Intelligent programming of Enescu, Berg and more from Karim Said
Echoes from an Empire: Works by Berg, Bartók, Enescu, Janacek, Schoenberg, Webern,
OA CD9029 D
The young Jordanian pianist Karim Said is strongly associated with Barenboim’s West Eastern Divan orchestra. With this intelligently programmed CD, however, Said shows us he can stand on his own. All composers featured here broke away from tonality, with Schoenberg being the most radical; his Three Piano Pieces opus 11, which concludes the disc, closes a chapter in history Said convincingly lays open in this recital. His two pupils Berg and Webern wrote little for the piano, and the opening Berg Sonata opus 1 leads effortlessly into Bartók’s Three Rondos and Schoenberg’s work. I have heard the Berg with more élan and the Enescu Suite No 2 with fewer rough edges, but these are minor complaints in a performance that few pianists today can challenge.