Andreas Brantelid

Chopin: Cello Sonata; Piano Trio; Grand Duo

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It is grand to hear novice players so successfully take on three of Chopin's chamber pieces, the Cello Sonata, Piano Trio, and Grand Duo for cello and piano. There have certainly been great recordings of these works in the past -- one thinks immediately of those by Mstislav Rostropovich and Jacqueline du Pré -- but the energy, enthusiasm, and sincerity that cellist Andreas Brantelid, pianist Marianna Shirinyan, and violinist Vilde Frang bring to this music more than justifies preserving their performances. Brantelid has a big but nuanced tone, an elegant but impressive technique, and an obvious affinity for the music, and he is well-matched by Shirinyan's polished technique and empathic accompaniments and Frang's easy virtuosity and lyrical interpretation. The ensemble is poised but comfortable and the interpretations are cogent and compelling. Captured in close but smooth digital sound, these performances deserve to be heard by anyone who loves this music, or great chamber music playing.

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