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#3217514 05/19/22 09:27 AM
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I was surprised to read in the thread about Chopin's Sonata #3 that there are 300 recordings of this piece. I don't know whether that means currently available or all the recordings going back to the dawn of recordings or where that poster got the 300 figure.

Does anyone know what piece has been recorded more than any other? My guess is this is not possible to know, but if that's the case, what your guess of the most recorded piece(by professionals)?

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I can't imagine this is the most recorded piece. I have to think one of the famous Beethoven sonatas or Chopin pieces. It's definitely not possible to know and it's also difficult to define "professional" nowadays since even amateurs can add their recordings to Spotify.


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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
......where that poster got the 300 figure.
I don't either smirk , but what I can say about BBC Radio 3's Record Review program is that reviewers, until about 15 years ago, used to talk about every recording (of the piece under discussion) currently available in the UK - i.e. CDs available to order from record shops, but not deleted ones.

Since then, of course, one can get long-deleted CDs (and LPs) quite easily, not to mention downloads of ancient recordings which have never been on CD, so reviewers have hundreds, if not thousands, of recordings to choose from, with popular pieces (popular classical, that is).

In fact, I'm sure there are far more recordings of Beethoven's 5th (symphony or Emperor, not the dog) than of Chopin's 3rd that have been recorded since, er, the age of recording.......


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I believe I said that. I just looked at the available CDs that you can order today. Now there are a number of duplicates as some recordings are also included in compilations and other cases like this. Some pianists recorded the same piece 2 or 3 times, which I count as separate versions. On the other hand it does not take into account old recordings that arent anymore officially on a catalog today nor all the various versions recorded during live concerts which are not commercially sold.

That said, I dont think there are stats that gives that sort of data. But surely the 5th or the 9th symphony have probably been recorded much more often. Other contender would be some of Beethoven most famous sonatas, like the moonlight.


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I am hoping some posters will give their guess about which piano pieces have been recorded the most. Here are a few of mine that are just guesses. I think they would also be on a list of most commonly appearing on recital programs.
Beethoven: Pathetique, Moonlight, Appassionata, Waldstein, Op. 109-111

Chopin: Preludes, Etudes, Sonata No.3, Nocturne Op. 48 No.1, many others so it's too hard to decide

Liszt:Sonata

Schubert: D. 360, Impromptus

Schumann: Fantasie, Kinderscenen, Kreisleriana

Ravel:Gaspard

Debussy: Preludes Book 1

Prokoviev: Sonatas 6-8

Bach-Busoni: Chaconne

Scriabin: Sonatas 3,4,5,9

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Schubert: D. 360,
Scriabin: Sonatas 3,4,5,9
I'd say definitely not these wink .

The Pathétique, Moonlight and Appassionata would easily top the list, because any pianist who plays Beethoven and has made records will have recorded them. And almost all pianists - even "Chopin pianists" - play Beethoven. (There was a time when you were either a Chopin pianist or a Beethoven pianist, and ne'er the twain shall meet......)

There are actually not many pianists who have recorded (or even played) Gaspard, despite its unfearsome reputation. I remember there was a Record Review program less than 20 years ago, in which all available recordings (then CD only, no downloads) were considered in the 45-minute program. The winner was a then-unknown Frenchman called Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, playing a period 1901 Steinway on an obscure German record label. I wonder what's happened to him since........


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Nominating Chopin Polonaise Op.53. Even "non-Chopinists" like Berman and Brendel recorded it.


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Originally Posted by bennevis
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Schubert: D. 360,
Scriabin: Sonatas 3,4,5,9
I'd say definitely not these wink .
I meant D. 960 which has around 140 CDs listed on Amazon. I agree about the Scriabin. If one was asking which Scriabin was most recorded, I may be correct, but that was not the question. On Amazon there are 148 CDs listed for Gaspard.

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It's strange how a thread can jog a long-forgotten memory from one's childhood. (In my case, nearly a century ago whistle).

The first time I heard the triptych of Pathétique, Moonlight and Appassionata was as a spotty teenager, while staying with my uncle's family (who are all musical, and all kids learning piano), on a cassette tape, played by an organist - Daniel Chorzempa.

When I finally had my own pocket money, I bought the same sonatas on cassette - played by Kempff, then Ashkenazy, then Backhaus, then Brendel, then Arrau, then.....

As I said, everyone (and their grandfather) was recording that trilogy even a century ago.......

P.S. Even the late Radu Lupu subsequently got in on the act, except that he substituted the Waldstein for the Appassionata. I don't think he recorded any other Beethoven sonatas.


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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by bennevis
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Schubert: D. 360,
Scriabin: Sonatas 3,4,5,9
I'd say definitely not these wink .
I meant D. 960 which has around 140 CDs listed on Amazon. I agree about the Scriabin. If one was asking which Scriabin was most recorded, I may be correct, but that was not the question. On Amazon there are 148 CDs listed for Gaspard.

You can look at this one.

https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/works/59151--ravel-gaspard-de-la-nuit/browse

Looking at the list is interesting. I did not know for example that Hewitt has recorded all Ravel solo piano music. And Lisitsa just released a CD of Ravel and Rachmaninoff with Naive.


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Originally Posted by Sidokar
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
On Amazon there are 148 CDs listed for Gaspard.
You can look at this one.
https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/works/59151--ravel-gaspard-de-la-nuit/browse
But many CDs on that list do not appear to contain Gaspard. It's hard to get a definitive list there or on Amazon(which seems to have many repeats.

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by Sidokar
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
On Amazon there are 148 CDs listed for Gaspard.
You can look at this one.
https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/works/59151--ravel-gaspard-de-la-nuit/browse
But many CDs on that list do not appear to contain Gaspard. It's hard to get a definitive list there or on Amazon(which seems to have many repeats.

Normally they do, it is just that it does not appear in the title. You have to click on full detail to get the list of titles. Like Doyen, thats a compilation of various pieces and Gaspard is in there. The CDs should be unique but there are repeats in the compilations. I guess you can take out 20 or 25 pct and that would give an approximate number. Anyway it is just indicative. But that does not count all the cds that have retired.


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I think you have to include Tchaikovsky Pno. Conc. No. 1, Rach 2, maybe Mozart D Minor or K. 467, in this.

Claire de lune, Arabesque No. 1, Moonlight (1st mvt.); Chopin Op. 9, No. 2; Für Elise, Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2, etc. Recorded "encore pieces."


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I would image the most popular pieces by Beethoven & Chopin. They’ve always been super popular, and now it’s practically sacrilegious for a pianist to not beat us over the head with as much Beethoven & Chopin as they can find.


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