The cello sonatas heard on this Bridge album by composers Ludwig Thuille, Donald Francis Tovey, and Ernst von Dohnányi all share an unfortunate characteristic: their relative obscurity within the cello repertoire. Both Thuille and Tovey rubbed elbows with significant players in their time, Thuille with the young Richard Strauss and Tovey with Pablo Casals, for whom the Sonata for two cellos was written, but few of these two composers' works are ever performed and both are remembered now more as theoreticians and teachers. Dohnányi, on the other hand, was and still is a highly regarded Hungarian composer, and although his Op. 8 Cello Sonata doesn't find its way to the concert stage very frequently, his chamber music and Concertpiece for cello and orchestra are widely played. Each of the three sonatas was written very much in the late-Romantic German vernacular, with dense, lush melodies and fervent interaction between two instruments. What may be lacking and thus at least partially responsible for their infrequent performance is consistently interesting and well-developed melodic material sufficient to keep a listener's attention. Cellist Marcy Rosen and colleagues, however, do everything they can with the material they're given. Rosen's playing in particular is technically rock solid and musically well informed. Her tone is deep and warm, a perfect choice for these Brahmsian compositions.
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AllMusic Review by Mike D. Brownell
|Sonata for cello & piano, Op. 22|
|Sonata for 2 cellos in G major|
|Sonata for cello & piano in B flat major, Op. 8|