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Feature: “The 100 best pieces of classical music — as chosen by the critics” – The Times (UK)

The Times (UK), 29 April 2023

The 100 best pieces of classical music as chosen by the critics

The Times has just released their list of the 100 best classical recordings of all time, as selected by their music critics. Among the artists featured is Hélène Grimaud and her renowned recording of Schumann’s Piano Concerto in A Minor Op. 54 (Staatskapelle Dresden, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Deutsche Grammophon). This iconic work is featured in the section titled “Love,” which highlights some of the most romantic and memorable recordings in all of classical music.


Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto (1845)

The recording Hélène Grimaud: Reflection, Staatskapelle Dresden/Salonen (Deutsche Grammophon)

Robert Schumann’s devotion to Clara Schumann is literally spelt out in his Piano Concerto, using her first name as a musical cypher. He knew, no doubt, that she would be the one playing it — and Clara championed the work even when audiences were lukewarm. Now it’s one of the most beloved concertos in the repertoire for its free-spirited invention and poetic sensibility, assets that Hélène Grimaud has in spades. Her recording is part of an album that celebrates Robert, Clara and Brahms, who was devoted to both Schumanns and whose decades-long relationship with the widowed Clara may have included more than just affectionate letters.