P0046. GUIOMAR NOVAËS: Bach, Mozart, Chopin, Gluck-Saint-Saëns, Guarnieri, Philipp, Liszt, Moszkowski, MacDowell, Villa-Lobos, Pinto, Mompou, Levy & Gottschalk. (England) Pearl 0170, recorded 1919-46. Transfers by Roger Beardsley. Very long out-of-print, Final Copy! - 727031017028
“Brazilian piano artistry had in Guiomar Novaës (1895-1979) a special talent, nurtured in her native culture in the manner similar to what Monique Haas meant to French music, a rarified sensibility that held a unique, exportable flavor….mostly miniatures and character pieces that respond well to her touch, phrasing, and spontaneous gift for musical nuance.
The major commitment to aspects of Villa-Lobos’ opera, 1940 and 1946, has Novaës’ traversals of various suites that exploit folk melodies and ethnic rhythms, much in the manner of Bartók and Kodály’s supple work with Hungarian music. The melodic side of this music, however, likely makes a better analogy with Robert Schumann. Novaës then pays homage to her composer-husband, Octavio Pinto (1890-1950) with five MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD, again a Brazilian incarnation of Schumann’s childlike capacity for wonder in simplicity but colored by Debussy syntax….Novaës fulfills each of Debussy’s claims for her having ‘…the qualities of a great artist…and the power of complete inner concentration which is a characteristic so rare in artists’.”
—Gary Lemco, AUDIOPHILE AUDITION, 10 January, 2015
"Novaës’ playing was never cut and dried….she seldom played the same piece of music twice the same way. Each time, she brought to it a slightly different point of view, and each time the new approach seemed perfectly natural and inevitable….Part of her appeal was in her natural approach to the keyboard. She was one of the new pianists about whom one felt that the instrument was a welded extension of her arms and fingers. A more natural, relaxed, effortless style could not be found anywhere. Her tone, in its color and subtlety, recalled the magic note-spinning of the great romantic pianists three generations [before her], in which Novaës [had been] trained.”
- Harold C. Schonberg, THE GREAT PIANISTS, 1987 Edition, pp.408-09