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Brahms: Cello Sonatas; Dvorak, Suk / Isserlis, Hough


Release Date: 10/12/2010 
Label:  Hyperion   Catalog #: 30005   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Johannes BrahmsAntonín DvorákJosef Suk
Performer:  Stephen HoughSteven Isserlis
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 14 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews


Steven Isserlis first recorded Brahms' cello sonatas for Hyperion in the mid-1980s with Peter Evans at the piano, in sensitive, forthright, and excellently engineered interpretations. His remakes nearly 20 years later generally reveal a more flexible, longer-lined approach, helped by an even more pliable bow arm and wider range of tone color. The earlier recording may be hard to find, but if you happen to have a copy, do an A/B comparison with the F major sonata's second movement and you'll immediately understand what I mean. With Stephen Hough's world-class keyboard mastery, the piano part's thick chords and frequent three-against-two rhythmic patterns rarely have sounded so transparent and lithe.
Read more Notice also the unusually lucid delineation of the busy canonic intersections in the E minor sonata's first movement, the wry lilt in the central movement's outer sections, and the F major finale's refreshing lightness and playful demeanor, making Brahms' frequent displacements of phrases against the meter seem utterly uncontrived.

Naturally there are other valid ways to play these works, and I don't expect to trade in Rostropovich's imposing, large-scaled vantage point, nor the matchless third-movement fugal interplay Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax achieve in their Sony remake of the E minor sonata. However, the affectionate and characterful Suk and Dvorák performances that fill out this disc may well give Isserlis and Hough the edge among reference editions. And let's not forget to mention Hyperion's atmospheric, beautifully balanced engineering. Highly recommended. [2/22/2006]

– Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com [reviewing the original release]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Sonata for Cello and Piano no 1 in E minor, Op. 38 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Stephen Hough (Piano), Steven Isserlis (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862-1865; Austria 
2.
From the Bohemian forest, Op. 68/B 133: no 5, Silent Woods by Antonín Dvorák
Performer:  Stephen Hough (Piano), Steven Isserlis (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Bohemia 
3.
Rondo for Cello and Piano in G minor, Op. 94 by Antonín Dvorák
Performer:  Steven Isserlis (Cello), Stephen Hough (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1893; Bohemia 
4.
Ballade for Cello and Piano in D minor, Op. 3 no 1 by Josef Suk
Performer:  Stephen Hough (Piano), Steven Isserlis (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1890; Prague, Czech Republ 
5.
Serenade for Cello and Piano in A major, Op. 3 no 2 by Josef Suk
Performer:  Stephen Hough (Piano), Steven Isserlis (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: ?1898; Prague, Czech Republ 
6.
Sonata for Cello and Piano no 2 in F major, Op. 99 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Steven Isserlis (Cello), Stephen Hough (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886; Austria 

Featured Sound Samples

Serenade for Cello and Piano (Suk)
Cello Sonata no 2 (Brahms): IV. Allegro molto

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