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Chopin, Rachmaninov: Cello Sonatas / Kniazev, Lugansky


Release Date: 02/27/2007 
Label:  Warner Classics   Catalog #: 63946   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Frédéric ChopinSergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Nikolai LuganskyAlexander Kniazev
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 14 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

With two larger-than-life artists such as Alexander Kniazev and Nikolai Lugansky working in partnership, there’s a good chance that their performances will be controversially idiosyncratic. It would be easy, for example, to take issue with their rendition of Raphael Wallfisch’s arrangement of Rachmaninov’s Vocalise. Surely the chosen tempo is impossibly slow, robbing the music of its essential nobility and simplicity. At the opposite end of the tempo spectrum, the Scherzo of the Chopin seems rushed and hard-driven, undermining the stomping rhythms of the outer sections and diminishing the lyrical ardour of the Trio. Then there’s Kniazev’s rather fussy rubato in the first movement of the Chopin. It’s far too self-conscious for my taste and Read more doesn’t seem to be applied with any sense of musical logic. Yet for all these caveats, there’s some brilliant playing on this disc. Curiously, although Kniazev and Lugansky are somewhat indulgent in the first movement of the Chopin, their Rachmaninov has a much more natural sense of ebb and flow. Both the first movement and the demonic Scherzo are particularly compelling, and Lugansky produces some spinetingling articulation in the forceful climaxes that dominate the central section of the Finale. If the recording of the piano had been more focused, this version of the Rachmaninov might have warranted benchmark status.

-- Erik Levi, BBC Music Magazine
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Works on This Recording

1.
Sonata for Cello and Piano in G minor, B 160/Op. 65 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Nikolai Lugansky (Piano), Alexander Kniazev (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1845-1846; Paris, France 
Venue:  The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England 
Length: 30 Minutes 39 Secs. 
Notes: The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England (07/03/2006 - 07/06/2006) 
2.
Sonata for Cello and Piano in G minor, Op. 19 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Alexander Kniazev (Cello), Nikolai Lugansky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1901; Russia 
Venue:  The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England 
Length: 34 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Notes: The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England (07/03/2006 - 07/06/2006) 
3.
Songs (14), Op. 34: no 14, Vocalise by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Nikolai Lugansky (Piano), Alexander Kniazev (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1912-1915; Russia 
Venue:  The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England 
Length: 8 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Notes: Arranger: Raphael Wallfisch.
The Maltings, Snape, Suffolk, England (07/03/2006 - 07/06/2006)
Composition written: Russia (1912 - 1915). 

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