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Göran Forsling
MusicWeb International, August 2015

[This] recording from the Konzerthaus in Freiburg leaves little to be wished of clarity and dynamics. The orchestra is not in the Berlin Philharmonic class, but Naxos have a nose for finding orchestras…and there is first-class playing in all departments. The young Dutch conductor Pieter-Jelle de Boer is also an accomplished pianist and composer and he has a fine ear for the sonorities of this music. The Beijing-born soloist Tianwa Yang…has all the qualities that make a great musician. Her playing here is enough bait for acquiring this disc, but an even stronger lure is the opportunity to have both the Castelnuovo-Tedesco concertos. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Paul Corfield Godfrey
MusicWeb International, July 2015

The performances, excellently played by both soloist and orchestra, need not fear invidious comparisons with Heifetz; and they are much better recorded, with a more natural perspective. The chance to hear both of the Castelnuovo-Tedesco concertos on a single disc makes an irresistible bargain for those who wish to explore the output of a composer whose music consists of much more than the various guitar pieces for which he is generally known. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Lawrence Hansen
American Record Guide, July 2015

Wow! I am figuratively knocked off my feet!

This is bold, vivid, exciting music… I couldn’t stop playing this. © 2015 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Lynn René Bayley
Fanfare, July 2015

…I was riveted by the playing of Tianwa Yang. Here is a young woman who is already a mature artist and not just a performing machine. Her tone is sweet and well modulated throughout its range; her technique is of the sort that is always dependable yet never draws attention to itself, and she plays with a muscular strength that brings nobility to every note and line. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review

Brian Wigman
Classical Net, June 2015

Tianwa Yang won praise for her coupling of Mendelssohn’s concertos for [Naxos], and here she pads her resume with a committed and exciting performance.

…she plays magnificently and is also well recorded. © 2015 Classical Net Read complete review

Remy Frank
Pizzicato, June 2015

It is good that such a gifted violinist as Tianwa Yang is taking care of Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s concertos. She produces wonders of brilliant playing and, together with Pieter-Jelle de Boer, she tastefully gives the music the right character and the full message. © 2015 Pizzicato

Grego Applegate Edwards
Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, April 2015

The performances leave nothing to be desired. Both works have considerable thematic interest and a grand sweeping tonality that is post-romantic perhaps, but filled with expressiveness. Tianwa Yang has a beautifully heroic, lyric tone and handles the sometimes difficult solo parts with world-class adroitness. © 2015 Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review Read complete review

Steven A. Kennedy
Cinemusical, April 2015

Tianwa Yang’s performance captures the lyrical qualities of this music quite well with all the little ornamental touches adding to the gorgeous quality of the music. Her technique in the faster sections is remarkable, and the high-end intonation is captivating. She certainly makes a convincing case for both works and her performance of the second concerto is rather marvelous and worthy of high praise! This is an excellent way to hear two wonderful works by one of the lesser-appreciated 20th-Century masters. © 2015 Cinemusical Read complete review

Ivan Moody
Gramophone, April 2015

The Second Violin Concerto, I profeti, was written for Heifetz after he had performed the Concerto italiano. Its glittering, singing lines certainly bring a resonant response both from soloist Tianwa Yang and the SWR Symphony Orchestra. A work that needs to be brought back into the repertoire. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Barry Forshaw
Classical CD Choice, March 2015

Almost single-handedly, the Naxos label has rescued the composer Castelnuovo-Tedesco from obscurity in terms of recorded repertoire. There was a time when the composer’s charming guitar concertos were all that was available, but now we can see that he was a musician of considerable range, thanks to the Naxos program. If the Concerto Italiano is not as immediately appealing as the Shakespearean overtures recorded elsewhere, it is still a piece full of the colour and invention we now expect from the composer, and it is performed with suitable affection here. Castelnuovo-Tedesco considered the 1924 Concerto Italiano to be his first truly symphonic venture. This tuneful, fresh and transparently scored concerto receives its world première recording from violinist Tianwa Yang, supported by the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden Baden und Freiburg under Pieter-Jelle de Boer. © 2015 Classical CD Choice

Bob McQuiston
Classical Lost and Found, February 2015

Up-and-coming, award winning violinist Tianwa Yang delivers technically flawless, stunning performances of these works…[and] as far as the second is concerned her youthful vigor gives it an edge over what’s been out there.

That’s all the more true considering the enthusiastic support she gets from Dutch conductor Pieter-Jelle de Boer at the helm of the SWR Symphony Orchestra of Baden-Baden and Freiburg, Germany. © 2015 Classical Lost and Found Read complete review

Tim Ashley
The Guardian, February 2015

Chinese violinist Tianwa Yang confirms her growing reputation with playing of great prowess…There are stylish contributions, too, from the Baden-Baden and Freiburg Radio Orchestra under Pieter-Jelle de Boer. © 2015 The Guardian Read complete review, February 2015

The new Naxos CD of these two concerti…offers some very well-played and often highly interesting music with which listeners are unlikely to be familiar. © 2015 Read complete review

David Hurwitz, February 2015

Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s early Concerto Italiano…[is] very enjoyable, and very Italian—in a good way. Yang plays the work very confidently; she has no technical limitations at all, and she captures the warmth of those romantic tunes with unfailing aplomb.

…Tianwa Yang plays with unflagging gusto and, in music that can turn kitschy, taste. Now is usually the time we get to say something condescending, like “She’s no Heifetz, or Perlman,” but the truth is that she doesn’t suffer at all from the comparison. She’s an excellent artist, one whose musicality and passion speak for themselves, and she can hold her own against anyone. © 2015 Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, February 2015

Listening to this disc it would be difficult to argue with those who include Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco among the most neglected composers of the 20th century. Today his name seldom appears in concert programmes, and we rely on record labels to frequent us with his colourful scores. The Concerto Italiano, which he always described as his first symphonic work, dates from 1924, and is a perfect example of the very differing sounds he conjured-up, though they were sumptuous and had their roots in an earlier period. A lengthy opening movement where the orchestra play a potent role, there is a technically demanding cadenza to excite any exhibitionist soloist. By contrast the central movement is lyrical, to lead into a fast and exciting finale with the soloist’s left hand flying around the instrument, while the orchestra offer a persistently rhythmic backdrop that propels the music forward. The great violinist, Jascha Heifetz heard the work and later performed it, requesting the composer to write a concerto for him resulting in the Second Concerto subtitled ‘I Profeti(The Prophets) using traditional Jewish melodies. Though the great man later recorded it, it certainly does not have the charisma of the earlier work and is largely quite, though it still requires considerable solo agility. Compared with Heifetz, who does his best to add a Hollywood glitz, Yang is more subtle; enjoys more orchestral input, and is willing to melt into the orchestral texture. In technical terms Yang is more than comparable, her tone more warm and rounded. On that score alone I would commend her account in preference. The SWR orchestra under the young Dutch conductor, Peter-Jelle de Boer, is excellent, and the German radio recording is outstanding. © 2015 David’s Review Corner

Richard Morrison
The Times (London), January 2015

This world premiere recording of Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s early Concerto Italiano, with the talented young violinist Tianwa Yang joined by the SWR Orchestra under Pieter-Jelle de Boer, reveals the early 20th-century Italian to be a lush, lyrical and fluent composer. © 2015 The Times (London) Read complete review

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