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David W Moore
American Record Guide, January 2011

Anosov is a young Moscow cellist who plays with generally good taste and virtuosity. His interpretations are smooth and musically phrased in a low-keyed but exciting way. …these are effective performances.

To read the complete review, please visit American Record Guide online.



John Sheppard
MusicWeb International, October 2010

Bargain of the Month

The days of Crystal Palace Messiahs and monster orchestras playing the Brandenburgs have long since gone, and an historically informed approach is expected of present day performers. Sometimes there seems even to be an element of competition as to who can produce the most outlandish performance based on previously unused evidence or theories. The present disc has gone in quite the opposite direction, and presents these Sonatas in the edition produced by the Italian cello virtuoso Alfredo Piatti (1822–1901) in the 1870s—in other words, the form in which they used most commonly to be heard until relatively recently.

I started listening fully expecting to disapprove, but almost immediately I was won over by the sheer musicianship of both the arrangements and the performances. The Sonatas were originally published for cello and bass continuo. They have been recorded in that form using a variety of instruments—Naxos has an excellent version of some of them using fortepiano as continuo instrument—but always the two lines of the original published version are clearly audible as the basis of the performance. Piatti however did not stop at adding chords and occasional imitative lines to Boccherini’s bass. Certainly the published bass part is there, albeit sometimes in different octaves, with elaborations and sometimes simplification of the original, but in addition there is a whole host of imitations using the whole compass of the piano. The result is that whilst the cello remains dominant the two instruments are much more equal partners. In lesser hands this could have been a disaster, and indeed there are plenty of examples of nineteenth century editions of baroque and classical works which wholly change the character of the work, thickening the texture and obscuring the simpler lines of the original. That is not the case here. Piatti was certainly generous as well as extremely imaginative in what he gives the pianist to do, and he adds yet further difficulties to an already difficult cello part full of double stops and very high passages. This could sound hectic or over-busy, but as played here it is pure delight from beginning to end. Given that Piatti was encouraged by such composers as Liszt, Mendelssohn and Sullivan this should perhaps be no great surprise.

I had not heard of Fedor Amosov before. He studied with an array of fellow-Russian cellists, including Rostropovich, and has won several competitions. He plays with great panache, delicacy when that is called for, and has an enviable range of tone colours. Above all he is responsive to the sheer charm and melodious qualities of the music. The Taiwanese pianist Jen-Ru Sun was also previously unknown to me, but I am very pleased to have heard her here playing as an equal partner and making the most of the opportunities that Boccherini—and, even more, Piatti—provides. With a clear recording and good leaflet notes this has been for me an exceptionally and unexpectedly enjoyable disc which I hope will be tried even by those to whom historically informed performance is normally a sine qua non when choosing recordings.




John Sheppard
MusicWeb International, October 2010

The days of Crystal Palace Messiahs and monster orchestras playing the Brandenburgs have long since gone, and an historically informed approach is expected of present day performers. Sometimes there seems even to be an element of competition as to who can produce the most outlandish performance based on previously unused evidence or theories. The present disc has gone in quite the opposite direction, and presents these Sonatas in the edition produced by the Italian cello virtuoso Alfredo Piatti (1822–1901) in the 1870s—in other words, the form in which they used most commonly to be heard until relatively recently.

I started listening fully expecting to disapprove, but almost immediately I was won over by the sheer musicianship of both the arrangements and the performances. The Sonatas were originally published for cello and bass continuo. They have been recorded in that form using a variety of instruments—Naxos has an excellent version of some of them using fortepiano as continuo instrument—but always the two lines of the original published version are clearly audible as the basis of the performance. Piatti however did not stop at adding chords and occasional imitative lines to Boccherini’s bass. Certainly the published bass part is there, albeit sometimes in different octaves, with elaborations and sometimes simplification of the original, but in addition there is a whole host of imitations using the whole compass of the piano. The result is that whilst the cello remains dominant the two instruments are much more equal partners. In lesser hands this could have been a disaster, and indeed there are plenty of examples of nineteenth century editions of baroque and classical works which wholly change the character of the work, thickening the texture and obscuring the simpler lines of the original. That is not the case here. Piatti was certainly generous as well as extremely imaginative in what he gives the pianist to do, and he adds yet further difficulties to an already difficult cello part full of double stops and very high passages. This could sound hectic or over-busy, but as played here it is pure delight from beginning to end. Given that Piatti was encouraged by such composers as Liszt, Mendelssohn and Sullivan this should perhaps be no great surprise.

I had not heard of Fedor Amosov before. He studied with an array of fellow-Russian cellists, including Rostropovich, and has won several competitions. He plays with great panache, delicacy when that is called for, and has an enviable range of tone colours. Above all he is responsive to the sheer charm and melodious qualities of the music. The Taiwanese pianist Jen-Ru Sun was also previously unknown to me, but I am very pleased to have heard her here playing as an equal partner and making the most of the opportunities that Boccherini—and, even more, Piatti—provides. With a clear recording and good leaflet notes this has been for me an exceptionally and unexpectedly enjoyable disc which I hope will be tried even by those to whom historically informed performance is normally a sine qua non when choosing recordings.



Giv Cornfield
The New Recordings, Cliffs Classics, August 2010

Another very old friend here: in 1962, we made the first North American recording of this music, with Belgian 'cellist Charles Houdret (founder of the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition in Brussels, where David Oistrakh won first prize, 'way back when). The pianist was Monique Marcil. I'm not sure that we used the Piatti arrangements, because in some spots the music differed from the one we made. Perhaps these are the performers' own cadenzas.

This is great music: lots of variety and styles that give the cellist opportunities to show off. On the whole, Amosov's tempi are brisk, yet this recording is nearly 8 minutes longer than the old Baroque Records LP (ORION LAN0194). Recorded quality, Intonation and style are flawless, and pianist Jen-Ru Sun is easily up to the challenge.



David Denton
David's Review Corner, August 2010

On his death in 1805, Luigi Boccherini left an extensive catalogue of works including 32 sonatas for cello and bass continuo, six later arranged for cello and piano by the Italian cellist, Alfredo Piatti. Born in 1743, and the son of a cellist, he was sent to Rome at the age of 14 to study the instrument and was soon travelling as a soloist. He eventually settled in Madrid working as a composer and a member of the Royal Court. But life from there went slowly downhill, the death of his patron, his first wife, his children and his second wife, left him in a poor mental state, and though he enjoyed a small pension from the King of Spain, he died in some degree of poverty. The six sonatas were published in London in 1771, and as was customary at the time they appeared in many guises, the most popular being one for violin and continuo. Piatti’s is, however, a fundamental shift of texture and needed an element of composition to create a piano part. Though varied by the position of the slow movement, they are all conventional in shape and are quite short. Thematically they aim to please the listener, and at the same time offer challenges to interest a virtuoso cellist, the finale of the Second being a finger-knotting experience.  It is played by the young Russian-born Fedor Amosov and the Taiwanese pianist, Jen-Ru Sun. Amosov deals admirably with passages of tricky intonation and produces an elegant singing tone for slow movements. The reverberant American recording much enlarges the volume of the cello’s lower strings, but balance between instruments is good.






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7:54:03 AM, 25 April 2014
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