Louis Moreau Gottschalk (1829-1869)
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Piano Music for 2 and 4 Hands
Performers: Alan Marks, with Nerine Barrett
Label: Nimbu

Alan Marks was born in Chicago in 1949 and grew up in St. Louis (the place where Louis Moreau Gottschalk, at age seven, is said to have been invited to play the organ during mass at the Cathedral while one of his mentors had to work the pedals and stops, because Louis Moreau was still too small for that...). Marks studied with Irwin Freundlich at the Juilliard School in New York, and later with Benjamin Kaplan and Leon Fleisher at Peabody Conservatory, Baltimore. In 1980 he left the U.S. to settle down in Berlin. During the 1980s, Marks expanded his repertoire and was involved in many projects that attempted to bridge the gap between different genres. During that time, he prepared several recordings of Gottschalk´s music. After the reunification of Berlin, he took up a professorship at the Hanns Eisler College of Music in former East-Berlin, where he taught piano from 1992 until his early death in 1995.

Contents: CD1: Réponds moi (Danse Cubaine), 2. Printemps d´Amour (Mazurka, Caprice de Concert), 3. Marche de Nuit, 4. Ses Yeux (Célèbre Polka de Concert), 5. La Jota Aragonesa (Caprice Espagnol), 6. Le Bananier (Chanson nègre), 7. Ojos Criollos (Danse Cubaine, Caprice Brillante), 8. Orfa (Grande Polka), 9. La Scintilla (L´Étincelle, Mazurka), 10. Marche Funèbre, 11. La Gallina (Danse Cubaine), 12. Radieuse (Grande Valse de Concert), 13. Grande Tarantelle. CD2: 1. Souvenirs d´Andalousie (Caprice de Concert), 2. Le Banjo (Grotesque Fantasie, Caprice Américain), 3. Grand Scherzo, 4. Pasquinade, 5. Berceuse (Cradle Song), 6. Tournament Galop, 7. Mazurk, 8. Union, 9. The Last Hope, 10. Scherzo Romantique, 11. Le Mancenillier, 12. The Dying Poet.

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PIANO MUSIC - Louis Moreau Gottschalk

Works for Piano (Klavierwerke)
Performer: Klaus Kaufmann
Label: Koch Schwann/Musica Mundi

“...executed in a masterly fashion, lighthanded without lacking substance...”
H. Glossner in FonoForum 7/1990

Contents: 1. The Banjo, 2. Union, 3. Ricordati, 4. Pasquinade, 5. La Savane, 6. Scherzo Romantique, 7. Souvenir de Porto Rico, 8. La Gallina, 9. Ojos Criollos, 10. The Last Hope, 11. Le Bananier, 12. Bamboula.

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A Gottschalk Festival
Eugene List, Piano; Vienna State Opera Orchestra; Berlin Symphony Orchestra; Igor Buketoff & Samuel Adler, Conductors
Label: Essex

This 2-CD compilation of orchestral pieces along with five piano pieces for four hands, presents a fascinating cross-section of Gottschalk´s musical opus. His patriotic “Union - Concert Paraphrase on National Airs” contrasts nicely with the “Grande Fantaisie Triomphale sur L´Hymne National Brasilien” and the corresponding “Variations on the Portuguese National Hymn for Piano & Orchestra.” This is very much Gottschalk: His music can be patriotic, but at the same time the fact that he extends his nationalist enthusiasm to all nations -- American, Brazilian, Portuguese... -- renders him immune against accusations of chauvinism. While it may not come as a surprise to anyone familiar with Gottschalk´s music, his lack of “respect” for traditional forms and genres is, once again, breathtaking. Who else would dub a sequence of “Cuban Country Scenes”, its duration being less than 15 min, an “opera”? Or would sell a single 12-min piece for orchestra a “Symphony” (“Symphny No.2 - A Montevideo”).
This is a perfect introduction to Gottschalk (even though some of the recordings, especially that of “The Union” should have been carried out more carefully, and even though the printed list of contents is not entirely correct [N.B. the contents section as given on this website is correct]).

Contents: CD1: 1. Grande Tarantelle for Piano & Orchestra, 2. Symphony No.2 “A Montevideo”, 3. “The Union” Concert Paraphrase on National Airs, 4. Marche Solennelle; Five Pieces for Piano (four hands): 5. Radieuse, Grande valse de concert, 6. Ses Yeux, Polka de concert, 7. La Gallina, Danse cubaine, 8. Ojos Criollos, Danse cubaine, 9. Pasquinade, Caprice. CD2: 1. Grande Fantaisie Triomphale sur L´Hymne National Brasilien, 2. Marche Triunfal y Final de Opera (for orchestra & band), 3./4. Symphony No. 1 “La Nuit des Tropiques”, 5. Variations on the Portuguese National Hymn for Piano & Orchestra, 6. Escenas Campestres (Cuban Country Scenes), Opera.

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Alan Marks et al.: Gottschalk Piano Music for 2 and 4 hands
Klaus Kaufmann: L.M. Gottschalk Klavierwerke
Eugene List, Berlin Symphony Orchestra et al.: A Gottschalk Festival
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