Chopin’s waltzes may be mere soufflés, but they are very tasty ones, says the British pianist.
On your new album you’ve presented the waltzes in chronological order. What does that approach reveal about Chopin’s development in this genre?
Perhaps more than any other works of Chopin, the waltzes were not designed to be in any particular order and certainly not played as a set, but I still thought it was interesting to hear firstly the ones he approved of and published (from his youth and older age), then the ones he did not publish (similarly from youth and older age). The three extra misattributed ones complete the picture. Unlike other works, especially the Polonaises and Scherzos, I don’t think there is a significant development from early to late period. Some of the early, unpublished ones are as wonderful and curious as later published ones.
Why were so many of Chopin’s waltzes only published posthumously?
They are mainly slight works. Chopin was fastidious and a perfectionist. I think even the ones he published were not considered as major works by him, but such is his genius that there are no worthless works from his pen.
Are there hidden depths...