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  • Russian Music for Cello & Piano (featuring Wendy Warner and Irina Nuzova)
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Russian Music for Cello & Piano (featuring Wendy Warner and Irina Nuzova)


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Audio CD, August 31, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The WarnerNuzova duo cellist Wendy Warner and pianist Irina Nuzova makes its recording debut with five late-Romantic Russian works on an album dedicated to the memory of one of Warner's mentors, the illustrious Russian cellist, composer, and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich (1927 2007). Fittingly, two of the pieces were originally written for Rostropovich: Nikolai Miaskovsky's rarely heard Sonata No. 2 in A Minor for Cello and Piano, Op. 81; and Alfred Schnittke's Baroque-inspired Musica nostalgica, for violoncello and piano. This is the first American recording of Miaskovsky's mellifluous Sonata No. 2, a work that's rarely performed outside of Russia. Alexander Scriabin's Etude Op. 8, No. 11, is a beautiful encore piece brimming with chromatic harmonies; Sergei Prokofiev's Adagio from Ten Pieces from Cinderella, Op. 97b, is based on a duet from his ballet; and Sergei Rachmaninov's Sonata in G Minor for Cello and Piano, Op. 19, is a riveting four-movement work from the same period as his Second Piano Concerto.

Review

(5/5 stars) - Classic. This duo of Russian pianist Irina Nuzova and American cellist Wendy Warner beautifully pargade a stimulating cross-section of works by beloved 20th century Russian composers Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff, and Scriabin and modern cats Miaskovsky and Schnittke. As performed by this twosome, these pieces have certain commonalities - deep, rapturous emotional expression that avoids schmaltziness and technique for the sake of etc. Warner's fluid, amber-hued cello is one of the most plaintively poetic sounds this writer has heard all year and Nuzova's style is stark, lyrical, and rhythm-bound. -- Icon Magazine, Mark Keresman, August 2010

Chicago cellist Wendy Warner plays with a rich tone and spot-on intonation as well as a perfect understanding of the subtle and not-so-subtle stylistic differences that inform this music of different eras, different esthetics. Her partner, Moscow-born and American-educated Irina Nuzova, is in full accord with Warner, whether supplying the ripe chords of the Scriabin or the intricate passagework of the Rachmaninoff. -- Audiophile Audition, Lee Passarella, August 2010

The performing duet of Wendy Warner on cello and Irina Nuzova on piano play as all good partnerships should, as one. In their case, it's almost as if one performer were playing both instruments, they are so attuned to one another's feeling and responses. The two women, who have been performing together as the WarnerNuzova cello and piano duo since 2008, play with style, with grace, with refinement, and with deep emotional attachment, yet always placing the music above any showmanship on their part. Most important, however, they appear to reach into the heart of this heart-wrenching music and convey its inner spirit with not only clarity and precision but with ultimate passion. They are consummate artists. -- Classical Candor, John J. Puccio, August 2010

They [Wendy Warner and Irina Nuzova] revel in the score's riches, Warner drawing a tone of great depth and vibrancy from her cello, while Nuzova matches her partner with luxuriantly resonant sound across her piano's full range. -- Fanfare Magazine, Jerry Dubins, August 2010

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Cello Sonata No. 2 in A Minor, Op. 81: I. Allegro moderatoWarnerNuzova Duo 9:41Album Only
listen  2. Cello Sonata No. 2 in A Minor, Op. 81: II. Andante cantabileWarnerNuzova Duo 7:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Cello Sonata No. 2 in A Minor, Op. 81: III. Allegro con spiritoWarnerNuzova Duo 5:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. 12 Etudes, Op. 8: No. 11 in B-Flat Minor (arr. for cello and piano)WarnerNuzova Duo 4:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Musica nostalgicaWarnerNuzova Duo 3:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Adagio, Op. 97bis (from Cinderella, Op. 87)WarnerNuzova Duo 3:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Cello Sonata in G Minor, Op. 19: I. Lento - Allegro moderatoWarnerNuzova Duo10:38Album Only
listen  8. Cello Sonata in G Minor, Op. 19: II. Allegro scherzandoWarnerNuzova Duo 6:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Cello Sonata in G Minor, Op. 19: III. AndanteWarnerNuzova Duo 5:58$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Cello Sonata in G Minor, Op. 19: IV. Allegro mossoWarnerNuzova Duo10:37Album Only

Product Details

  • Performer: Wendy Warner, Irina Nuzova
  • Composer: Nikolai Miaskovsky, Sergei Prokofiev, Alexander Scriabin, Sergei Rachmaninov, Alfred Schnittke
  • Audio CD (August 31, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Cedille Records
  • ASIN: B003T68VKI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,710 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

