Two more rich piano concertos from the unparalleled Stephen Hough and the CBSO (they’ve already won Gramophone’s Record of the Year award twice). The eminent Andris Nelsons conducts, making his Hyperion debut. Schumann and Dvořák each wrote just one piano concerto, the latter being performed here in its fearsomely challenging original version.
Hough joins forces with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Andris Nelsons for a robust, grand reading that nonetheless leaves room for lyricism and introspection…[but it's in the Dvorak] that Hough truly sparkles. There's glowing tenderness, irresistible buoyancy and soaring grandeur in the first movement, Grieg-like lyricism in the Andante sostenuto…while the Finale has infectious spirit. The CBSO's playing is smart and colourful. BBC ****
Andris Nelsons and the CBSO clearly relish the symphonic nature of the [Dvorak] and their playing is one of the great pleasures here…Hough enters the conversation with great subtlety and he's certainly unafraid to point out the score's lyrical beauties, allowing the music to unfold with suppleness without underplaying its drama or, where required, heft. Gramophone