

Dmitri Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major – Mstislav Rostropovich, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Kirill Kondrashin (May 29, 1960 – Audio video)

Dmitri Shostakovich and Mstislav Rostropovich
















The Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major, Op.107, was composed in 1959 by Dmitri Shostakovich. It is perhaps the most popular 20th Century cello concerto. Shostakovich wrote the work for his friend Mstislav Rostropovich, who committed it to memory in four days and gave the premiere on October 4, 1959, with Yevgeny Mravinsky conducting the Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra in the Large Hall of the Leningrad Conservatory. The first recording was made in two days following the premiere by Rostropovich and the Moscow Philharmonic, under the baton of Aleksandr Gauk.

Mstislav Rostropovich, one of the greatest 20th-century cellists, studied composition with Dmitri Shostakovich. Their mutual respect soon grew into a close friendship and in 1959 Shostakovich dedicated his Cello Concerto No.1 to Rostropovich, thus making the cellist's long-time wish come true. Rostropovich learned the piece within a mere four days and duly played it by heart to the astonished composer. Two days after the premiere (4 October 1959 in Leningrad), Rostropovich performed the work in Moscow to an enthusiastic audience response. In 1960, the celebrated cellist and the Czech Philharmonic, under Kirill Kondrashin, presented the piece at the Prague Spring Festival.



ROSTROPOVICH plays SHOSTAKOVICH

Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975)

♪ Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major, Op.107 (1959)

i. Allegretto
ii. Moderato
iii. Cadenza – Attacca
iv. Allegro con moto

Mstislav Rostropovich, cello

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Kirill Kondrashin

Recorded live at the Prague Spring International Music Festival at the Smetana Hall of the Municipal House, Prague, on May 29, 1960.

Mono

Supraphon Archiv 2013

(HD 1080p – Audio video)
























See also

Symphonies

Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.7 in C major "Leningrad" – hr-Sinfonieorchester, Marin Alsop (HD 1080p)


George Gershwin: Piano Concerto in F major | Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.5 in D minor – Yuja Wang, London Symphony Orchestra, Michael Tilson Thomas


Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.5 in D minor – BBC Symphony Orchestra, Edward Gardner


Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.13 in B flat minor "Babi Yar" – Sergei Aleksashkin, Groot Omroepmannenkoor, Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Dima Slobodeniouk


Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.4 in C minor – Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, David Afkham


Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.14 in G minor – Makvala Kasrashvili, Evgeny Nesterenco, Moscow Chamber Orchestra, Rudolf Barshai (Audio video)



Concertos


Dmitri Shostakovich: Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor – Nicola Benedetti, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, Thomas Søndergård (HD 1080p)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major – Alexander Warenberg, Symphony Orchestra of the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, Judith Kubitz


Dmitri Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major, & Symphony No.1 in F minor | Benjamin Britten: Sinfonietta, Op.1 – Steven Isserlis, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Teodor Currentzis (HD 1080p)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No.2 in G major – Mstislav Rostropovich, Prague Symphony Orchestra, Yevgeny Svetlanov (World premiere recording, Prague, December 6, 1967 – Audio video)

Dmitri Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No.1 in E flat major – Mstislav Rostropovich, Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, Aleksandr Gauk (World premiere recording, Moscow, October 6, 1959 – Audio video)

Dmitri Shostakovich: Piano Concerto No.1 in C minor – Martha Argerich, David Guerrier, Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra, Gábor Takács-Nagy

Dmitri Shostakovich plays the end of his First Piano Concerto (1940)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Piano Concerto No.2 in F major – Dmitri Shostakovich, Orchestre National de France, André Cluytens (Audio video)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and Strings in C minor – Dmitri Shostakovich, Orchestre National de France, André Cluytens (Audio video)



Chamber Music

Dmitri Shostakovich: Piano Trio No.2 in E minor – Delta Piano Trio (HD 1080p)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Piano Trio No.1 in C minor – Janine Jansen, Torleif Thedéen, Eldar Nebolsin



Piano Works

Dmitri Shostakovich: 3 Fantastic Dances, 5 Preludes & Fugues – Dmitri Shostakovich (Audio video)



Song Cycles

Dmitri Shostakovich: Song-cycle: From Jewish Folk Poetry – Tatiana Sharova, Ludmila Kuznetsova, Alexei Martynov, Russian State Symphony Orchestra, Valeri Polyansky (Audio video)


Movies

Shostakovich Against Stalin: The War Symphonies – A Documentary by Larry Weinstein – Netherland Radio Philharmonic, Kirov Orchestra, Valery Gergiev (HD 1080p)


Dmitri Shostakovich: Katerina Izmailova (Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk), 1966 – A film by Mikhail Shapiro – Galina Vishnevskaya, Konstantin Simeonov


The New Babylon (Novyy Vavilon), 1929 – A film by Grigori Kozintsev & Leonid Trauberg – Music by Dmitri Shostakovich (HD 1080p)


Film Music

Dmitri Shostakovich: Film music from New Babylon – Russian State Symphony Orchestra, Valeri Polyansky (Audio video)


Texts (in Greek)

Μουσική υπό διωγμό: οι πολιτικές διώξεις του Ντμίτρι Σοστακόβιτς

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Im Keller / In the Basement (2014) – A film by Ulrich Seidl (Trailer)

