In 1991, Daniel Barenboim and Sergiu Celibidache met on the stage of the prestigious Stadthalle Erlangen for a stunning interpretation of Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 1, a remarkable distillation of the ardor of the young Brahms, who began writing the work at just 21 in 1854. Though it met with a mixed reception at the time, surely owing to its complexity and unconventionality, the concerto is now highly esteemed and considered one of the composer's masterpieces.
The extraordinary rapport between Barenboim and Celibidache, two of the most respected artists of all time, results in a singular reading of this masterpiece, fiery and finely wrought. Dedicated to Robert and Clara Schumann, the work is one of the longest piano concertos in the repertoire, a product of many years of reflection and refinement—and one can only imagine that this rendering would have pleased the composer, whose spirit seems to animate every note.