Josef Hofmann - Great Pianists of the 20th Century
Free Shipping Included! Josef Hofmann - Great Pianists of the 20th Century by Philips at Your Free Album. Hurry! Limited time offer. Offer valid only while supplies last. Before he became the brilliant and charismatic virtuoso to whom Rachmaninov dedicated his Third Piano Concerto, Joseph Hofmann was a child prodigy. He was also the first pianist ever to make a record: in 1888, at age 12, he sat on Thomas Edison's lap and played into a prototype of the cylinder machine. That was a year after his New York debut at the old Metropolitan Opera house had caused general amazement among the public and the critics, but had also brought the wrath of the Society for the Pr
Product Description & Reviews
Before he became the brilliant and charismatic virtuoso to whom Rachmaninov dedicated his Third Piano Concerto, Joseph Hofmann was a child prodigy. He was also the first pianist ever to make a record: in 1888, at age 12, he sat on Thomas Edison's lap and played into a prototype of the cylinder machine. That was a year after his New York debut at the old Metropolitan Opera house had caused general amazement among the public and the critics, but had also brought the wrath of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children upon the heads of his promoters. A wealthy New Yorker put up $50,000 (the equivalent of at least half a million today) to see that young Hofmann was educated rather than exploited; he was sent off to study with Anton Rubinstein in Dresden, and made his adult debut in the U.S. at the acceptable age of 22. By then, he was a finished pianist, capable of producing cascades of notes with his small hands (Steinway built a grand with slightly narrower keys just for him) as well as extraordinary effects of color and delicacy. His virtuosity was all the more hair-raising for its elegance and seeming effortlessness. One gets a good idea of all that from this sampler of Romantic miniatures and encore pieces recorded between 1903 and 1923 (mainly 1916-23), in rather primitive but nonetheless revealing sound. Hofmann's unerring sense of line and pace are much in evidence, but so are his pronounced rubato and, in certain selections (like Rubinstein's Valse-caprice in E flat), more than a few slips and wrong notes--the price one paid for being engaged with the music and taking chances. --Ted Libbey
Features & Highlights
NR (Not Rated)
5.75 x 0.35 x 5 inches
4.97 x 0.54 x 5.55 inches
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