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ANIA DORFMANN (1899-1984)
Russian-born American pianist



Ania Dorfmann was a great pianist.  I guess she had to be in that man's world to have been the first woman pianist to be engaged by Arturo Toscanini as a soloist.  She went on to play all of the Beethoven piano concerti, starting with the Choral Fantasy (the only time Toscanini performed it), and eventually recorded the first concerto with him.

in 1916 she went to Paris Conservatory where she studied for a year with Isidor Philipp.  Her intention was to return to Russia, but the revolution had begun.  She went back to France and established a successful career performing throughout Europe, performing with conductors of the caliber of Willem Mengelberg, Sir Thomas Beecham and Sir Henry Wood.

She came to the United States in 1936.  In addition to Toscanini, she often performed with Serge Koussevitzky.  from 1956, she taught at the Juilliard School

Ania Dorfmann plays with an elan rarely encountered in this music. Her's are among the finest performances of the Grieg and Mendelssohn piano concerti I know.  (Sadly, the Mendelssohn has been removed due to copyright issues, though why anyone would want to deprice the world of this treasure for no apparent gain is beyond me.)  And what, based on the one number from his Op 12, wouldn't I give to hear more of her Schumann.  The Beethoven C major concerto is amazing.  The piece by Tchaikovsky is incredibly beautifully played.  In short, Ania Dorfmann was an extraordinary pianist of the highest order.



Beethoven  Piano Concerto 1 in C major, Op 15
Arturo Toscanini conducting the NBC Symphony Orchestra

recorded live in 1945


i Allegro con brio (beginning)



i Allegro con brio (conclusion)



ii Largo



iii Rondo. Allegro scherzando





Dorfmann in Rehearsal

Beethoven  Piano Concerto 1 in C major, Op 15
Charles Munch conducting the Boston Symphony Orchestra

00:29i Allegro con brio
10:24ii Largo
20:27iii Rondò. Allegro

recorded live in 1950




Beethoven  Concerto for Violin, Cello and Piano in C major, Op 56 "Triple Concerto"
i Allegro
14:39ii Largo
18:10iii Rondò alla polacca
with Michel Piastro, violin and Joseph Schuster, cello
Arturo Toscanini conducting the New York Philharmonic Orchestra

recorded live in 1942




Mendelssohn  Six Songs Without Words

from Op 19b
2 in A minor - 02:33 ➢ 4 in A major

from Op 30
04:373 in E major - 06:57 6 in F minor

from Op 38
10:121 in E major - 12:272 in C minor

recorded in the 1950s




Chopin  Étude in E minor, Op 25~5

recorded in 1938




Chopin  Tarantelle in A major, Op 43




Chopin  Trois Écossaises

recorded in 1935




Chopin  Nocturne 18 in E major, Op 62~2

recorded in 1938




Schumann  Fantasiestücke, Op 12~2 "Aufschwung"

recorded in 1947




Tchaikovsky   6 June ("Barcarolle") from The Seasons, Op 37b

recorded in 1954




Grieg  Piano Concerto in A minor, Op 16
i Allegro molto moderato
11:56ii Adagio
17:46iii Allegro moderato molto e marcato
Erich Leinsdorf conducting the Robin Hood Dell Orchestra of Philadelphia

recorded in 1953




von Sauer  "Echo aus Wien"

recorded in the 1930s










For those of you who enjoy murder mysteries, here is my first with a strong musical polemic as background

Murder in the House of the Muse

which is also available as an audiobook.



And this is the more recently published second mystery in the series:

Murder Follows the Muse



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