Certainly a very challenging piece for piano, written by a man with extreme ability for the instrument, here’s Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in G minor played on viola by Mathis Rochat.
Rochat used Ernst Schliephake’s existing violin transcription of the work as inspiration, renaming it Capriccio rather than Prelude.
’I was blown away by Frank Peter Zimmermann’s performance of Schliephake’s arrangement and became obsessed with the idea of playing it on the viola,’ Rochat told The Strad. ’I renamed the Prelude for Solo Piano to Capriccio on a Theme by Rachmaninoff because the rendition of the piece (especially in its most flowing lyrical passages) had a more martial and virtuosic character than the original. ’
The work features on Rochat’s upcoming album Rachmaninoff Stories, which comprises many works arranged and recorded for viola for the first time.
Rachmaninoff Stories will be released on Prospero on 16 September.