Russian Last Romantics
Format: COMPACT DISC
Firma Melodiya presents the second album from the Two Pianos Originals project recorded by the piano duo of Ludmila Berlinskaya and Arthur Ancelle. The duo began to perform together in 2011 and have won the hearts of listeners in Russia, France, Switzerland and other countries. The duo’s first joint album was highly acclaimed by BBC Music Magazine. The artists’ subsequent releases on Melodiya received praises from the press and a series of prestigious prizes such as the editorial prize of the British magazine Gramophone, the Album of the Year of the French newspaper Le Monde and the Maestro Pianiste award. The musicians’ collaboration with Russia’s biggest record label started in 2014 when their release with Prokofiev’s music became the first new Melodiya release in twenty-five years. Unlike the previous recordings, the Two Pianos Originals is a project in which Berlinskaya and Ancelle turn to original works for two pianos rather than their transcriptions. If the first release of the project, Belle Époque, was dedicated to French music of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this time the listeners will meet with Russian romanticists of the first half of the twentieth century. Rachmaninoff, Glazunov and Medtner – each of them had his own way of reflecting the sunset light of late romanticism in his music. If the bright sonorousness of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Suite No. 2 written at the peak of the composer’s creative powers is well known to the public, Alexander Glazunov’s large-scale Fantasy composed in the midst of the Civil War, just like Nikolai Medtner’s late opus, which emerged during World War II, is much less known. However, all three compositions are masterpieces of musical art and combine a virtuosic concerto style, the highest mastery of composition, the composers’ individuality and a pronounced Russian character of the music.