Liszt, Dohnányi, Kodály – Music for Cello & Piano
Wallfisch and York perform Liszt’s entire oeuvre for cello and piano on the first of these CDs. In every way their playing is magical, alive to every nuance and dynamic indication, and yet wearing the music’s countless and characteristically Lisztian complexities lightly enough to allow the salonesque nature of these works … to register appealingly… For once, the music notes actually set the pieces themselves in a meaningful and educative context.
Amongst these superb realizations, the inconsolable grief of La lugubre gondola … leaves an indelible impression, nobly understated yet inescapably powerful.
The second disc is given over to works by Dohnányi and Kodály, dominated by autoritative and eloquent accounts of their substantial sonatas for cello and piano.
Dohnányi Cello Sonata, op.8. This new account is exceptionally fine, with the surging and dramatic first movement delivered with power and nobility of utterance by Wallfisch. Particularly impressive is the concluding variation movement, played with surging brilliance and drama here, though, in complete contrast, it is good to hear Wallfisch and York in more overtly folk-inspired music, Dohnanyi’s winningly atmospheric Ruralia hungarica of 1924. Any more compellingly idiomatic or richly seasoned cello playing than this would be hard to contemplate!
It need hardly be added that the nimbus engineering is hugely impressive, too, bringing a seductive aural sheen to the playing of Wallfisch and York.
Michael Jameson – International Record Review
These are some very fine works fabulously played by Raphael Wallfisch and John York. The recording from Nimbus’ Wyastone Leys venue in Monmouth is clear and detailed and there are excellent notes by John York. I hope we soon have more from this terrific duo.
The Classical Reviewer See full review