Chopin: The Complete Nocturnes and Impromptus

The Complete Chopin Nocturnes and Impromptus


Hyperion Records CDA 67371/2

Angela Hewitt takes a well-deserved break from her mammoth Bach and Couperin surveys to present us with this enthralling set of Chopin’s complete Nocturnes and Impromptus, recorded on her own Fazioli concert grand piano.

“What we get in many of these riveting performances is deep, raw emotion, of a sometimes agonising immediacy, all the more painful for the almost impossible beauty and elegance of its expression.”
(Piano Magazine, UK)

Compact Disc 1 (68’40)

1. Nocturne in C sharp minor Op posth. (3’53)
2. Nocturne in C minor Op posth. (2’46)
3. Nocturne in B flat minor Op 9 No 1 (5’59)
4. Nocturne in E flat major Op 9 No 2 (4’34)
5. Nocturne in B major Op 9 No 3 (6’20)
6. Nocturne in F major Op 15 No 1 (4’47)
7. Nocturne in F sharp major Op 15 No 2 (3’32)
8. Nocturne in G minor Op 15 No 3 (3’34)
9. Nocturne in C sharp minor Op 27 No 1 (5’41)
10. Nocturne in D flat major Op 27 No 2 (6’05)
11. Nocturne in B major Op 32 No 1 (4’48)
12. Nocturne in A flat major Op 32 No 2 (5’21)
13. Nocturne in G minor Op 37 No 1 (6’18)
14. Nocturne in G major Op 37 No 2 (4’57)

Compact Disc 2 (64’13)

1. Nocturne in C minor Op 48 No 1 (7’16)
2. Nocturne in F sharp minor Op 48 No 2 (6’56)
3. Nocturne in F minor Op 55 No 1 (4’38)
4. Nocturne in E flat major Op 55 No 2 (4’57)
5. Nocturne in B major Op 62 No 1 (7’29)
6. Nocturne in E major Op 62 No 2 (6’09)
7. Nocturne in E minor Op 72 No 1 (4’54)
8. Impromptu No 1 in A flat major Op 29 (4’19)
9. Impromptu No 2 in F sharp major Op 36 (6’20)
10. Impromptu No 3 in G flat major Op 51 (5’48)
11. Fantaisie-Impromptu in C sharp minor Op 66 (5’22)

Nobody’s life has been romanticised more than Chopin’s, yet at heart he was a classicist and adored Bach and Mozart above all other composers. The sense of line. pulse, fluidity, and counterpoint that are trademarks of those composers are all present in these works by Chopin. The Nocturnes span Chopin’s entire creative life, giving us a marvellous opportunity to see not only how his early works were already totally inspired and original, but also how his style and emotional maturity developed through the years.

Available in multichannel hybrid SACD and conventional CD formats.

Recorded in the Reitstadel, Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz, Germany, on 16–20 November 2003

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Sleeve notes
‘One of the most elegant pianists around, the Canadian virtuoso Angela Hewitt interrupts her epic Bach and Couperin cycles for Hyperion to explore some of Chopin’s most refined music, the complete Nocturnes and Impromptus. Hewitt’s innate sophistication and delicacy of touch are perfectly suited to these exquisite pieces, 25 of them over two discs, by a master of the genre at the height of his fragile powers. Spanning almost his entire creative life, the Nocturnes amount to a remarkable graph of Chopin’s emotional maturity, touchingly reflected in the affectionate care Hewitt brings to what sounds like a labour of love’ (The Observer)
‘In a catalogue boasting many distinguished Chopin Nocturne cycles, Angela Hewitt’s commands attention’ (BBC Music Magazine)

Hewitt’s performances are every bit as fresh as one would expect from the pianist hailed as ‘one of the reliably mesmerising musicians of the day’, with ‘the ability to convey a spiritual seriousness that nonetheless does not exclude an utter charm’ (The Sunday Times).

Available audio excerpts from this recording

01-Nocturne in C# minor
02-Nocturne in C minor
03-Nocturne in Bb minor
04-Nocturne in Eb major
05-Nocturne in B major
06-Nocturne in F major
07-Nocturne in F# major
08-Nocturne in G minor
09-Nocturne in C# minor
10-Nocturne in Db major
11-Nocturne in B major
12-Nocturne in Ab major
13-Nocturne in G minor
14-Nocturne in G major
15-Nocturne in C minor
16-Nocturne in F# minor
17-Nocturne in F# minor
18-Nocturne in Eb major
19-Nocturne in E major
21-Nocturne in E minor
22-Impromptu No 1 in Ab major
23-Impromptu No 2 in F# major
24-Impromptu No 3 in Gb major
25-Fantaisie-Impromptu in C# minor
Chopin: Nocturne in E flat major Op 52 No 2 (4’57)
Chopin: Nocturne in G minor Op 37 No 1 (6’18)

Reviews of this record

Bayerischer Rundfunk / Attila Csampai / Chopin Nocturnes and Impromptus
Piano Magazine / Daniel Stearns / Chopin Nocturnes and Impromptus
The Observer / Anthony Holden / Chopin Nocturnes and Impromptus
Toronto Star / William Littler / Chopin Nocturnes and Impromptus