Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Opus 18, II: Adagio Sostenuto

The Russian composer, pianist and conductor Sergey Rachmaninov (also written as Sergei Rachmaninoff, 1873-1943) is one of my favourite composers of the classical Romantic era.

After mentioning in my post from yesterday that it was World Mental Health Day, it seems fitting to feature Rachmaninov today. As some know, he descended into depression illness for three years following the death of one of his major influences, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893).

The Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Opus 18, was the first work Rachmaninov finished after his illness and the writer’s block that accompanied it. His orchestral works are grand, melodic and colourful, and this concerto is no exception… a beautiful sign of recovery.

I especially love the second movement (adagio sostenuto). In its slowest, softest parts it offers delicate sounds of flute and other wind instruments weaving with the lilting piano and subtle orchestra. It is divine music, truly a balm for the soul.

Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.

Here’s the audio for the second movement from the Krystian Zimerman YouTube topic channel:

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