A few weeks ago I shared with my readers Saint-Saens’ Piano Concerto No. 1. To my surprise, I received a lot more emails about this piano concerto than any other piece of music. However, most of them said something along the lines of “I love No. 2”, or “No. 3 is the best” or “What the 1st is to you, the 5th is to me.” I’ve been (re)listening to the Pascal Roge recording (my wife listened to it when we were dating). He plays all five concertos on one recording (2 CDs).
I agree, these piano concertos are romantic gems that grab your soul, squeeze it, and turn it upside down. Concertos No. 1 and No. 5 were composed almost forty years apart but both are energetic and full of optimism. I found that listening to all the concertos continuously, one after another, it is almost hard to say where one stops and the next begins. Why split hairs, let’s enjoy all of them: Saint-Saens piano concertos 1-5.