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John Bauman
Fanfare, February 2001

"This disc opens with the seldom-heard Variations on a Russian Theme that five composers wrote to honor the conductor Nikolai Galkin. It is an attractive theme that is wittily scored by the five. Only Sokolov took the task seriously, but all five provided a rousing work.

"Glazunov's two piano concertos retain a rather weak hold in the recorded repertoire, with three or four recordings each. Both are Romantic, rather lush, and need a strong pianist to make them memorable. I am always reminded of the wretched-sounding performance that Richter recorded nearly 50 years ago, which still remains as my choice for the first concerto. His flamboyance really makes it sound like a first-class work. The modern recording with the mother-son team of Yablonskaya-Yablonsky comes very close to Richter in most respects. There is fire and passion in Yablonskya's playing, which helps to carry both scores, while Yablonsky provides full0blooded orchestral support.

"The recorded sound is very fine, as re the notes. Naxos's bargain price is just an added incentive to buy this well-filled disc."



Geoffrey Norris
The Daily Telegraph (Australia), August 2000

"GLAZUNOV has never really enjoyed the posthumous recognition he deserves, but over the past few years Naxos has certainly been doing its bit in trying to get his music more widely known. This disc is Vol 14 in a series of his orchestral works, and brings together the two piano concertos and the Variations on a Russian Theme that Glazunov wrote in contemporaries, including Rimsky-Korsakov and Lyadov.

"These affectionate performances by Oxana Yablonskaya and the Moscow Symphony Orchestra highlight not just the technical professionalism that Glazunov could always rely upon to get him through, but also the blend of lyricism and orchestral colour that distinguish his music at its most engaging. Neither the First Concerto (1910-11) nor the Second (1917) might have the strong melodic profile of a Rachmaninov or Tchaikovsky, but they are works in the ripe Romantic tradition, with a breadth and grandeur of their own."





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