Corpulent sex slaves, tuba-playing Nazi obsessives, reborn doll fantasists – just a regular stroll through the neighborhood, then, for patented guru of the grotesque Ulrich Seidl, who makes an intriguing return to documentary filmmaking with "In the Basement". Grabby and grubby in equal measure, this meticulously composed trawl through the contents of several middle-class Austrians' cellars (a space, according to Seidl, that his countrymen traditionally give over to their most personal hobbies) yields more than a few startling discoveries. It's not hard to tell, though, that a mixture of fact and fabrication is at work here. The career-high success of Seidl's recent "Paradise" trilogy should boost the distribution prospects of a niche item that is by turns uproarious, repulsive and oddly touching. [...] Working for the first time with the brilliant cinematographer Martin Gschlacht – best known for his similarly geometric work with fellow Austrian Jessica Hausner – Seidl has found an ideal creative enabler for his vision. The carefully calibrated gloom of Gschlacht's lighting schemes (all the better to accentuate the frequently bilious colors of the decor) and the sharpness of his seemingly tweezer-set framing often suggests more about these "characters" than they are willing to say about themselves. Christopher Brunner's editing is equally crisp and incisive, and while no production designer is credited, Seidl has apparently chosen subjects who share his eccentric taste in interiors. Even a wall cluttered with African mementoes and macabre taxidermy trophies manages, through Seidl's gaze, to look strangely austere.

The film aimed for the adult audience.


Watch the trailer



Im Keller / In the Basement (2014)

A film by Ulrich Seidl

Directed by Ulrich Seidl
Idea & concept: Ulrich Seidl, Veronika Franz
Camera: Martin Gschlacht
Editor: Christopher Brunner
Sound: Ekkehart Baumung
Line producer: Konstantin Seitz
Assistant directors: Daniel Hoesl, Astrid Wolfrig

With Fritz Lang, Alfreda Klebinger, Manfred Ellinger, Inge Ellinger, Josef Ochs, Alessa Duchek, Gerald Duchek, Cora Kitty, Peter Vokurek, Walter Holzer

Production: Austria - Germany, 2014

Spoken language: German
With English, French, Greek, Spanish & Portugese subtitles
















Watch the movie

Im Keller / In the Basement (2014) – A film by Ulrich Seidl (HD 1080p)

Friday, June 16, 2017

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Andante and Variations in G major, Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in C major, Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in F major – Guillaume Bellom & Ismaël Margain (Audio video)






















Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was one of the first to compose pieces for piano four hands. His father, Leopold, wrote in a letter of 9 July 1765: "In London Wolfgangerl wrote his first piece for four hands. Until that time no sonata for four hands had ever been composed".

The famous Salzburg family portrait painted by Johann Nepomuk della Croce in 1780-1781 (Mozarteum, Salzburg) shows Wolfgang and his sister, Nannerl, playing a duet at the piano, with Leopold, violin in hand, looking on, and his wife, Anna Maria (d. 1778), included in a picture on the wall.

The three works presented here were composed in Vienna in 1786 and 1787, when the young virtuoso was about to give up his career as a pianist in order to concentrate on the composition of operas, having been stimulated by his meeting with the librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte. In the summer of 1786 he composed what is probably the most ambitious and most significant of his four-hand pieces, the Sonata in F major (K.497). It was first performed in Vienna on 4 November 1786, four months before the Andante and Variations in G major (K.501). His last Sonata for piano four hands, in C major, K.521, was written in May 1787, when Mozart had reached his full maturity as a composer. It is characterised by the light key of C major and the virtuosity of its two fast movements (especially the first), bright and brilliant in their elegance.



Γεννημένοι και οι δύο το 1992, οι ταλαντούχοι και βραβευμένοι Γάλλοι πιανίστες Guillaume Bellom και Ismaël Margain ερμηνεύουν, με την απαιτούμενη μεταξύ τους οικειότητα, τρία από τα πιο διάσημα έργα για πιάνο για 4 χέρια του Βόλφγκανγκ Αμαντέους Μότσαρτ, μεταδίδοντας με τον πιο άμεσο τρόπο στον ακροατή τη δική τους μουσική απόλαυση.



Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

♪ Andante and Variations in G major, K.501 (1786)


♪ Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in C major, K.521 (1787)

i. Allegro
ii. Andante
iii. Allegretto


♪ Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in F major, K.497 (1786)

i. Adagio – Allegro di molto
ii. Andante
iii. Allegro

Guillaume Bellom & Ismaël Margain, piano

Bourges, Théâtre Saint-Bonnet, July 6-9, 2013

Aparté 2013

(HD 1080p – Audio video)























Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was one of the first to compose pieces for piano four hands. His father, Leopold, wrote in a letter of 9 July 1765: "In London Wolfgangerl wrote his first piece for four hands. Until that time no sonata for four hands had ever been composed". The famous Salzburg family portrait painted by Johann Nepomuk della Croce in 1780-1781 (Mozarteum, Salzburg) shows Wolfgang and his sister, Nannerl, playing a duet at the piano, with Leopold, violin in hand, looking on, and his wife, Anna Maria (d. 1778), included in a picture on the wall.

In his youth Mozart wrote several pieces for piano four hands but gave up the genre when he no longer had his sister at hand, only returning to it much later. Shortly after he moved to Vienna (1781), Artaria published a volume containing two Salzburg Sonatas (K.381 and K.358). The few pieces he wrote after that, for his own use or that of his pupils, were published straight away. His works for piano four hands comprise six sonatas, one of them unfinished, an Andante with Variations (K.501) and a Fugue (K.401), plus transcriptions and arrangements. The many reprints they had in Germany, France and England show the popularity of these works.

