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

Search MusicWeb Here


International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger

Some items
to consider


tenor and baritone

A very fine achievement

Complete ballet

Orchestral Music

music that will please greatly

Captivating scores

Symphonies - Philippe Jordan
A pleasure to see and hear

vital imagination

A harum-scarum springboard

Always expect the unexpected

Plain text for smartphones & printers

Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sheva £2 off
Sheva Contemporary
Sterling 10% off
Toccata Classics

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

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


Support us financially by purchasing
this disc through MusicWeb
for £7.50 postage paid world-wide.

Russian Cello Sonatas
Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953)
Chout; The Tale of the Buffoon suite, Op.21a (1921) arranged by Roman Sapozhnikov [8:32]
Boris TCHAIKOVSKY (1925-1996)
Cello Sonata in E minor [23:32] ¹
Sergei CHEBOTAREV (b.1949)
Cello Sonata in A minor (c 1982) [18:55]
Yuri SHAPORIN (1887-1966)
Five Pieces: Scherzo in A minor, Op.25 No.5 (1956) [1:47]
Alfred SCHNITTKE (1934-1998)
Cello Sonata No.1 (1978) [19:40]
Rodion SHCHEDRIN (b.1932)
Pieces, Op.20: Imitating Albéniz (1952) [4:35]
Marina Tarasova (cello)
Irina Kandinsky (piano)
Boris Tchaikovsky (piano) (Tchaikovsky)
rec. 2013, no locations

This selection of sonatas leads with works by Boris Tchaikovsky, Sergei Chebotarev and Schnittke and also includes other pieces for cello and piano. It pays tribute to Marina Tarasova whose fine recordings have graced the catalogues for many years.
For Boris Tchaikovsky’s sonata she has the significant cachet of the composer as her piano collaborator. His piano writing offers an involved, hectic running commentary over which the cello’s buzzy, repetitive lines provide a strong contrast. Urgent and restless though this is, there is a strong release in the slow panel, a melancholy and deeply expressive Largo which evolves into an Allegro finale in which things are coalesced into more than a mere veneer of overcoming. This is a work that breeds on contrast and conjunction and is realised with powerful control by both musicians. Chebotarev is a much younger composer than Tchaikovsky - he was born in the year that the latter graduated from the Moscow Conservatory - and he studied with Kabalevsky. The Sonata was first performed at the 1982 International Tchaikovsky Competition, at which event, incidentally, Tarasova was a competitor. It’s cast in the three standard movements and is an edgy, nasal sort of work that cultivates angry-sounding glissandi and urgent panegyric alongside some windswept harmonies and piano scurry. It’s hardly ingratiating, therefore, but preserves an excitingly nervy, tensile finale after a slow movement in which the cellist is unable to keep the music’s intensity wholly at bay.
The other Sonata is the best known, Schnittke’s 1978 First. This brooding and sometimes combative piece has been recorded a number of times but Tarasova is alive to its rhetoric and to its very particular stance. She plays with considerable commitment and as she shows elsewhere she’s not afraid to turn her tone acidic in the interests of maintaining drama and, indeed, meaning. Nor does she stint those oases of neo-Romanticism that Schnittke embeds in the sonata. Shchedrin’s saucy Imitating Albéniz derives from his 1952 Op.20 Suite and gives the cellist plenty of opportunities to explore Iberian stylistic flair. Shaprorin’s Scherzo is a kind of cellistic Flight of the Bumble Bee. Rostropovich liked the Op.25 set and I feel Tarasova does too - at least this particular one. Prokofiev’s suite from Chout is heard in the arrangement by Roman Sapozhnikov and receives another strongly characterised performance. Her tone is powerful and she gets the glissandi in the fourth panel just right.
Irina Kandinsky is Tarasova’s fine colleague and this recording offers a useful slice of repertoire, very competitively priced.
Jonathan Woolf