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The concept lying behind pianist Elisabeth Leonskaja’s new recording entitled “Saudade” stems from no set of musicological ideas; nor does it have any programmatic basis. Instead, it derives from an emotional state or feeling.Saudade expresses a fundamental emotional state, close to melancholy, spurred on by one’s distance – in time or space – from someone or something loved; it involves bridging that distance. Often it implies the suppressed awareness that that person or thing will perhaps never return.

The sound conjured up in Elisabeth Leonskaja’s saudade is that of Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich and Rachmaninov. The pianist sets this feeling to music with composers and compositions which have accompanied her throughout her life and career.

Sonata in G major, Op 37 ‘Grand Sonata’ by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)

Sonata No 2 in B minor, Op 61 by Dmitry Shostakovich (1906-1975)

Prélude Op. 3 No 2 in C-sharp minor by Sergey Rachmaninov (1873-1943)
Prelude, Op 32 No 12 in G sharp minor by Sergey Rachmaninov (1873-1943)
Prelude, Op 23 No 6, in E flat major by Sergey Rachmaninov
Élégie Op 3 No 1 in E-flat minor
 by Sergey Rachmaninov (1873-1943)

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