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translation

because

we all

sing

a different

song

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From a CD review...

If we compare the performances of the Ligeti Etudes by Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Csalog, in certain studies no marked difference can be felt, though the dynamic scale of Csalog’s Désordre (Etude no. 1) is fuller, the process more plastic, and the arc of tension “swings” further out. Their interpretations of Galamb borong (Etude no. 7) are also of equal value...
.. In Etude no. 2 (Cordes à vide) there is a significant difference, in Csalog’s favour: the deferring and delaying of one or two notes, and the use of refined agogics makes this far more poetic than Aimard’s reading: the “antici- pation” of the leading-notes to the destination note is gripping, and the voice-leading of the melody is far more powerful. Similar things can be said of Etude no. 5 (Arc-en-ciel). In Etude no. 10 (Der Zauberlehrling) Csalog beats Aimard, as it were, on his own ground (dear me, we have descended to sports metaphors after all); his playing is more virtuoso, and more importantly, in his performance the “coming up against the brick wall”, reaching the limits of the register, becomes a far more dramatic gesture. In Csalog’s version, The Devil’s Staircase (Etude no. 13, L’escalier du diable) rises head and shoulders above Aimard’s. Although the French pianist’s tempos are generally quicker, in this movement it is Csalog who acquits himself faster – yet this is the least important issue. The dynamic scale, which in Aimard’s playing remains artificially dampened, in Csalog’s opens out. Just as in Etude no. 10, the collisions with the boundaries of the register become huge climaxes, and since these climaxes occur very frequently in this study, it is all to Csalog’s credit that they do not blunten one another, but perfectly realise the large form in this longest of Ligeti’s piano studies. I would go so far as to say that Ligeti’s studies, which until now even the Hungarian public has encountered primarily in Pierre-Laurent Aimard’s playing (both on disc and at live concerts), and which have already won undivided admiration, seem even more important compositions in Gábor Csalog’s reading.