Hot on the heels of his sensational performance of Saint-Saëns's fifth piano concerto at the Proms comes Stephen Hough's delightful new collection of the complete Chopin waltzes, played with the vivid virtuosity he brought to his exotic "Egyptian" exploration in the heat of the Albert Hall last week. Hough's decision to record the eight published waltzes in chronological order allows us to gain a feel for Chopin's glorious development in this genre, and he adopts a similar scheme with the nine posthumously published numbers, adding three with doubtful attribution and the triple-time Op 9 No 2 E flat major nocturne – a waltz by another name. Essential listening.
Stephen Pritchard has written on classical music for most of his 45 years in journalism. He was the Observer's first readers' editor, and prior to that was a managing editor and production editor