Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

REVIEW



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

alternatively
CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
Complete music for cello and piano
Twelve Variations on a Theme from Handel’s Oratorio “Judas Maccabeus” WoO 45 [11:53]
Twelve Variations on the theme “Ein mädchen oder weibchen” from Mozart’s Opera “The Magic Flute” Op. 66 [9:46]
Seven Variations on the theme “Bei mannern welch liebe fühlen” from Mozart’s opera “The Magic Flute” WoO 46 [9:35]
Sonata in F major Op. 5 No. 1 [20:39]
Sonata in G minor Op. 5 No. 2 [22:41]
Sonata in A major Op. 69 [26:24]
Sonata in C major Op. 102 No. 1 [15:03]
Sonata in D major Op. 102 No. 2 [19:17]
DVD - Behind the Beethoven Project [50:58]
Laurence Lesser (cello); HaeSun Paik (piano)
rec. Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, MA, 5-9 January 2009 (CDs) and Kumbo Art Hall, Seoul, Korea, 19-20 February 2009 (DVD)
DVD - 16:9 aspect; Regions not stated
BRIDGE 9329A/C [CDs: 75:12 + 61:03 & DVD: 50:58]

Experience Classicsonline


Beethoven’s music for cello and piano fits neatly onto two CDs, and choice amongst the many distinguished artists who have recorded them is already absurdly difficult. This new version by Lawrence Lesser and HaeSun Paik was nonetheless a task well worth undertaking and the results are very impressive and enjoyable. I hope that they will have the success they deserve.
 
Lawrence Lesser may not be a household name on the UK side of the Atlantic. He has however had a long and distinguished career as a cellist. This has included taking part in the Heifetz/Piatigorsky concerts and making the first recording of the Schoenberg Concerto, as a teacher, and as an administrator at the New England Conservatory. HaeSun Paik was a prizewinner in the Leeds Piano Competition in 1989. The present recordings were conceived as a form of 70th birthday celebration by Lawrence Lesser, who explains in the booklet notes that he has known these works since he was 10. It is clear that they have lost none of their fascination for him, and also that he knows them and has thought about them in immense detail. These are above all performances that follow unerringly every changing aspect of the character of the music. They are not showy - necessarily at times they do display the techniques of both players but there is never any sense that this is display for its own sake or that they are exaggerating or distorting any aspect of the music. These are quite simply performances in which the players allow the music to speak for itself. Given that these are amongst Beethoven’s greatest works the result is inevitably engrossing and immensely impressive. The composer was virtually inventing here a genre of works in which piano and cello are equal partners, and whose formal arrangement of movements varies from Sonata to Sonata rather than following a set pattern.
 
Not only do the performers on these discs show a perfect understanding of the music, but they also play with unfailingly beautiful tone. Despite the inherent differences between the instruments they match their respective articulation and phrasing so well that one is never bothered by any apparent incompatibility between the instruments, as can be the case with cello and piano. On the contrary, one is conscious simply of a creative musical conversation between two fine musicians. In this they are aided by a clear and well balanced recording and an excellent booklet essay by Malcolm MacDonald. Most but not all repeats are taken.
 
The DVD includes live performances of several movements from the Sonatas during later concerts in South Korea, as well as interviews in which the music, the players and the cello are discussed. Although you might not want to see this more than once it is presented in an interesting way. One minor point that struck me is that the players never look at each other, or indeed at the audience either, during the performances. Indeed the cellist would have to turn right round to do so. All communication is through the sound alone and their unobtrusive platform manner is a lesson to many better known and more fidgety players.
 
I would not suggest that this set could or should replace the many classic versions of these works, including those by Casals, Rostropovich, Fournier or whoever is your particular favourite, and clearly it is not comparable with more recent historically informed performances. It is nonetheless immensely satisfying and enjoyable, and worth hearing for its sheer musicianship and obvious devotion to the music itself. If you have room for more than one recording of these works you should certainly consider adding this to your collection.
 
John Sheppard 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.