Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 11 | Martha Argerich, Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra & Jacek Kaspszyk

Martha Argerich (piano) plays Frédéric Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11 with the Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra, conducted by Jacek Kaspszyk. The concert was performed on August 27, 2010 at the Warsaw Philharmonic Concert Hall.

Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849) composed his first piano concerto in 1830. At the time, he was still living in his native Poland and was just 20 years old. The premier of Piano Concerto No. 1 took place in October of the same year at Warsaw’s National Theater, with Chopin himself playing the challenging piano part.

Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 11 was popular with audiences from the very beginning. But it also had its critics, who complained that the orchestra was only given a supporting role to the piano, which was the star of the show. And it is true that the orchestra serves merely to add atmosphere to the piano as the main part. Chopin based the piano part on the Belcanto singing of Italian operas. That’s where the many decorative artistic details come from. The musical motifs of Piano Concerto Op. 11 are based on many traditional Polish melodies. That makes the concert very memorable. It is also very romantic in character.

Almost all great piano virtuosos have played Frédéric Chopin’s first Piano Concerto. Martha Argerich, for example, performed and even recorded it many times. To everyone’s surprise, Argerich discovered new facets of the concerto each time she performed it. This is of course thanks to her virtuosity as a piano performer but also due to her temperament and her surprising spontaneity.

Martha Argerich plays Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1: The tried and tested combination for audiences to enjoy a wonderfully romantic concert!

(00:30) I. Allegro maestoso
(20:53) II. Romanze – Larghetto
(30:46) III. Rondo – Vivace

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