ComposerNikolai Kapustin
DifficultyUK grade 9 (diploma level)
Instruments2 pianos
Printed sheet music
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Picture of Sheet music for 2 pianos 4 hands by Nikolai Kapustin

This one-movement concerto was composed in 1990. Structurally, it very much resembles a violin concerto by Alexander Glazounov. The similarity is that a slow lyrical episode is wedged between the exposition and the development, after which the recapitulation and the soloist's cadenza follow. But then, instead of the expected coda, there is a large concluding section (both in this concerto and in Glazounov's) which is perceived as a finale. This last section is written in sonata rondo form, which is also characteristic of a finale. In the middle of this section (in this concerto) one can hear music from the lyrical episode, but now in rondo tempo. In the main and concluding sections, thanks to the presence of the drums in the score for chamber orchestra, one can discern the well-nigh forgotten disco style. As for real jazz, there is remarkably little of it: only at cue 23 of the piano part and at cue 49 of the soloist's cadenza. Probably the hardest place in the solo part is at cues 64 and 65, and perhaps also the long concluding passage. As soon as Kapustin finished composing the concerto, he learned to play it for performance, but because of the well-known situation in Russia the early 90's he was not able either to perform or to record it. Only much later it was performed by the wonderful Bulgarian pianist Ludmil Angelov and a Spanish chamber orchestra.

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