The three works presented here were composed in Vienna in 1786 and 1787, when the young virtuoso was about to give up his career as a pianist in order to concentrate on the composition of operas, having been stimulated by his meeting with the librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte. In the summer of 1786 he composed what is probably the most ambitious and most significant of his four-hand pieces, the Sonata in F major (K.497). Written four months after Le Nozze di Figaro, it was first performed in Vienna on 4 November 1786, four months before the Andante and Variations in G major (K.501). His last Sonata for piano four hands, in C major, K.521, was written in May 1787 (six months before Don Giovanni), when Mozart had reached his full maturity as a composer. It is characterised by the light key of C major and the virtuosity of its two fast movements (especially the first one), bright and brilliant in their elegance. Mozart originally wrote this Sonata for Francisca von Jaquin, but later dedicated it to Nanette and Babette Natorp, daughters of a rich Viennese merchant.

Source: CD Booklet


Guillaume Bellom (b. 1992) studied piano and violin from the age of six at the Besançon Conservatoire (CRR), where in 2008 he was awarded prizes for piano, violin and chamber music.

In 2009, he was unanimously admit ted to the Par is Conservatoire (CNSM), where he joined the piano class of Nicholas Angelich and Romano Pallottini. He also studied under Franck Braley, Marie-François Bucquet, Dominique Merlet, Dany Rouet, Denis Pascal, Leon Fleisher and Jean-Claude Pennetier. He is currently furthering his studies with Hortense Cartier-Bresson.

In 2011 he also joined the violin class of Roland Daugareil, Suzanne Gessner and Christophe Poiget at the Paris Conservatoire (CNSM).

Guillaume Bellom was winner of the piano prize in the Besançon "Jeunes Musiciens" competition in 2008, following which he performed the Grieg Piano Concerto and the First Piano Concerto of Brahms with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Besançon.

He is often heard on radio (France Musique, in programmes presented by Phillipe Cassard and Arièle Butaux), and he performs regularly at the Fondation Singer-Polignac in Paris, where he has been artist in residence since 2012.

His interest in chamber music has led to appearances at festivals including those of Deauville (Festival de Pâques and Août Musical). He also plays sonatas with his brother, the cellist Adrien Bellom (Chambéry Bel-Air Claviers Festival, "Printemps des Alizés" in Essaouira, Morocco, etc.). Recently, with Amaury Coeytaux (violin) and Victor Julien-Laferrière (cello), he gave the first performance of Danse encore, a trio by the composer and pianist Jean-Frédéric Neuburger, at the Chapelle du Méjan in Arles.

In 2014, Guillaume performed in the Animal Carnival by Saint-Saens at the Champs-Elysées concert hall in Paris, and won a prize at the Rhine Gold Foundation. In 2015, he won the first prize at the international piano competition of Epinal, France. In 2016, he won the first prize of the Thierry Scherz competition in Gstaad, Switzerland. His first solo album, featuring pieces by Schubert, Haydn and Debussy, was released in early 2017. His great interest in chamber music, shared with his friend Ismaël Margain, lead them into joining various ensembles such as those performing at the Deauville Festival of Music. They play piano four-hands together and have recorded two discs dedicated to Mozart and Shubert under the label Aparte/Harmonia Mundi.


Ismaël Margain was born in 1992 in Sarlat (Dordogne), where he began his musical training (piano, flute, saxophone, jazz, composition, etc.). The pianist and conductor Vahan Mardirossian, with whom he worked from the age of eight, presented him to his own teacher, Jacques Rouvier, who coached him for entrance to the Paris Conservatoire (CNSM). Received unanimously, he entered Nicholas Angelich's class, then that of Roger Muraro.

After winning his first competition at the age of seven at "Les Musicales de Caen", Ismaël Margain went on to reap other awards, and in 2011 he won the "Génération SPEDIDAM" International Competition in Aix-en-Provence, receiving his diploma from Aldo Ciccolini, chairman of the jury, following his performance, in the final, of Beethoven's Fourth Piano Concerto, conducted by George Pehlivanian. The latter immediately invited the young pianist to play Ravel's Piano Concerto in G major under his baton at the Le Touquet International Music Masters 2012. Ismaël came to the notice of the general public in December 2012, when he played Mozart's Piano Concerto No.23 with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France on stage at the Opéra Comique in Paris in the final of the Long-Thibaud Competition, in which he won Third Prize and also the Public Prize.

In 2011 Limoges Opéra asked him to put together a programme in tribute both to Franz Liszt, for the bicentenary of his birth, and to one of his favourite composers, Franz Schubert. Ismaël was then invited to take part in various festivals, including those of Deauville, Albi ("Tons voisins"), Prades (Pablo Casals), Paris (Chopin), Toulouse (Piano aux Jacobins), Caracas (European Soloists) and the Ruhr Piano Festival in Germany. He has also been heard in recital at the Palais de l'Athénée in Geneva.

Ismaël Margain was awarded a bursary by the Clos de Vougeot Music Festival 2012 (Côte d'Or, Burgundy) and formed an ensemble for the occasion with soloists from the Metropolitan Opera, New York. He performs regularly at the Fondation Singer-Polignac in Paris, where he has been artist in residence since 2012.

