Hélène Grimaud’s recording of Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto has been chosen by iTunes for its new classical series entitled “Classical Essentials”. The global campaign, which was launched today, features a selection of just 30 recordings singled out by iTunes as the “must own” albums of essential masterpieces from top quality recordings all mastered for iTunes. Hélène’s performance, which was recorded in 2007 with the Staatskapelle Dresden and Vladimir Jurowski, has been selected alongside legendary recordings by the likes of Karajan, Solti, Kubelik and Kleiber which is in itself a huge honor.
Talking at the time of recording, conductor Vladimir Jurowski commented “For me the most admirable and also the most unusual thing about Hélène’s music making is the spontaneity – in the moment of music-making its born anew … and that’s why it’s always an extremely gripping adventure to make music with her.”
Reviewing the album The London Times wrote “this Emperor concerto ditches the monument approach for the excitements of febrile drama and crisp attack” and the Philadelphia Enquirer commented “The star of the disc is Helene Grimaud, and rightly so: She usually has a firm intellectual and technical grasp on whatever she’s performing, and that’s particularly the case here. It’s penetrating, dry-eyed Beethoven rendered with such technical clarity that you realize there’s even more to the piece than what usually meets the ears.”
Hélène Grimaud and Vladimir Jurowski reunite next month with the London Philharmonic Orchestra to perform Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 on tour in Lyon, Geneva, Zurich and New York. Hélène returns to Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto (No. 5) in April for performances with the Czech Philharmonic and Jiří Bělohlávek in Birmingham, Edinburgh and Manchester.