Rachmaninoff: Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39
Rachmaninoff: Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39

Pavel Dombrovsky,

Rachmaninoff: Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39

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The Études-tableaux (“study pictures”) are two sets, opus numbers 33 and 39, of piano études composed by Sergei Rachmaninoff. The Op. 39 études-tableaux was written between 1916 and 1917 and published in 1917.

Sergei Rachmaninoff did not disclose what inspired each piece, stating, “I don’t believe in the artist that discloses too much of his images. Let them paint for themselves what it most suggests.”

The Op. 39 set is considered much more demanding technically than the Op. 33 and has been called extremely virtuosic in its approach to keyboard writing, calling for unconventional hand positions, wide leaps for the fingers and considerable technical strength from the performer. Also, “the individual mood and passionate character of each piece” pose musical problems that preclude performance from those not possessing a tremendous physical technique.

Track List

Sergei Rachmaninoff:

  1. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 1 in C Minor
  2. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 2 in A Minor
  3. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 3 in F-Sharp Minor
  4. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 4 in B Minor
  5. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 5 in E-Flat Minor
  6. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 6 in A Minor
  7. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 7 in C Minor
  8. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 8 in D Minor
  9. Etudes-tableaux, Op. 39: No. 9 in D Major

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