View Full Version : PROKOFIEV, RACHMANINOV: Cello Sonatas - Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax - Sony - EAC-FLAC-LOG

11-10-2014, 09:56 AM
EAC-FLAC link below. This is my own rip. Complete artwork,
LOG and CUE files included. Do not share. Buy the original!
Please leave a "Like" or "Thank you" if you enjoyed this!

It was a remarkable pair of Soviet musicians that gave the 1950 premiere of Sergey Prokofiev's Sonata for
cello and piano in C major, Op. 119: pianist Sviastoslav Richter and cellist Msitislav Rostropovich. By 1949,
when he composed the sonata, Prokofiev was in the last half-decade of his life; together, the Sonata, the
Seventh Symphony (1951-1952), and the Sinfonia Concertante for cello and orchestra (1952) make a
remarkable final threesome of instrumental pieces.

Prokofiev was among those composers officially condemned for "formalism" in 1948, and it is both fascinating
and stirring to witness how successfully Prokofiev managed, in these last works, to create a music that
seems perhaps utterly conservative but which still pushes new expressive buttons in quiet ways that the
Pravda officials would surely never have been astute enough to hear. The composer of the Sonata for cello
and piano might seem a tame composer compared to, say, the composer of 1914's Scythian Suite; but he
is really just a composer who has learned subtler, more patient, and, ultimately, clearer ways to fully
speak his mind.

The sonata is in three movements: Andante grave, Moderato, and Allegro ma non troppo. True Classical
sonata-allegro form meets stunning, voluptuous melody in the opening movement. A low, unpretentious
cello solo raises the curtain; out of the piano's occasional comments grows a little tune whose steady
chordal accompaniment is soon taken over by the cello's striking pizzicato chords. Prokofiev once said
that he was no good at writing melodies. Looking at the music of his youth we might be forced to
agree; but the G major second theme of the Andante grave proves beyond any doubt what can be
learned through a lifetime of work -- it is rich, full, and exceedingly flexible.

The Moderato is a bouncing, energetic movement that dances its way towards a sublimely smooth
central episode. In the finale, Prokofiev makes little effort to hide the fact that he was steeped in the
music of Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky during his youth. He might as a young man have revolted
against that heritage, but he never escaped it, and in the Allegro ma non troppo he matches deeply
lyrical "Russian" tunefulness with an easy gracefulness worthy of Haydn, and then adds the kind of
impish rhythms and (late in the piece) virtuosic fire that will always say "Prokofiev" to us.

The common wisdom on Rachmaninov's Sonata for Cello and Piano is that it is really a piano
sonata with cello accompaniment. While this assessment may be a slight exaggeration, it cannot be
denied the piano is the dominant instrument in the work. The composer completed this sonata in
November 1901, and gave the premiere in Moscow with cellist Anatoly Brandukov, on December 2
of that year, but apparently made several alterations over the next ten days, since he wrote the date
of December 12, 1901, on the final page of the score.

The work is cast in four movements. The first is marked Lento - Allegro moderato - Moderato and
is the longest of the four, especially when the exposition repeat is observed. It begins with a slow
introduction in which the piano presents a six-note theme that at first appears insignificant, but in
fact plays a key role throughout. The tempo picks up and the cello presents a passionate, beautiful
theme. A slower, somewhat more wistful melody follows, after which comes the stormy development
section. The reprise ensues and the movement ends in typical Rachmaninovian fashion: the tempo
speeds up as thematic morsels appear in a race to the finish, the piano crowning the coda with
three resolute chords.

The second movement, marked Allegro scherzando, begins with piano writing reminiscent of the
faster and more sinister passages in the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. The cello presents a
rhythmic idea in the opening moments of marginal interest. Two other themes are also presented,
the latter of which is quite beautiful and recalls the mood of much of the slow music in the Second
and Third Piano Concertos, especially in the piano writing.

The third movement is viewed by many as the strongest of the four. Marked Andante, it begins
on the piano with a lovely theme of intimate and passionate character. After the cello enters, the
material expands much the way the melody does in the second movement of the Second Piano
Concerto. A powerful climax is reached, and the third movement ends softly.

The finale starts off with a robust theme on the cello that rather lacks the individual stamp of the
composer. Still, the music is bright and vivacious and has strong appeal. There follows a second
subject more in the Rachmaninovian vein, full of passion and beauty and seeming to soar to the
heavens. The two themes reappear throughout, the composer deftly manipulating their interplay.
In the beginning of the coda, the cello recalls the piano's opening (six-note) theme from the
first movement, and then the work ends brilliantly.

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Music Composed by
Sergei Prokofiev
Sergei Rachminanov

Played by
Yo-Yo Ma (cello)
Emanuel Ax (piano)

"I came to this recording a bit reluctantly, wishing that I might first find a gem of a recording
from some other artists. These two have been showered with so many accolades that they don't
need another positive review.

My first exposure to the Rachmaninov Cello Sonata was through a recording by Michael Grebanier
and Janet Guggenheim, and it was entirely serviceable, but I fell in love with this piece when I
later heard a recording by Nancy Green and Fred Moyer (Moyer has often been a guide for me into
new music to love). Thus went I on a journey to find the ultimate performance of this piece. I've
now heard many recordings and, in the end, I believe this one will be left standing. I still have a
special appreciation for some other recordings but Ma and Ax combine polish, incomparable
virtuosity, passion and a penetrating musicality. If you have to choose one recording, you won't
go wrong with this one.

I will add that the Prokofiev Sonata became appealing to me through this recording. I had
heard it live and in another recording coupled with the Rachmaninov Cello Sonata, but only
this recording made the piece come alive for me.

Highly recommended."
Amazon Reviewer

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DOWNLOAD LINK - [Only registered and activated users can see links]!X1wXka7R!WJwZvJXCkrXXKbip9xVQaPSEMEJOe-cMz331Mus3lU0

Source: Sony Classical CD, 1991 (my rip!)
Format: FLAC(RAR), DDD Stereo, Level: -5
File Size: 243 MB (incl. artwork, booklet, log & cue)

Enjoy! Don't share! Buy the origina! Please leave a "Like" or "Thank you" if you enjoyed this! :)

11-10-2014, 01:17 PM
thanks wimpel

11-10-2014, 07:41 PM
Sensational -- thanks!

11-12-2014, 07:13 AM
Thank you, wimpel!

11-12-2014, 07:49 PM

11-12-2014, 08:01 PM
Thank you so much! Great choice as always :)

11-14-2014, 04:06 AM
Thank you share!

10-16-2016, 01:41 AM
a reupload of this would be fabulous!

10-16-2016, 02:26 PM