His first solo album, dedicated to Schubert, was released in early 2017. His great interest in chamber music, shared with his friend Guillaume Bellom, lead them into joining various ensembles such as those performing at the Deauville Festival of Music. They play piano four-hands together and have recorded two discs, dedicated to Mozart and Shubert, under the label Aparte/Harmonia Mundi.
























See also

Franz Schubert: Fantasia in F minor, Allegro in A minor "Lebensstürme", Sonata in C major "Grand Duo" – Ismaël Margain & Guillaume Bellom (Audio video)

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.6 in F major "Pastoral" – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)














Christian Thielemann, one of the most recognized conductors of our time, joins forces with the prestigious Wiener Philharmoniker and Unitel Classica, the world's leading audiovisual production company for classical music, in a monumental project: BEETHOVEN 9, the recording of all nine symphonies by Ludwig van Beethoven for TV, DVD and New Media: the "Beethoven cycle of the 21st century"!

Using the newest technology of our century, Unitel Classica and Austrian Television (ORF) produce this "super-cycle" in the Golden Hall of Vienna's Musikverein in HD and 5.0 Surround Sound. BEETHOVEN 9 kicked off in December 2008 with the recording of the First and Second Symphonies.

BEETHOVEN 9 brings to a new climax the longstanding collaboration between Thielemann, who enjoys a sterling reputation as an interpreter of Beethoven and the German Romantics, and the Wiener Philharmoniker, which has been cultivating the music of Beethoven since its founding nearly 170 years ago and is one of the few great orchestras to have preserved its unique sound. Unitel Classica can look back on more than 40 years of collaboration with the Wiener Philharmoniker and on its pioneering cycles of Beethoven's symphonic works with Herbert von Karajan and Leonard Bernstein.



Ο Κρίστιαν Τίλεμαν, ένας μαέστρος που δεν φοβάται να χαρακτηριστεί παραδοσιακός ή και ρομαντικός, καταθέτει το προσωπικό του όραμα για τον Μπετόβεν, σεβόμενος παράλληλα την ερμηνευτική παράδοση που καλλιεργείται στη Βιένη τα τελευταία 160 χρόνια και την οποία η γενιά της λεγόμενης «ιστορικής ερμηνείας» έχει θέσει υπό αμφισβήτηση.

Ο Μπετόβεν έγραψε την Έκτη («Ποιμενική») Συμφωνία του για να υμνήσει την εξοχή, εμπνεόμενος από το Χάιλιγκενσταντ, το επαρχιακό καταφύγιό του κοντά στη Βιένη. Εγκαταστάθηκε εκεί μετά από σύσταση ενός από τους γιατρούς του, με την ελπίδα ότι αυτό θα βελτίωνε την ακοή του. Η χαρά, που αρχικά ένιωσε μέσα στο φυσικό περιβάλλον, δεν άργησε να υποχωρήσει μπροστά στην απόγνωσή του όταν συνειδητοποίησε ότι η ακοή του δεν θα βελτιωνόταν.

Η Έκτη Συμφωνία δεν είναι τόσο δραματική ή μεγαλειώδης όσο η Πέμπτη, αλλά από πολλές απόψεις είναι εξίσου επαναστατική. Ο Μπετόβεν άνοιξε νέους δρόμους συνθέτοντας πέντε μέρη αντί για τα παραδοσιακά τέσσερα και ενώνοντας τα τελευταία τρία μέρη, τα οποία εκτελούνται χωρίς διακοπή. Πλημμυρισμένη από δυνατά και κάποιες φορές αντικρουόμενα συναισθήματα, είναι επίσης η πρώτη αμιγώς «προγραμματική» Συμφωνία, όπου η μουσική περιγράφει μια σειρά σκηνών ή συμβάντων. Στην περίπτωση αυτή είναι η εξοχή από όπου η Συμφωνία πήρε και το όνομά της.



CHRISTIAN THIELEMANN CONDUCTS LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

♪ Symphony No.6 in F major, Op. 68 "Pastoral" (1808)

i. Allegro ma non troppo (Awakening of happy feelings on arriving in the country)
ii. Andante molto moto (Scene by the Brook)
iii. Allegro (Peasant's merrymaking)
iv. Allegro (The storm)
v. Allegretto (Shepherds' song. Joyous thanksgiving after the storm)

Wiener Philharmoniker
Conductor: Christian Thielemann

Wiener Musikverein, April 2010

(HD 1080p)

Uploaded on Youtube for the Blog "Faces of Classical Music"


For roughly 175 years, the music appreciation racket has told us that Beethoven composed symphonies in contrasting odd-even pairs after 1803, none more startling than the heaven-storming Fifth and bucolic Sixth. Originally, however, he assigned the designation of "No.5" to the Pastoral for their shared debut on surely the most historic night in Western music, December 22, 1808. Beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the unheated Theater an der Wien, he premiered both symphonies, the Fourth Piano Concerto, "Choral" Fantasy, "Ah! perfido!" (a concert aria from 1796), and introduced a Viennese audience to excerpts from the C major Mass, an Esterházy commission of 1807 that Prince Nicolaus II disliked when he heard it.