I love all kinds of music and this cd is very nice.
Dottie M. Coppock
It's simply a gorgeous and moving piece of music that has never before been recorded on American soil by an American artist by an American label.
Alan A. Elsner
This is cello music at its finest; rich and emotional interpretations of the compositions, played by an incredibly skilled cellist.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Alan A. Elsner VINE VOICE on September 5, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I'm generally suspicious of national stereotypes but this new CD recording of cello and piano works by Russian composers illuminates and gives life to the concept known as the "Russian soul." The recording by Chicago-based Cedille Records brings together cellist Wendy Warner and pianist Irina Nuzova in a collection by Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, Scriabin and Schnittke. But it's the opening work by a composer I had never heard of, Nikolai Miaskovsky (1881-1950) that was the real headliner for me.

Miaskovsky, who served on the faculty of the Moscow Conservatory from 1921 until his death, composed 27 symphonies, however he never won the fame of his contemporaries, Rachmaninov, Prokofiev and Shostakovich. His work is little performed today. But from the first notes of his Sonata No. 2 for Cello and Piano, Op 81, which opens this CD, one is struck by the lyrical beauty and deep melancholy of the piece which seems to express something quintessentially Russian. It's simply a gorgeous and moving piece of music that has never before been recorded on American soil by an American artist by an American label. How exciting to discover a new landmark of late Russian romanticism, which alone is worth the price of this recording!

The very useful program notes which accompany this CD includes an essay by the pianist, Nuzova who grew up in Russia but moved to the United States as a teenager to escape anti-Semitism. The sonata, she says, has a pervasive, nostalgic quality that is subtle and subdued in its expression. Nuzova says the music reminds her of a poem by Konstantin Balmont (1867-1942) called "Wordlessness" and she includes an English translation.

Let me just quotes one stanza:

"The reeds are unstirring, the sedge doesnn't quiver.
Deep quiet.
Read more ›
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Rose Red on September 14, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Having recently been introduced to classical music, a friend gave me this CD as a gift while on vacation. I listened and re-listened to this CD as I drove across country. I found myself feeling so many emotions, that at one point I pulled over and just allowed the music to overcome my senses. I am a novice when it comes to classical, but that does not intimidate me. If music can touch the soul, Warner and Nuzova's performance of Cello Sonata No. 2 in A minor, Op. 81: I. Allegro moderato, reached in to mine and gave it life. There are so many wonderful works on this CD, including Musica nostalgica, I highly recommend it.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Paul E. Richardson VINE VOICE on October 24, 2010
Format: Audio CD
American cellist Wendy Warner and Russian pianist Irina Nuzova, who have been performing together for a few years as the WarnerNuzova duo, present a warm, and satisfying recording in this collection of works by Miaskovsky, Prokofiev, Scriabin, Schnittke and Rachmaninov. Cedille specializes in recordings of music that is rarely performed in public, but should be, by artists that are not widely known, but should be. The sound quality on this disc is simply superb, and there is a line of grace and sweet melancholy running through every piece, as one would expect on a cello collection that explores the Russian soul.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By GEORGE RANNIE on January 27, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This very beautiful Cedille label (out if Chicago, IL) recording features works for cello and piano by Scrabin, Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, and, unknown to me, works by Miaskovsky and Scnittke. All the works are very late romantic Russian compositions that are played brilliantly by Wendy Warner on cello and by Irna Nuzova on the piano. Those two young women invest all of the works with technical brilliance and beautiful tone.

Although the compositions by the rather familiar composers (such as the Rachmaninov Sonata in G minor for cello and piano) are performed wonderfully, the compositions by the unknown, to me, composers, Nikoli Miaskovsky and Alfred Scnittke are really what make this album so very appealing to me. The aforesaid composers are late Russian romantic composers that studied composition in Russia. Their two works (Miakovsky's cello sonata in a minor and Schnittke's Musica Nostalgia) capture, to me, the very "spirit" of romantic Russia because they are filled with beautiful and haunting melodies and full bodied rhythms at least as played by these two performers on this very fine disc. It truly is a wonderful recording that I enjoyed very much. The recorded sound is very good too
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TomCZorn on May 10, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The four compositions presented here are four of the best one might select for a cello/piano duet. There are no harsh sounds, the transitions are "smooth as silk," and the interpretations are among the best I've heard. I strongly recommend this pair of excellent young musicians to you, and hope they continue to perform as well together as they do on this recording. Highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 10, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This is cello music at its finest; rich and emotional interpretations of the compositions, played by an incredibly skilled cellist.
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Russian Music for Cello & Piano (featuring Wendy Warner and Irina Nuzova)
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