July 27, 2023

Selection of Romances by Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky

Pentatone releases Rachmaninoff & Tchaikovsky Romances, together with star tenor Piotr Beczala and the acclaimed lied accompanist Helmut Deutsch, in August 2023.

Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky Romances, Sung with Italianità

Star tenor Piotr Beczala presents a selection of romances by Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky, together with the acclaimed lied accompanist Helmut Deutsch. The romance was the most popular musical genre in nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Russia, practised by professionals as well as amateurs. Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff both enriched this genre with their lyricism and melodic invention. Elevated by Deutsch’s splendid accompaniment, Beczala delivers these songs with a great sense for the Slavic idiom and meaning of the words, combined with colourful lyricism and italianità, perfectly fitting the Russian and cosmopolitan musical language of these two masters.

Piotr Beczala is one of the most sought-after tenors of his age, both on the opera and concert stage. His Pentatone debut album Vincerò! has been one of the most successful and critically acclaimed opera recital albums of the last few years. During the 2021 Opus Klassik Awards, Piotr Beczala was crowned as Singer of the Year for this exceptional recording. Pianist Helmut Deutsch is a first-class song accompanist, working together with the greatest vocalists of today. He makes his Pentatone debut. 

They are not only wonderful to sing but the piano parts are also amazing to perform. This music requires the highest level of communication and concentration between the singer and pianist. Our only frustration, once we began to work on this album, was that we had to leave out so many fascinating and interesting songs and focus on a relatively small group that could shine a light on this material.

The idea of this interpretation is that we want to truly show how the composers wrote these songs and so we have discarded some of the traditional embellishments that have grown up around them over the years. We both wanted to present how we interpret this music — how we sing and play Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff. What is extremely important to show is that each song tells a separate story — even when they are written as a group together — with a beginning, a progression, and a conclusion. Our challenge is to tease out the subtleties of each exquisite piece.

We both strongly feel that the work of these two great composers belongs to world culture — they are landmarks in the history of music that belong to all of us and go far beyond national boundaries. In a similar way that Shakespeare and Beethoven belong to the world too.”

Piotr Beczala

Digital Release Date: 25 AUGUST 2023

Physical Release: AUGUST 2023

Released as 1 CD and in digital formats for streaming and high-resolution downloads.