We all have fantasies which we love to dive into. On this Album, I will be diving into the fantasy worlds of several of the most celebrated composers. In music, the ‘fantasie’ is one of the freest genres and each composer explores it in his own way.
For this Album I have chosen some of my favourites. The recording opens and closes with two fantasy-sonatas (‘Sonata quasi una Fantasia’ ). In it there is a beautiful symmetry, as well as a common ‘moonlight’ theme. In Beethoven’s case the name ‘Moonlight’ was given to his sonata op. 27 no. 2 posthumously by the German music critic and poet Ludwig Rellstab (and although Beethoven had no such intention for this, the name really stuck to it). As for Scriabin’s sonata it’s quite a different story. We know from his notes that he worked on the piece during his honeymoon in Crimea and that he took his inspiration from a beautiful quiet night while sitting and admiring the sea view in the light of a full moon.
Of the two other fantasies on this album, the Fantasy op. 49 by Chopin, a piece which has been so long in my repertoire, is a most profound, powerful and dramatic work. There is a deeply intense and powerful struggle for survival throughout the piece, starting with a marche funebre at the begining, followed by a pure chorale-prayer in the middle and to close, a heavenly recitative of the soul.The ‘central’ work on this recording is Schumann’s Fantasy op. 17, which I had been in love with long before I started playing it. Schumann wrote the first movement when he had fallen madly in love with Clara but couldn’t be with her because of her father’s objections. There is so much passion, tenderness, hope and frustration, agitation and calmness in this music. The second and third movements were composed somewhat later - the second being a celebration in a glorious and positive spirit, while the third travels to an extra dimension. It is simply the music of heaven.
All together the four fantasies make a really beautiful and varied program which I do hope everyone will enjoy!
- Anna Fedorova, pianist