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Alexander Bryce
Scotland on Sunday, April 2014

…distinctive, thoughtful and inventive… © 2014 Scotland on Sunday

Jens F. Laurson
Ionarts, January 2014

Best Recordings of 2013: #6 - New Release

Ivan Karabits Concertos for Orchestra: I love thee. What imaginative, colorful creatures you are, and never pandering! Whether violent outburst or lyrical episode, everything sounds compelling, with harpsichords and Glockenspiel, clapping and whispering and all. Shostakovich meets Poulenc. The two Valentin Silvestrov pieces added are both moving musical memorials to Karabits. The Bournemouth SO plays it to the hilt; his son Kirill conducts: Rarely has nepotism sounded sweeter! © 2014 Ionarts Read complete review

Martin Anderson
Fanfare, November 2013

I approached the three concertos for orchestra by the Ukrainian composer Ivan Karabits (1945–2002)—recorded, with two pieces by Silvestrov, by his son Kirill with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra on Naxos—with my mind in its original state of white paper, and was blown away by the extraordinary command of the orchestral writing here, too. If the rest of his output is as exciting, Karabits is plainly someone whose music should be much more familiar. © 2013 Fanfare

Ronald E. Grames
Fanfare, September 2013

Silvestrov…displays here a post-modernist nostalgic romanticism. Both works are deeply touching compositions for strings written to memorialize Karabits’s passing.

The three concertos for orchestra are all premiere recordings which can be assumed authoritative…The orchestra is in superb form…Andrew Walton and Mike Clements do their usual magic in the concert hall of The Lighthouse, Poole, creating a full but detailed image of the orchestra…This is an outstanding release of music with wide potential appeal that deserves to be better known. © 2013 Fanfare Read complete review

David Nice
BBC Music Magazine, May 2013


The one work of superior imagination here belongs to Valentin Silvestrov and his Farewell Serenade dedicated a very beautiful Berceuse out of the shadows. No reservations at all…about the playing of the excellent Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. The sound, engineered by Mike Clements, is first rate. © 2013 BBC Music Magazine

Steve Arloff
MusicWeb International, April 2013

What I heard really impressed me and has sparked a burning desire to explore [Ivan Karabits’s] musical world further.

Once again Naxos has brought us works that are either world premières or are rarely heard. In this case the disc introduces the public to the work of Ivan Karabits who, on this strength should be heard on disc and in the concert hall with increasing frequency. His music is bound to delight audiences the world over. Karabits’ son Kirill directs the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra wonderfully and gets the very best from it with some fabulous orchestral colouration. This is an absolutely brilliant disc that bowled me over and I can’t wait to discover more music by these two giants of Ukrainian classical music. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review

John Warrack
Gramophone, April 2013

Among a wealth of [Ivan Karabits’s] orchestral music are the three concertos for orchestra on this disc, pieces which indicate his love of orchestral sonorities and a considerable originality and virtuosity, indeed wit, in their handling.

Certainly the music is colourful and falls easily on the ear. Kirill Karabits’s feeling for the music is clearly strong and he carries the Bournemouth players enthusiastically with him in these performances. © 2013 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Cinemusical, April 2013

The Concerto for Orchestra No. 2…opens with a burst and flurry of energy. The music moves from dissonant lines to equally stunning harmonic ideas in a more tonal language. There is some interesting contrapuntal work and tossing of motives around the orchestra. The whole work is a fascinating display of orchestral virtuoso writing at times very cinematic.

The performances here are simply stellar making a good case for each of the Karabits’ works especially. The final two Silvestrov pieces are a nice little bonus to help fill out the release. The three concertos for orchestra all are engaging pieces that will have much to reveal on repeated listening…great disc! © 2013 Cinemusical Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, March 2013

Following the Ukraine’s independence from Russia in 1991, Ivan Karabits became the country’s leading figure in the world of classical music. Sadly he was to die in 2002 at the early age of fifty-seven, but not before he had established so much in the emerging country, his achievement recognised by the ‘Peoples’ Artist of the Ukraine’ award. As a composer he had worked in most genres, the orchestral music including three symphonies and a series of concertos that reflected the influence of his mentor Rodion Shchedrin. Stylistically Karabits was to plough his own lone furrow that did not desert tonality, and if it comes from the same period as Shostakovich, that is only to place his music in a historical context. As the title suggests the works demonstrate the orchestra’s virtuosity, its members being asked to applaud their colleagues in the course of the Second Concerto. Dating from 1986, it came five years after the First Concerto which carried the subtitle, ‘Musical Gift to Kiev’. It offers a joyful twelve minutes reminding us that Karabits was a film composer of some distinction. High in impact and equally high in percussion involvement, it contrasts, in every way, with the Third Concerto entitled, ‘Lamentations’. In two movements it recalls the seven million Ukrainians who were starved to death by Stalin’s dictates on farming, and those who perished in the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant disaster. Often powerful in its expression of grief, it ends with just the orchestral piano playing a solitary lament. Karabits death drew two very beautiful and heartfelt works from his compatriot, Valentin Silvestrov, that are here appended by Ivan’s son, Kirill. He is now the principal conductor of the Bournemouth Symphony who play excellently for him throughout. Very good sound quality. © David’s Review Corner

Robert Benson, March 2013

This spectacular new Naxos issue gives the opportunity to hear three major works by Ivan…

The Naxos disk is conducted by…Kirill Karabits…The orchestra plays spectacularly for him, and the recorded sound is typical of Naxos’ best. Thank you, once again, Naxos, for another treasure! © 2013 Read complete review

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