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Robert Maxham
Fanfare, May 2020

Violinist Emmanuele Baldini and pianist Karin Fernandes contribute a selection of three Romantic violin sonatas to Naxos’s series devoted to the music of Brazil, including Leopoldo Miguez’s Violin Sonata and two works in the genre composed by Glauco Velásquez, all three late Romantic effusions conceived in a highly nuanced and harmonically complex, though generally accessible musical language. © 2020 Fanfare Read complete review



Bob McQuiston
Classical Lost and Found, January 2020

Highpoints include the First Sonata’s closing “Agitato” [T-3], which anticipates the impressionism of Debussy (1862-1918) and even Ravel (1875-1937). As for the Second, it has a spellbinding, middle “Adagio” [T-9] and compelling “Finale” [T-10].

Internationally acclaimed, Italian violinist-conductor Emmanuele Baldini and award-winning, Brazilian pianist Karin Fernandes deliver technically accomplished, passionate accounts of these little-known works. Both artists give careful attention to dynamics, phrasing and rhythmic detail, thereby bringing out all the delicate nuances that abound in this music. © 2020 Classical Lost and Found Read complete review



Ned Kellenberger
American Record Guide, January 2020

The huge orchestral piano playing is refreshing, dwarfing the violin sometimes, as it should. Interweaving lines are passed off artfully between the instruments. There is a steady graininess to the violin sound. … This is a fine reading and brilliant playing.

For anyone looking for new pieces in the late romantic style, this is very good playing and a serious rendering of composers who take their craft seriously. Huge culminations where the limits of the instrument are tested—yet retain their beauty—set this apart. © 2020 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Terry Robbins
The WholeNote, December 2019

Baldini’s playing is radiant and idiomatic, with Fernandes particularly brilliant in the demanding piano writing in the Miguez sonata. © 2019 The WholeNote



Rob Barnett
MusicWeb International, October 2019

The disc concludes with Velasquez’s Second Sonata. It was completed when the composer was only 27 and had just three more years to live. It again plunges and swings its way through three movements in a Grieg-like style.

The recording and the playing of Baldini and Fernandes and are quite exemplary. © 2019 MusicWeb International Read complete review




Rafael de Acha
Rafael’s Music Notes, September 2019

Violinist Emmanuele Baldini and pianist Karin Fernandes master all three compositions, playing throughout with panache and faultless technical command. Ulrich Schneider is the fine producer and engineer for this worthy project. © 2019 Rafael's Music Notes Read complete review



Classical Music, September 2019

Over the next five years, Naxos can look forward to adding a comprehensive series of Brazilian music to its books; a tangible legacy for de Sá and his colleagues and one that promises to widen awareness of this intriguing repertoire. © 2019 Classical Music



David Denton
David's Review Corner, September 2019

For the second disc in Naxos’s ‘The Music of Brazil’ we move to instrumental scores composed at the turn of the century when classical music in Europe was in turmoil. In the backdrop to the lives of the composers, Brazil plays a very differing part, the earliest music here coming from Leopoldo Miguez. Born in 1850, his compositional studies took him to France, and it was there that he experienced the influences Wagner was already exerting. His return to Brazil in 1885—for the second time—was marked by the completion of his Violin Sonata, a powerful score in the conventional four movements, the scherzo coming third. It could well have come in direct lineage of Cesar Franck, the piano part being the driving force with the violin often adding the decoration. That is true of the slow movement and finale where the keyboard has the most interesting thematic material. Certainly this is a very fine score worthy of a place in the standard violin repertoire.

The notes with the disc elaborate on the birth of Glauco Velasquez in Italy, and his coming, as a child, to Brazil where he received an education in composition. If I relate Miguez to Franck, then Velasquez had moved to the era of Ravel and Debussy, the language of his two short Violin Sonatas having a seductive beauty. They were completed before his untimely death aged thirty, and we can only speculate what could have been. Emmanuele Baldini was also born in Italy, but his globe-trotting career as a violin soloist has created a particularly close relationship with Brazil. His piano partner is the multi-award winning Karin Fernandes, who judiciously balances the fulsome keyboard writing throughout. The duo enjoy a fine recording, this lovely disc I urge you to hear. © 2019 David’s Review Corner





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