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Dvorák, Janácek, Martinu & Grieg

Slavonic Dance in G minor & A Major
Silent Woods Op.68 No.5, Antonín Dvorák
Pohadka (Fairy Tale), Leos Janácek
Variations on a Slovakian Theme H.378 & Sonata No. 2 for Cello and Piano H.286, Bohuslav Martinu

Tanya Prochazka, cello
Milton Schlosser, piano

Arktos 200375 (Purchase from Arktos)



Lyric Pieces, Opus 43: Haugtussa/The Mountain Maid, Opus 6;
Sonata for Cello and Piano, Opus 36 Edvard Grieg

Milton Schlosser, piano
Kathleen Lotz, soprano
Tanya Prochazka, cello


Arktos 97019

Personal meetings are fruitful for widening the range of a non-commercial website like Musical Pointers, and these CDs received are a serendipitous spin-off from talking with pianist Milton Schlosser at the recent Rzewski Festival at Trinity College of Music, London. It is an important step for a composer-pianist who has not yet been taken up by "the estabishment" when another musician records his works. Schlosser's Rzewski CD has been reviewed in our pages (I enjoyed it more than did our reviewer).

These further recordings from Augustana University College are well worth exploring; produced to highest standards by fine musicians and recording engineers - not a trace of digital cut&paste! It is noteworthy that the Department is generously supported and that proceeds of sales are ploughed back into their work.

Tanya Prochazka is as fine a cellist as most of those you may encounter, and the duo partnership with Schlosser is one born of long collaboration. He is a true chamber music pianist, no mere 'accompanist'.

In The lyrical dialect of Edvard Grieg their passionate account of the cello sonata persuaded me to reconsider my doubts about this work; they take you by the scruff of the neck and hurl you into its emotional intensity. Grieg's piano miniatures are pleasant, but I do wish he didn't so often just repeat his first ideas in an A-B-A formula without developing them. For Haugtussa you can sample Kathleen Lotz, but you should definitely consider too Flagstad's bench-mark account, which I grew up with.

No reservations about the Bohemian Woods disc; a good, balanced programme and recording with Janacek's gorgeous Fairy Tale the best known of a connoisseur's collection. Tanya Prochazka even provided the enchanting cover picture above.

(Purchase from Arktos)

© Peter Grahame Woolf