CLASSICAL

Schumann, Robert: Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54. Liszt, Franz: Totentanz. Byron Janis, piano. Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner, conductor. (RCA Red Seal .5 Series ARP1-4668.) - RCA's stunning half-speed remastered releases of older stereo performances continues with this outstanding disk, recorded in February 1959. The ''Totentanz'' saw the light of day, but the Schumann was never released, presumably because a year later Reiner recorded it with the then-new piano sensation Van Cliburn. That oversight is now handsomely rectified. The Schumann is exceptional - eloquent, subtlely nuanced, superbly played, and masterfully accompanied. The Liszt is brilliantly, fiercely rendered. Janis's recording career flourished in the late '50s and '60s, and it is good to be reacquainted with this impressive artist. The quality of the remastering is outstanding - clear, open, virtually no tape hiss. In the Liszt, balances become a tat diffuse, but this is a mere blemish on an otherwise splendid release.

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