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Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

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Boris TCHAIKOVSKY (1925-1996)
Piano Trio (1953) 26.03 *
String Quartet No. 6 (1976) 13.34 **
Sextet (wind instruments and harp) (1990) 13.13 ***

* composer (piano); Viktor Pikaizen (violin); Evgeni Altman (cello) rec 1960
** Andrei Korsakov (violin); Margarita Peletsis (violin); Aleksander Petrov (viola); Andrei Demin (cello) rec 1982
*** Leonid Lebedev (flute); Olga Tomilova (oboe); Vladimir Permyakov (clarinet); Vyacheslav Podkopaev (bassoon); Viktor Galkin (horn); Emilia Moskvitina (harp) rec 1998
 BOHEME Classical CDBMR 907084 [56.53]
Amazon USA

Boris was a Muscovite who studied with the great names of Soviet music: Lev Oborin (piano), Shebalin, Shostakovich and Miaskovsky.

The recording of the Trio could hardly be more authoritative. Its zest is irrepressible, Waltonian, inevitably reflecting typical Shostakovich ticks and tricks and profoundly sorrowing in the baroque style adagio, In the single movement Quartet of 23 years later there is less of a linguistic jolt than you might expect. The harmony is still spare and salty but he remains true to romance in a sincerely affecting largamente. This is one of the treasures of twentieth century musical literature and should be heard by anyone who follows the Shostakovich or Britten quartets. The 1990 sextet is in three successively shorter movements the fourth being a rounded but ambiguous Largo. This is a sparky and sharp little work - perhaps with a little in common with the Nielsen quintet and with the Symphonies of Wind Instruments. The harp adds a welcome further dimension.

One of the many things I really like about this disc is the lack of evasion in discographical terms though it would have been nice to see a total playing time declared. In any event recording years are given and all personnel rostered in detail.

Three very fine works you are unlikely to know. What other riches await us from the Soviet Union's prolific radio archives?

Rob Barnett

Boris Tchaikovsky website


Rob Barnett


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