"She knows what she is doing every minute of the time. It is amazing!" -- Josef Hofmann after hearing Ruth Slenczynska in her New York debut at Town Hall, 1933.
A legendary pianist and virtuosa, Ruth Slenczynska is celebrating her 75th birthday with this release of her first studio recordings in over two decades. This is Ms. Slencznska's first and only Schumann recording. She studied with the greatest pianists of the 20th century, including Egon Petri, Artur Schnabel, Alfred Cortot and Sergei Rachmaninov. Her interpretations of Schumann's piano works show her masterful phrasing and pacing, impeccable musical taste, along with her golden singing tone. This is truly a recording in the grand pianistic tradition!"
Reviews"Ruth Slenczynska is a former child prodigy whose adult career often had her barnstorming across the US with the Boston Pops as well as hopping between South Africa and Vienna with near-daily concerts. Slenczynska's fingers probably have more mileage on them than any major pianist since Arthur Rubinstein. As of this recording in 1999, this mileage is apparent in the best possible ways. At age 75, the bright, crystalline clarity of her sonority seems to have even more substance, particularly as caught in this straightforward acoustic. She maintains a remarkable smoothness of line that makes her performances immediately identifiable, along with a fiercely chiseled quality that dares you to think the music should be played any differently. Tiny rubatos are everywhere throughout this disc, often within a given phrase; the effect is of a fresh variation to every thematic restatement, whether in the wonder-filled simplicity of Kinderszenen's opening movement or in the climax of the first movement of Piano Sonata No.2, in which her phrasing delivers great cumulative energy. Especially happy meetings of wisdom and fingers are heard in the 'The Knight of the Hobby-Horse' movement of Kinderszenen, in which the notes splash out in waves with seemingly spontaneous force, underscored by that elemental Slenczynska bass, which seems to rise from the bowels of the earth. This disc is a treasure." - Stereophile