Ivo Pogorelich returns to sign exclusive contract with Sony Classical

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By Ellie Palmer

05 April 2019

The legendary Croatian pianist is due to release a brand new album this autumn.

Sony Classical has signed an exclusive long-term recording contract with legendary pianist Ivo Pogorelich. Scheduled for release in autumn 2019, Pogorelich has turned to Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Sonata in B flat minor, Op. 36 as the centrepiece for his first new project, bookended by Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas No. 22 in F major, Op. 54, and No. 24 in F sharp major, Op. 78.  

Pogorelich first came to the classical music world’s attention when he was eliminated in the third round of the 1980 International Chopin Piano Competition. Martha Argerich was on the jury, proclaiming him a ‘genius’, and she was so dismayed he didn’t make it into the finals that she resigned from the jury in protest.

Pogorelich performs Chopin's Scherzo No3 Op 39 at the 1980 Chopin Competition.

 

Deutsche Grammophon saw his talent and signed him up shortly after the Competition, becoming an exclusive DG artist in 1982. His recordings from DG divided his critics continuously. He often went against what the composer notated, however, it was always with a stupendous technique to support him. 

Pianist editor Erica Worth often heard him in recital, including at the Grafenegg Festival in Austria in the mid-2000s where, during his performance of Beethoven’s last Sonata Op 111, the festival’s director walked out during his idiosyncratic performance. His following performance of Mily Balakirev's Islamey was earth-shatteringly amazing.

Of his new collaboration with Sony Classical, Ivo Pogorelich said, “I am very glad that Sony expressed interest in my current work.  Many years ago the founder of the company, Mr. Akio Morita, presented me with a gift - a remastered set of the original recordings of Sergei Rachmaninoff. On my first Sony recording – soon to be released – I play a work by Sergei Rachmaninoff, his Sonata No. 2 in B flat minor, Op. 36 and I am very pleased by this association!”

Bogdan Roscic, President, Sony Classical added: “Ivo Pogorelich’s discography is one of the seven wonders of recorded music, and I have been trying to add to it for a long time now. We couldn’t be happier that he has decided to go back to the studio and Sony Classical will be releasing his new work starting later this year.”

Pogorelich's 1983 DG release is one of his most famous.

The Rachmaninoff recording was made in the concert hall in Raiding, Austria, next to Franz Liszt’s birthplace, the Beethoven at Schloss Elmau in Germany.