Piano Concerto in F minor, Op. 6

III. Vivace. Scherzando


  • Recorded: 6th January 2022
  • Record Place: Studio 1of the Czech Radio, Prague
  • First Release: 2024
  • (P) 2024 Český rozhlas
  • Genre: Orchestral

Artists

  • music by: Karel Kovařovic
  • piano: Marek Kozák
  • conductor: Robert Jindra
  • musical group: Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra

Album

Marek Kozák, Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, Robert Jindra

Kovařovic, Bořkovec, Kaprálová: Forgotten Czech Piano Concertos

Catalogue Number: SU 4337-2
Published: 8th March 2024
Genre: Orchestral
Format: 1 CD
Karel Kovařovic (1862-1920) – Piano Concerto in F minor, Op. 6 (1887). Vítězslava Kaprálová (1915-1940) – Piano Concerto in D minor, Op. 7 (1935). Pavel Bořkovec (1894-1972) – Piano Concerto No. 2 (1949)

Marek Kozák – piano, Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, conductor Robert Jindra

It would very much seem that the 19th- and 20th-century Czech piano concerto repertoire begins and ends with Dvořák and Martinů. The present recording, however, serves to prove that this is far from being the case. It contains three piano concertos that have been – undeservedly – overlooked. Vítězslava Kaprálová wrote the Piano Concerto in D minor, characterised by brilliant instrumentation and an engrossing solo part, at the age of 20 as her graduation work. The premiere, which she herself conducted, met with great critical acclaim. In 1937, the young composer moved to Paris to study with Bohuslav Martinů. Just a year later, Kaprálová was lauded at the International Society for Contemporary Music festival in London, which she opened conducting the BBC Orchestra performing her Military Sinfonietta. In 1940, when she was just 25, the gifted artist’s life and career were sadly terminated by a serious illness. At that very age, Karel Kovařovic created his one and only piano concerto. A pupil of Zdeněk Fibich, he would later on primarily gain recognition as a conductor and serve as director of Prague’s National Theatre Opera (1900-1920). Kovařovic’s Piano Concerto in F minor affords the soloists great scope to display their virtuosity. Pavel Bořkovec, a pupil of J. B. Foerster and Josef Suk, wrote his Piano Concerto No. 2 after World War II. At the time a mature artist, as a teacher he cultivated a new generation of major Czech composers (Petr Eben, Jan Novák, Vladimír Sommer, etc.). The main protagonist of the present album, the pianist Marek Kozák, who has garnered accolades at a number of competitions (Zurich, Bolzano, Bremen, Prague, and elsewhere), has a penchant for exploring little-known and forgotten landscapes, as attested to by this revelatory recording.

Three piano concertos worthy of rediscovery
Karel Kovařovic
Piano Concerto in F minor, Op. 6
1. I. Allegro affettuoso 15:53
2. II. Larghetto 07:19
3. III. Vivace. Scherzando 08:43
Vítězslava Kaprálová
Piano Concerto in D minor, Op. 7
4. I. Allegro entusiastico 10:10
5. II. Largo 03:32
6. III. Allegro 08:48
Pavel Bořkovec
Piano Concerto No. 2
7. I. Agitato 06:55
8. II. Poco lento 07:25
9. III. Vivace 06:41

Linked video