Prelude, Chorale et Fugue
Sonata in A major
Prélude, Aria et Final

“With Franck, Korstick shows himself to be a technically outstanding master of all piano registers, with thoroughly French tonal colors, architectural vision and Beethovenian willpower. In this respect, this recording could set new standards.”

“Korstick’s opening movement of Prélude, aria et final is one of the finest on record, with its fluid and flexible maestoso pace and delightfully ‘old school’ balancing of chords. The pianist’s use of color and rubato highlights the tension and release of the music’s restless harmonic wanderlust, as well as circumventing its potential for bombast.”

“The delicate recitative at the beginning of the aria seems to glow from within, and when the main theme moves to the left hand, his right hand accompanies it with truly phenomenal tonal control, as if the chords were mere vibrations. You won’t hear this with such finesse in any other version. He plays the almost fairground-like theme of the finale with the feverish excitement that occasionally gripped the old Franck. In the end, however, everything dies away in dolcissimo chords that could hardly be breathed more perfectly.”
Fono Forum

“There must be dozens of recordings of the Franck sonata in its original form. Of this Cortot transcription I have found a few through searching on line. But they would be hard put to beat this one. Michael Korstick has the formidable technique and assurance which these works require. I have already mentioned that he must have large hands to span the chords Franck writes. He also occasionally allows a very slight delay between the hands. This was, of course, a fashion of the time, and Franck actually writes it in places, such as at the opening of Prélude, Choral et Fugue. His pedaling is skilful and unobtrusive, so that Franck’s rich textures do not degenerate into mush. He is an excellent advocate for these works, and does his best for the Prélude, Aria et Final.
Musicweb International

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