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Modern Milestones - Debussy, Etc / Bohórquez, Groh


Release Date: 07/18/2006 
Label:  Berlin Classics   Catalog #: 1783   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Claude DebussySergei ProkofievBenjamin Britten
Performer:  Claudio BohorquezMarkus Groh
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 55 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Under the title ‘Modern Milestones’, Claudio Bohórquez brings together three 20th-century cello sonatas that may have little relation one with another but work well as a nicely contrasted programme. Bohórquez, of Peruvian and Uruguayan parentage, was born and raised in Germany and is based in Berlin. Having studied with Boris Pergamenschikov, he has developed not just a formidable technique but the gift of drawing out the emotional undertow in these works, which regularly break away from the conventions of the cello sonata.

In the Debussy Sonata he brings out the improvisational element in the writing, with its sudden changes of mood, and relishes the quirkiness of the pizzicato writing in the central Serenade
Read more before a light and resilient account of the finale. At little more than 10 minutes, it may seem like a miniature but Bohórquez makes it a major statement.

The Prokofiev owes much to the help and inspiration of the then young Mstislav Rostropovich – it was written when the composer’s health was failing – and Bohórquez shows the power of the first movement, measured until the final animato section. His account of the central Moderato is built on high contrasts between the wit of the opening and the lyricism of later passages, while power again dominates in his weighty reading of the strongly rhythmic Allegro finale.

Rostropovich also inspired Britten’s Cello Sonata of 1961, his first work for the instrument, which started a sequence of compositions for the great cellist. The opening, with its seemingly hesitant repetitions of a simple two-note motif, seems to convey the composer’s wariness at launching into the project, and Bohórquez, like Rostropovich in his classic recording with the composer (London, 10/89), makes it seem like an improvisation.

As in the Debussy, he relishes the wit in the pizzicato writing of the second movement, and in the Elegia slow movement the hushed tension is even more intense than with Rostropovich at a rather broader tempo. The finale is just as thrilling in its brilliance, with well balanced sound adding to the impact. An unusual mix of works but a rewarding one.

-- Edward Greenfield, Gramophone [5/2006]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Sonata for Cello and Piano by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Claudio Bohorquez (Cello), Markus Groh (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1915; France 
Venue:  Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig 
Length: 10 Minutes 45 Secs. 
Notes: Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig (08/10/2005 - 08/13/2005) 
2.
Sonata for Cello and Piano in C major, Op. 119 by Sergei Prokofiev
Performer:  Claudio Bohorquez (Cello), Markus Groh (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1949; USSR 
Venue:  Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig 
Length: 24 Minutes 12 Secs. 
Notes: Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig (08/10/2005 - 08/13/2005) 
3.
Sonata for Cello and Piano in C major, Op. 65 by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Claudio Bohorquez (Cello), Markus Groh (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1961; England 
Venue:  Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig 
Length: 19 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Notes: Central German Radio Studio, Leipzig (08/10/2005 - 08/13/2005) 

Sound Samples

Cello Sonata in D minor: I. Prologue
Cello Sonata in D minor: II. Serenade
Cello Sonata in D minor: III. Finale
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 119: I. Andante grave
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 119: II. Moderato
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 119: III. Allegro ma non troppo
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 65: I. Dialogo
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 65: II. Scherzo-pizzicato
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 65: III. Elegia
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 65: IV. Marcia
Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 65: V. Moto Perpetuo

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