There are minimal
details available concerning this private disc, so I can’t say
where it was recorded or when. I would assume very recently
and maybe in New England, though it’s possible that the duo
was taped on one of their many national or international tours.
Dutch-born cellist Dieuwke Davydov studied with Tibor de Machula
and later with Leonard Rose at Juilliard since when she has
performed widely and now teaches at Middlebury College. Pianist
Diana Fanning is also based at Middlebury and performs frequently
in Vermont; I’ve not heard her CD of music by Debussy, Chopin
and Janáček called Musical Treasures, which has
been very well received, not least on this site by Rob Barnett.
has a good curve to it; Couperin as a baroque warm-up, Bach
to stake intellectual credentials, the Beethoven to add variety,
Debussy to cast the net into the twentieth century and finally
the big Mendelssohn. The Couperin Pièces en concert make
for an enjoyable opening to the recital; La Tromba is
especially well done, nicely accented and well buoyed rhythmically.
It gives a slightly, though enjoyably, Old School start to the
concert. The Bach sonata has a warm, rather noble gravity and
the understanding between the two musicians is secure and understanding
– questions of tone and balance have clearly been securely resolved.
Fanning is imperturbable and sensitive whilst Davydov essays
one of two rather prominent but elegant portamenti in the slow
movement. Under the pressure of the moment the cellist’s intonation
does suffer though.
The Beethoven is
amiably and confidently projected. The Debussy is something
of a victim of the rather swimmy acoustic, which has the two
musicians at something of a distance. The consequence is that,
whilst the tempi are right, there’s a lack of intimacy and immediacy.
The pizzicati in the Sérénade fortunately are not overdone as
they have been in some big name performances, sometimes grotesquely
so. The Mendelssohn sonata is warmly accomplished though to
those for whom the 1939 Feuermann/Rupp is a lodestar this will
invariably seem less intense, biting and sweeping. I wish for
instance that the cello’s lower string melodies had sung out
A good souvenir
then of this duo in concert – a slight shame about the acoustic
though. I would try the address above for further details.