Beethoven began making specific notes for a "Sinfonia pastorale" in 1806, but didn't complete the work until 1808, in the village of Heiligenstadt northwest of Vienna. If this had been an unlikely hatchery in 1807 for the fist-brandishing Fifth Symphony, it perfectly suited – as he noted in his sketchbook – "recollections of country life... more the expression of feeling than of painting" in his ensuing woodwind-drenched symphony (although violins get first crack at nine of its 12 significant themes).

"Cheerful impressions wakened by arrival in the country" (Allegro ma non troppo, in F major, 2/4) is the first movement. It is in sonata form, pretty much by the book, with violins introducing all themes. The second-movement "Scene by the brook" (Andante molto moto, in B flat major and 12/8 time) is a Sonata structure again, but more relaxed, with a limpid main theme for violins and a bassoon sub-theme. In the coda, the flute impersonates a nightingale, the oboe a quail, and the clarinet a cuckoo. The third movement, "Merry gathering of country folk" (Allegro, 3/4 time, F major), is an expanded song-and-trio, with a 2/4 section in "tempo d'Allegro" that creates the effect of an ABCABCA structure, leading without pause to the fourth movement, "Thunderstorm; tempest" (Allegro; F minor, 4/4). From the first raindrop to last, this is purely depictive music. It is followed by a 10-bar chorale that segues the final "Shepherd's song; glad and grateful tidings after the storm" (Allegretto; F major, 6/8), a sonata-rondo, whose C-section some have called a development section. The fun includes a sly parody of amateur musicians before the long, progressively tranquil coda that ends with a pianistic gesture: two fortissimo chords.

Source: Roger Dettmer (allmusic.com)













See also

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.5 in C minor – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.3 in E flat major "Eroica" – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.2 in D major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.1 in C major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Staatskapelle Dresden. New Year's Eve Concert 2015 – Lang Lang, Rinat Shaham, Lucas Meachem, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Richard Strauss: Four Last Songs & Alpine Symphony – Anja Harteros, Staatskapelle Dresden, Christian Thielemann


Wagner Birthday Gala – Jonas Kaufmann, Staatskapelle Dresden, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.5 in C minor – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)














Christian Thielemann, one of the most recognized conductors of our time, joins forces with the prestigious Wiener Philharmoniker and Unitel Classica, the world's leading audiovisual production company for classical music, in a monumental project: BEETHOVEN 9, the recording of all nine symphonies by Ludwig van Beethoven for TV, DVD and New Media: the "Beethoven cycle of the 21st century"!

Using the newest technology of our century, Unitel Classica and Austrian Television (ORF) produce this "super-cycle" in the Golden Hall of Vienna's Musikverein in HD and 5.0 Surround Sound. BEETHOVEN 9 kicked off in December 2008 with the recording of the First and Second Symphonies.

BEETHOVEN 9 brings to a new climax the longstanding collaboration between Thielemann, who enjoys a sterling reputation as an interpreter of Beethoven and the German Romantics, and the Wiener Philharmoniker, which has been cultivating the music of Beethoven since its founding nearly 170 years ago and is one of the few great orchestras to have preserved its unique sound. Unitel Classica can look back on more than 40 years of collaboration with the Wiener Philharmoniker and on its pioneering cycles of Beethoven's symphonic works with Herbert von Karajan and Leonard Bernstein.



Ο Κρίστιαν Τίλεμαν, ένας μαέστρος που δεν φοβάται να χαρακτηριστεί παραδοσιακός ή και ρομαντικός, καταθέτει το προσωπικό του όραμα για τον Μπετόβεν, σεβόμενος παράλληλα την ερμηνευτική παράδοση που καλλιεργείται στη Βιένη τα τελευταία 160 χρόνια και την οποία η γενιά της λεγόμενης «ιστορικής ερμηνείας» έχει θέσει υπό αμφισβήτηση.

Ο Λούντβιχ βαν Μπετόβεν άρχισε να σχεδιάζει τη Συμφωνία αρ. 5 το 1803, κατόπιν παραγγελίας του κόμη της Άνω Σιλεσίας, Φραντς φον Όπερσντορφ, αλλά την αφιέρωσε στους χορηγούς του, πρίγκιπα Φραντς Γιόζεφ φον Λόμπκοβιτς και κόμη Αντρέι Ραζουμόφσκι. Το μεγαλύτερο μέρος της γράφτηκε το 1807 και ολοκληρώθηκε στις αρχές του 1808. Πρόκειται για ένα από τα δημοφιλέστερα μουσικά έργα του κλασικού ρεπερτορίου και ίσως το πιο γνωστό του Γερμανού συνθέτη. Ο Άγγλος συγγραφέας Ε. Μ. Φόρστερ έγραψε ότι είναι «ο πιο σαγηνευτικός ήχος που εισχώρησε ποτέ στην ακοή του ανθρώπου».

Ήταν μια εποχή που η κυριαρχία της ναπολεόντειας Γαλλίας βρισκόταν στο απόγειό της, σε αντίθεση με την Αυστρία που έχασε όλες τις κρίσιμες μάχες με σημαντικές απώλειες εδαφών. Ο Μπετόβεν, έχοντας δημοκρατικά φρονήματα, έτρεφε συμπάθεια για τη Γαλλία και τον Ναπολέοντα, έως το 1804, που ο Γάλλος στρατηγός αναγορεύθηκε σε Αυτοκράτορα. Σε προσωπικό επίπεδο, ο μεγάλος μουσουργός βίωνε μαρτυρικά τη σταδιακή απώλεια της ακοής του.

