It's a Piano World. Mark Ainley collects minutiae. If you want to know where Benno Moiseiwitsch recorded Chopin on Jan. 11, 1952, Ainley can tell you not only that it was at Abbey Road Studio No. 3, but also that the pianist was using the same Steinway with which Alfred Cortot and Dinu Lipatti recorded. Ainsley's Piano Files Facebook page is a prolific journal of generously shared information, as well as rare audio clips of a beautifully curated collection of pianists like Harold Bauer, Jascha Spivakovsky, Maryla Jonas, and Josef Hofmann. www.thepianofiles.com.
- Peter Dobrin
More from Ludovic Morlot. If you think he had a lot to coordinate at his recent Curtis Symphony Orchestra concert, the new Charles Ives disc with his own Seattle Symphony Orchestra (on the Seattle Symphony Media label) often feels like the ultimate symphonic circus. Once considered unperformable, the Symphony No. 4 with choirs and orchestras in various wild juxtapositions comes through with clarity and purpose in an often dreamy panorama of Americana. Other works include the more popular Central Park in the Dark, The Unanswered Question, and the Symphony No. 3. Maybe that last piece has had more folksy performances, but the overall package is as appetizing as Ives gets.
- David Patrick Stearns