All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

5

Duo Gazzana: Poulenc Walton Dallapiccola Schnittke Silvestrov

Hrayr Attarian By

Sign in to view read count
The unifying theme of Italian sisters, violinist Natascia Gazzana and pianist Raffaella Gazzana's second release is a celebration of neoclassicism in modern music. The Duo Gazzana performs five 20th and 21st century compositions that, in one manner or another, draw inspiration from mostly the Baroque era.

The focal point of the album is one of composer William Walton's early gems, the seldom- heard "Toccata For Violin & Piano." A haunting reading of this sublime piece opens with Natascia's passionate strings echoing against silent pauses. Raffaella's rumbling intricate lines lead to a stimulating and cinematic dialogue. The contemplative mood is laced with melancholy, as Gazzanas' interpretation is both potently emotive yet endowed with a sophisticated maturity.

The duo's version of composer Luigi Dallapiccola 1955 "Tartiniana Seconda" is suffused with a mystical lyricism. Natascia's wistful bowing is intensely poetic while Raffaella's sparkling cascade of notes adds a touch of intrigue. Together they express with, lucid elegance, the continuum of sentiment within the music that ranges from quiet jubilation to placid ennui.

The only selection from this millennium, composer Valentin Silvestrov's "Hommage à JSB" is a serene and memorable duet. Raffaella's key strikes chime and gently shimmer while her sister's violin contributes bursts of pensive phrases. Pizzicato strings punctuate its quiet conclusion.

The work that is the least Baroque-ish is composer Francis Poulenc's ode to the murdered poet Federico Garcia Lorca "Sonata for Violin & Piano." Penned during the Second World War, this turbulent paean receives a bold yet restrained reading that is raw and honest while eschewing melodrama. Natascia's violin, on the first movement, climbs and descends with breathtaking agility the scales that Raffaella's piano constructs. The dramatic conversation that follows is imbued with quiet sorrow as well as bursts of rage. The second part has nocturnesque tranquility while the third builds momentum with sophisticated legerity to the impressive finale that has pianist's somber chords supporting the violinist's mournful song.

This stimulating and captivating program opens with Alfred Schnittke's 1971 "Suite In The Old Style." From the first, energetic prancing piano notes followed by violin's honeyed, lilting tone a lush and sensuous atmosphere is established. The Gazzanas' performance expresses every nuance in warm, pastel colors. The music glides gracefully from a whimsical dance on "Ballet" to the darkly hued, heady "Menuett" to the vibrant and organic "Fuge" and finally closing with the subtle theatricality of "Pantomime.

Duo Gazzana's sophomore session for ECM is every bit as engaging and delightful as their first and it is a superb addition to the label's uniformly excellent New Music series.

Track Listing: Schnittke: Suite In The Old Style - 1. Pastorale; Schnittke: Suite In The Old Style - 2. Ballet; Schnittke: Suite In The Old Style - 3. Menuett; Schnittke: Suite In The Old Style - 4. Fuge; Schnittke: Suite In The Old Style - 5. Pantomime; Poulenc: Sonata for Violin and Piano - 1. Allegro Con Fuoco; Poulenc: Sonata for Violin and Piano -2.Intermezzo; Poulenc: Sonata for Violin and Piano - 3. Presto Tragico; Silvestrov: Hommage À J. S. B.; Walton: Toccata For Violin & Piano; Dallapiccola: Tartiniana Seconda.

Personnel: Natascia Gazzana: violin; Raffaella Gazzana: piano.

Title: Poulenc Walton Dallapiccola Schnittke Silvestrov | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: ECM Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Live CD/LP/Track Review
Live
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: April 21, 2018
Read Humanities CD/LP/Track Review
Humanities
by David A. Orthmann
Published: April 21, 2018
Read Wild Is The Wind CD/LP/Track Review
Wild Is The Wind
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 21, 2018
Read Fairytales CD/LP/Track Review
Fairytales
by Gareth Thompson
Published: April 21, 2018
Read Origins CD/LP/Track Review
Origins
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 20, 2018
Read Bright Force CD/LP/Track Review
Bright Force
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 20, 2018
Read "Eleven" CD/LP/Track Review Eleven
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 1, 2018
Read "Woody Guthrie - The Tribute Concerts" CD/LP/Track Review Woody Guthrie - The Tribute Concerts
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 20, 2017
Read "BACHanalia" CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jerome Wilson
Published: July 25, 2017
Read "Doors" CD/LP/Track Review Doors
by John Eyles
Published: April 4, 2018
Read "Red October" CD/LP/Track Review Red October
by Daniel Barbiero
Published: April 11, 2018
Read "The Blues and I Should have a Party" CD/LP/Track Review The Blues and I Should have a Party
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 14, 2018