Η πρεμιέρα του έργου δόθηκε στο Θέατρο της Βιένης στις 22 Δεκεμβρίου 1808 με τον Μπετόβεν στο πόντιουμ. Ήταν μια συναυλία-μαμούθ, διάρκειας τεσσάρων ωρών, με έργα του συνθέτη. Εκτός από την Πέμπτη, παρουσιάστηκαν η Συμφωνία αρ. 6, το Κοντσέρτο για πιάνο και ορχήστρα αρ. 4, η Χορωδιακή Φαντασία για πιάνο, χορωδία και ορχήστρα, και μέρος από τη Λειτουργία σε Ντο μείζονα. Η υποδοχή του έργου από το κοινό ήταν χλιαρή και οφειλόταν στις αντίξοες συνθήκες με τις οποίες πραγματοποιήθηκε η συναυλία. Η ορχήστρα με μόνο μία πρόβα έκανε πολλά λάθη, ενώ η αίθουσα ήταν παγωμένη και το ακροατήριο εξουθενωμένο από τη μεγάλη διάρκεια της συναυλίας. Όμως, ένα χρόνο αργότερα, η Πέμπτη έγινε δεκτή με ενθουσιασμό από το κοινό της Βιένης και συνοδεύτηκε από μία αποθεωτική κριτική του συνθέτη και συγγραφέα Ε.Τ.Α. Χόφμαν στη Γενική Μουσική Εφημερίδα.

Η Πέμπτη είναι γραμμένη για 1 πίκολο, 2 φλάουτα, 2 όμποε, 2 κλαρινέτα, 2 φαγκότα, 1 κοντραφαγκότο, 2 κόρνα, 2 τρομπέτες, 3 τρομπόνια, τύμπανα και ορχήστρα εγχόρδων. Το αρχικό δραματικό μοτίβο με τις τέσσερεις νότες (τρεις σύντομες και μία μεγάλη), είναι το πιο αναγνωρίσιμο στην Ιστορία της Μουσικής. Για κάποιους ακροατές αντιπροσωπεύει είτε τη μοίρα («Έτσι χτυπά η μοίρα την πόρτα», έλεγε ο Μπετόβεν στον γραμματέα του, Άντον Σίντλερ), είτε την πάλη του καλλιτέχνη με τον εχθρικό κόσμο, ή τη νίκη (στη διάρκεια του Β' Παγκοσμίου Πολέμου χρησιμοποιήθηκε ως σύμβολο της νίκης των Συμμάχων). Κυριαρχεί σε ολόκληρο το πρώτο μέρος και αποτελεί τον συνδετικό κρίκο με το λυρικό δεύτερο μέρος, με το μυστηριακό τρίτο και το θριαμβικό φινάλε.

Η Συμφωνία αρ. 5 του Μπετόβεν άνοιξε νέους δρόμους στη μουσική και επηρέασε σπουδαίους συνθέτες, όπως ο Μπραμς, ο Τσαϊκόφσκι, ο Μπρούκνερ, ο Μάλερ και ο Μπερλιόζ. Μαζί με την Τρίτη και την Ένατη Συμφωνία αποτελούν τις πιο επαναστατικές συνθέσεις του Μπετόβεν.

Πηγή: sansimera.gr



CHRISTIAN THIELEMANN CONDUCTS LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

♪ Symphony No.5 in C minor, Op.67 (1807-1808)

i. Allegro con brio
ii. Andante con moto
iii. Scherzo: Allegro
iv. Allegro

Wiener Philharmoniker
Conductor: Christian Thielemann

Wiener Musikverein, April 2010

(HD 1080p)

Uploaded on Youtube for the Blog "Faces of Classical Music"


Beethoven worked on the Fifth Symphony for more than four years, completing it in 1808, and introducing it on December 22 of that year at what must have been one of the most extraordinary concerts in history. The marathon program included the Fifth and Sixth Symphonies; the Choral Fantasy, Op.80; the Fourth Piano Concerto; and parts of the Mass in C. Vienna was in the grip of exceptionally cold weather, the hall was unheated, and the musicians woefully under-prepared. As Schindler noted, "the reception accorded to these works was not as desired, and probably no better than the author himself had expected. The public was not endowed with the necessary degree of comprehension for such extraordinary music, and the performance left a great deal to be desired".

Following early indifference, the public only gradually began to come to terms with the Fifth. One of its earliest proponents, the poet and composer E.T.A. Hoffmann wrote, "How this magnificent composition carries the listener on and on in a continually ascending climax into the ghostly world of infinity!... the human breast, squeezed by monstrous presentiments and destructive powers, seems to gasp for breath; soon a kindly figure approaches full of radiance, and illuminates the depths of terrifying night". In his Howard's End, E.M. Forster writes of the work, suggesting that it satisfies "all sort and conditions". The characters of Helen and Tibby know the work well, the latter even describing "the transitional passage on the drum" before the finale. That Forster dwelt at such length on the work shows the extent to which it had become absorbed into the Romantic consciousness.

Hermann Kretzschmar wrote of the "stirring dogged and desperate struggle" of the first movement, one of the most concentrated of all Beethoven's symphonic sonata movements. It is derived almost exclusively from the rhythmic cell of the opening, which is even felt in the accompaniment of the second subject group. There follows a variation movement in which cellos introduce the theme, increasingly elaborated and with shorter note values at every reappearance. A second, hymn-like motif is heard as its counterfoil.

