Album: Chopin, Journal Intime – Alexandre Tharaud (Virgin Classics)

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The Independent Culture

All the rage in literary circles, the "personal history" has only lately caught on in classical music.

Here, Alexandre Tharaud traces his relationship with Chopin from pre-school experiences of listening to an elderly ballet-accompanist play waltzes in 4/4 time, through the first piece he learnt (Contredanse), his conservatoire audition (the second Ballade), his student "party piece" (the F minor Fantasie), and snapshots of touring life. The sound is sometimes over-bright but Tharaud's playing is never less than elegant.