MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around

2021
56,451 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here

     
  
 







Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer

International mailing


 
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

 

paid for
advertisements

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews


TROUBADISC
Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas
All Troubadisc reviews


FOGHORN Classics

Alexandra-Quartet
Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

 


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Postmaster
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

 

Discs for review may be sent to:
Jonathan Woolf
76 Lushes Road
Loughton
Essex IG10 3QB
United Kingdom

jonathan_woolf@yahoo.co.uk


 

REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

Availability

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897)
Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 1 in E minor, Op. 38 [24:10]
Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 2 in F major, Op. 99 [24:19]
Annlies Schmidt de Neveu (cello)
Rolf Knieper (piano)
rec. 1960
FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR1061 [48:30]

The German cellist Annlies Schmidt de Neveu was born in 1915. Emanuel Feuermann was her teacher. As well as being a cellist in several German orchestras, she also forged a limited solo career, giving the German premiere of Jean Françaix’ Fantasie with the Berlin Philharmonic under Sergiu Celibidache, and the French premiere of the Samuel Barber Cello Concerto. From 1968 to 1980 she taught at the Karlsruhe Music Academy, and was a member of the Karlsruhe Knieper Trio. She died at the age of ninety-five in 2010.

I recently reviewed her cycle of the Bach Cello Suites, set down in 1957-8 for Ducretet Thomson (300C043/5) and also issued by Forgotten Records (FR118/9 - review). There I expressed some reservations regarding her playing which, at times, seemed devoid of expression, and relentlessly metronomic. I was pleased to be given the opportunity to review this recent release of the two Brahms Cello Sonatas which she recorded in 1960 with the pianist Rolf Knieper, a pupil of Eduard Erdmann, Edwin Fischer and Claudio Arrau.

Some of the problems which beset the Bach cycle are evident here. Compared with other cellists who have recorded this pair of sonatas, du Pré/Barenboim, Fournier/Backhaus and Tortelier/Engel, just three of my favourites that spring to mind, Schmidt de Neveu has a far more limited expressive range, and lacks the former players' striking musical personalities. She draws a thin, lean tone which is spare in texture and has a tendency towards tautness. Her sound is impersonal and monochrome, lacking tonal opulence. On the plus side, her bowing technique is a match for anyone, and intonation is spot-on.

Of the two sonatas, the No. 2 in F major fares better. The Op. 38 lacks involvement, and I felt that the players were reading it through cold. They seem more at home and familiar with Op. 99, and imbue it with greater fire and passion. It’s paced well, with dynamics and phrasing judiciously chosen. Both sonatas are in more than acceptable sound, and the balance between the two instrumentalists does not favour one over the other.

These superb transfers and re-masterings are taken from a French BAM LP (LD 063). Booklet notes are provided, which offer biographical portraits of the artists. It is commendable that Forgotten Records are helping raise the profile of this long-forgotten cellist but, personally, Annlies Schmidt de Neveu’s playing doesn’t really float my boat.
 
Stephen Greenbank
 


 

 



Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and keep us afloat

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

Eloquence recordings
All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews

 

Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

December
(short month)


Orphic Moments


Metamorphoses Books I & II

November


Donizetti - Le Convenienze ed Inconvenienze Teatrali


Chamber Symphonies 2 & 4


French Cello Concertos

 

October


Shostakovich