The tripartite scherzo follows; the main idea is based on an ominous arpeggio figure, but we hear also the omnipresent "Fate" rhythm, exactly as it is experienced in the first movement. The central section, which replaces the customary trio, is a pounding fugato beginning in the cellos and basses, and then running through the rest of the orchestra. Of particular structural interest is the inter-linking bridge passage which connects the last two movements. Over the drumbeat referred to by Forster's Tibby, the music climbs inexorably toward the tremendous assertion of C major triumph at the start of the finale. The epic grandeur of the music, now with martial trombones and piccolo added (the Fifth also calls for contrabassoon), has irresistible drive and sweep, though that eventual victory is still some way off is suggested by the return of the ominous scherzo figure during the extended development.

Source: Michael Jameson (music.com)













See also

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.6 in F major "Pastoral" – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.3 in E flat major "Eroica" – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.2 in D major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.1 in C major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Staatskapelle Dresden. New Year's Eve Concert 2015 – Lang Lang, Rinat Shaham, Lucas Meachem, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Richard Strauss: Four Last Songs & Alpine Symphony – Anja Harteros, Staatskapelle Dresden, Christian Thielemann


Wagner Birthday Gala – Jonas Kaufmann, Staatskapelle Dresden, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Franz Schubert: Fantasia in F minor, Allegro in A minor "Lebensstürme", Sonata in C major "Grand Duo" – Ismaël Margain & Guillaume Bellom (Audio video)






















"Friendship and complicity" could have been the title of this recording, made by two fine young musicians, both aged only 20.

Ismaël Margain (prize-winner in the Long-Thibaud competition 2012) and Guillaume Bellom (piano prize, Besançon Young Musicians competition 2008) illustrate the intimacy and the close sharing of musical pleasure that are major features of Schubert's piano duets. The composer produced thirty-two original compositions for piano four hands that include some of the finest ever written, among which are the three masterpieces presented here: highly Romantic, almost symphonic works, with stormy episodes and poignant melodies of which melancholy is a dominant feature.

Revealed by the Deauville Festival and the Polignac Foundation, this talented young duo, with its rare, and heart-warming, complicity, will undoubtedly go far.

(2013)



Γεννημένοι και οι δύο το 1992, οι ταλαντούχοι και βραβευμένοι Γάλλοι πιανίστες Ismaël Margain και Guillaume Bellom ερμηνεύουν, με την απαιτούμενη μεταξύ τους οικειότητα, τρία από τα πιο διάσημα έργα για πιάνο για 4 χέρια του Φραντς Σούμπερτ, μεταδίδοντας με τον πιο άμεσο τρόπο στον ακροατή τη δική τους μουσική απόλαυση.



Franz Schubert (1797-1828)

♪ Fantasia in F minor, D.940, Op. posth. 103 (1828)

♪ Allegro in A minor "Lebensstürme", D.947, Op. posth. 144 (1828)

♪ Sonata in C major "Grand Duo", D.812, Op. posth. 140 (1824)

i. Allegro moderato
ii. Andante
iii. Scherzo: allegro vivace
iv. Allegro vivace

Ismaël Margain & Guillaume Bellom, piano

Cortambert de la Fondation Singer-Polignac, July 2012

Aparté 2013

(HD 1080p – Audio video)























Franz Schubert is the author of some of the finest compositions ever written for piano duet (four hands at one keyboard), a genre that particularly appealed to him, like the lied, for its intimacy and the close sharing of musical pleasures that it represented. In all, he composed thirty-two original piano duets.

At the heart of his output for four hands are two "triptychs". The first one was written in the summer of 1824, during the composer's second stay on the Esterházy estate at Zseliz, then in Hungary (it is now Zeliezovce in Slovakia). Aged twenty-seven at that time, he was just emerging from a long period of depression and despair of ever achieving recognition as a composer in Vienna. The stay at Zseliz, taking him away from the capital for a while, afforded him an opportunity to recover his strength. He was engaged as music master to the two young daughters of Count Johann Esterházy, Caroline and Marie, both of whom were pianists, and he was expected to produce works suitable for the intimate setting of the family's summer residence; it is hardly surprising therefore that he composed piano duets there.

From that period dates one of Schubert's major piano works, the Sonata in C major "Grand Duo", D.812, Op. posth. 140, written in July 1824, a composition that has given rise to many theories, including the possibility that it is in fact a sketch for a lost symphony. That same summer he also wrote the eight Variations on an Original Theme in A flat major, D.813, Οp.35, and the Divertissement à la hongroise in G minor, D.818, Οp.54.

Four years later, Schubert composed his other great "triptych", comprising the famous Fantasia in F minor, D.940, Op. posth. 103, the Allegro in A minor "Lebensstürme", D.947, Op. posth. 144, and the Rondo in A major "Grand Rondo", D. 951, Οp.107. Written a few months before his death, these were his last works in the genre.

The title "Lebensstürme" (The storms of life) is not Schubert's; it was added later by Diabelli of Vienna, when he published the work in 1829, a year after the composer’s death. From the first chords in the extreme registers of the piano, the Allegro shows a turbulence that contrasts with the serenity of a second subject expressed in the manner of a distant chorale and leaving far behind any notion of storms.

