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Roger Hecht
American Record Guide, June 2000

"Aaron Avshalomoff was born in Siberia but lived in China from 1918 to 1947. Though he had almost no formal training in music, he devised a way of composing by applying Chinese melodies based on pentatonic and whole-tone scales to Western forms and ensembles. (Later he added Indian modes and his own modulations.) He followed Rimsky-Korsakoff's orchestration style, adding a great deal of percussion (some of it Chinese). The result was music of considerable beauty and novelty, often reminiscent of those Hollywood 'Chinese' scores from the 40s and 50s and of Puccini's Madama Butterfly and Turandot....

"Avshalomoff enjoyed quite a reputation in China. He wrote popular operas and orchestral works, conducted the Shanghai Symphony, and taught several Chinese composers. During the war he fell under Japanese house arrest. After his release, he moved to the US, but he was never able to craft a musical life or reputation comparable to what he enjoyed in China.

"Avshalomoff is at his best in the lovely Flute Concerto with its free-wheeling and dancing first movement and warm, resonant II....The best performance is of the Flute Concerto; for that we owe much to the beautiful tone and lyricism of American flutist Nadine Asin."

Martin Anderson
Fanfare, February 2000

"The entire recording (billed, I see, as Orchestral Works Vol. 1) is a testament to the fascination of Avshalomoff grand-pŠre with the music of China: For all that the two works here inhabit traditional Western forms, concerto and symphony, the music is saturated with the sounds of China. ... Fine performances from the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, which Marco Polo seems to keep fully occupied and whose standards have been rising considerably over the last few years. Nadine Asin makes a lovely job of the Flute Concerto, and Avshalomov fils and petit fils keep the music moving along brightly and buoyantly."

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9:59:45 PM, 31 July 2015
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