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Catalog: PCL10279

Geniushene, Anna

A unique and imaginative collection newly recorded by a recent star of the Van Cliburn Piano Competition. Anna Geniushene’s fresh; layered; and powerful interpretations won her a worldwide following at the 2022 edition of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition; where she took Silver Medal with a stunning account of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto which the critic for Gramophone compared in its power and nuance to Van Cliburn himself. Born in Moscow; Anna Geniushene pursued graduate studies in London and now lives in Lithuania with her husband; the pianist Lukas Geniusas. In her own booklet introduction; she explains the inspiration for this quirky collection of instrumental lullabies. The Berceuse is ‘associated with tenderness; care; purest love; and the most sensitive moments in our lives.’ She dedicates the album to her two young sons. Perhaps the most celebrated Berceuse of all; by Chopin; is missing; because it was Anna Geniushene’s particular wish to find and share neglected examples of the genre; even by well-known composers. Debussy composed the Berceuse heroique during the First World War as a tribute to the soldiers on the Western Front. The Berceuse Elegiaque of Busoni is better known in its orchestral guise. The brief Berceuse by Hindemith; unpublished in his lifetime; ‘draws listeners’ attention by its utterly eloquent and typically sarcastic character; which has nothing in common with traditional lullabies.’ The sheer diversity of composers makes for a continually varied sequence. George Crumb evokes a magical night-time stillness with a minimum of notes. Mompou’s Berceuse is likewise remarkable for its distilled serenity; whereas the examples by Granados; John Field and Liszt bring comfort with more Romantically moulded melodies in the tradition of Chopin. Anna Geniushene closes the album with two Russian Berceuses; by Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky; lyrical; simple and utterly beguiling in her hands.

Price: $30.98
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