The Fantasia in F minor is surely the finest piano duet that Schubert ever wrote, and possibly the finest that anyone has ever written. Composed between January and April 1828, it is dedicated to Caroline Esterházy, with whom Schubert had fallen in love several years previously; but with his penury and low social position he was obviously not a suitable match for a young aristocrat. How can we not see in this very poetic work the expression of private sentiments? The Fantasia was first performed by Schubert and Franz Lachner on 9 May 1828, at one of the famous Schubertiades.

Source: CD Booklet


Ismaël Margain was born in 1992 in Sarlat (Dordogne), where he began his musical training (piano, flute, saxophone, jazz, composition, etc.). The pianist and conductor Vahan Mardirossian, with whom he worked from the age of eight, presented him to his own teacher, Jacques Rouvier, who coached him for entrance to the Paris Conservatoire (CNSM). Received unanimously, he entered Nicholas Angelich's class, then that of Roger Muraro.

After winning his first competition at the age of seven at "Les Musicales de Caen", Ismaël Margain went on to reap other awards, and in 2011 he won the "Génération SPEDIDAM" International Competition in Aix-en-Provence, receiving his diploma from Aldo Ciccolini, chairman of the jury, following his performance, in the final, of Beethoven's Fourth Piano Concerto, conducted by George Pehlivanian. The latter immediately invited the young pianist to play Ravel's Piano Concerto in G major under his baton at the Le Touquet International Music Masters 2012. Ismaël came to the notice of the general public in December 2012, when he played Mozart's Piano Concerto No.23 with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France on stage at the Opéra Comique in Paris in the final of the Long-Thibaud Competition, in which he won Third Prize and also the Public Prize.

In 2011 Limoges Opéra asked him to put together a programme in tribute both to Franz Liszt, for the bicentenary of his birth, and to one of his favourite composers, Franz Schubert. Ismaël was then invited to take part in various festivals, including those of Deauville, Albi ("Tons voisins"), Prades (Pablo Casals), Paris (Chopin), Toulouse (Piano aux Jacobins), Caracas (European Soloists) and the Ruhr Piano Festival in Germany. He has also been heard in recital at the Palais de l'Athénée in Geneva.

Ismaël Margain was awarded a bursary by the Clos de Vougeot Music Festival 2012 (Côte d'Or, Burgundy) and formed an ensemble for the occasion with soloists from the Metropolitan Opera, New York. He performs regularly at the Fondation Singer-Polignac in Paris, where he has been artist in residence since 2012.

His first solo album, dedicated to Schubert, was released in early 2017. His great interest in chamber music, shared with his friend Guillaume Bellom, lead them into joining various ensembles such as those performing at the Deauville Festival of Music. They play piano four-hands together and have recorded two discs, dedicated to Mozart and Shubert, under the label Aparte/Harmonia Mundi.


Guillaume Bellom (b. 1992) studied piano and violin from the age of six at the Besançon Conservatoire (CRR), where in 2008 he was awarded prizes for piano, violin and chamber music.

In 2009, he was unanimously admit ted to the Par is Conservatoire (CNSM), where he joined the piano class of Nicholas Angelich and Romano Pallottini. He also studied under Franck Braley, Marie-François Bucquet, Dominique Merlet, Dany Rouet, Denis Pascal, Leon Fleisher and Jean-Claude Pennetier. He is currently furthering his studies with Hortense Cartier-Bresson.

In 2011 he also joined the violin class of Roland Daugareil, Suzanne Gessner and Christophe Poiget at the Paris Conservatoire (CNSM).

Guillaume Bellom was winner of the piano prize in the Besançon "Jeunes Musiciens" competition in 2008, following which he performed the Grieg Piano Concerto and the First Piano Concerto of Brahms with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Besançon.

He is often heard on radio (France Musique, in programmes presented by Phillipe Cassard and Arièle Butaux), and he performs regularly at the Fondation Singer-Polignac in Paris, where he has been artist in residence since 2012.

His interest in chamber music has led to appearances at festivals including those of Deauville (Festival de Pâques and Août Musical). He also plays sonatas with his brother, the cellist Adrien Bellom (Chambéry Bel-Air Claviers Festival, "Printemps des Alizés" in Essaouira, Morocco, etc.). Recently, with Amaury Coeytaux (violin) and Victor Julien-Laferrière (cello), he gave the first performance of Danse encore, a trio by the composer and pianist Jean-Frédéric Neuburger, at the Chapelle du Méjan in Arles.

In 2014, Guillaume performed in the Animal Carnival by Saint-Saens at the Champs-Elysées concert hall in Paris, and won a prize at the Rhine Gold Foundation. In 2015, he won the first prize at the international piano competition of Epinal, France. In 2016, he won the first prize of the Thierry Scherz competition in Gstaad, Switzerland. His first solo album, featuring pieces by Schubert, Haydn and Debussy, was released in early 2017. His great interest in chamber music, shared with his friend Ismaël Margain, lead them into joining various ensembles such as those performing at the Deauville Festival of Music. They play piano four-hands together and have recorded two discs dedicated to Mozart and Shubert under the label Aparte/Harmonia Mundi.
























See also

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Andante and Variations in G major, Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in C major, Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in F major – Guillaume Bellom & Ismaël Margain (Audio video)