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A search for the essence of music with Paul Lewis

Pianist Paul Lewis opens up a colourful selection of classical music from the inside - revealing familiar and unfamiliar works in a new light.

Today pianist Paul Lewis is bemused by a performance on the player-piano by Marc-André Hamelin, finds the voice of Dame Clara Butt both terrifying and entrancing, and discovers that the combination of two voices, double bass and the composer Antônio Carlos Jobim serves to conjure up the very essence of chamber music. He also puts things into perspective by subjecting us to ‘one of the worst recordings of all time’.

At 2 o’clock Paul plays his Must Listen piece - a work by Schubert for male voices and strings in which Paul hears a depth of sound colour that he’s often searching for in his piano playing.

The series in which each week a musician reveals a selection of music - from the inside.

A Tandem Production for BBC Radio 3

1 hour, 58 minutes

Music Played

  • Baldassare Galuppi

    Sonata in C 1st movement

    Performer: Arturo Michelangeli.
    • PHILIPS.
  • Joseph Haydn

    String Quartet No.30 in E flat movement 4 - Presto

    Ensemble: Lindsay String Quartet.
    • ASV.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Symphony No.4 Op.60 - Adagio

    Orchestra: Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor: Sir Simon Rattle.
    • EMI.
  • Hugo Wolf

    Trunken Mussen Wir Alle Sein?

    Performer: Daniel Barenboim. Singer: Dietrich Fischer‐Dieskau.
    • DG.
  • Marc-André Hamelin

    Circus Galop for player piano

    Performer: Bosendorfer Grand Piano with Ampico Player Piano Mechanism. Performer: Fischer Grand Piano with Ampico Player Piano Mechanism.
    • MDG.
  • Francis Poulenc

    Gloria - 3rd movement - Domine Deus

    Orchestra: Boston Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Seiji Ozawa. Singer: Kathleen Battle.
    • DG.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Diabelli Variations 31-33

    Performer: Paul Lewis.
  • The Legendary Stardust Cowboy


    • The World's Worst Record Show.
    • K-TEL.
    • 3.
  • Franz Schubert

    Gesang Der Geister Uber Den Wassern D714

    Performer: Ilse Wincor. Performer: Tobias Lea. Performer: Raphael Flieder. Performer: Franz Bartolomey. Singer: Josef Niederhammer. Choir: Arnold Schönberg Chor. Conductor: Erwin Ortner.
    • TELDEC.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Ombra mai fu

    Singer: Clara Butt.
  • Witold Lutosławski

    Paganini Variations for 2 pianos

    Performer: Martha Argerich. Performer: Nelson Freire.
    • PHILIPS.
  • Antônio Carlos Jobim

    Inutil Paisagem

    Performer: Esperanza Spalding. Singer: Esperanza Spalding. Singer: Gretchen Parlato.
    • Chamber Music Society.
    • HEADS UP.
    • 10.
  • Johannes Brahms

    2nd Symphony - Allegro con spirito

    Orchestra: Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Marek Janowski.
    • ASV.
  • Pierre Boulez

    Notation II Tres vif

    Orchestra: Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
    • DG.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    A minor Rondo K.511

    Performer: Alfred Brendel.
    • PHILIPS.
  • Benjamin Britten

    Nocturne Op.60 - Below, the thunders of the upper deep

    Performer: Amy Harman. Singer: Allan Clayton. Orchestra: Aurora Orchestra. Conductor: Nicholas Collon.
    • WARNER.


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