LEBRECHT LISTENS | Janusz Wawrowski And The Lithuanian Nationwide Symphony Orchestra Provide Elegant Silvestrov


Composer Valentin Silvestrov in 2009 (Photo: Smerus/GNU Free Documentation License)
Composer Valentin Silvestrov in 2009 (Picture: Smerus/GNU Free Documentation License)

Valentin Silvestrov: Widmung & Postludium for Piano & Orchestra (Naxos)

★★★★☆

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Days after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, a composer in his 80s was smuggled overseas beneath situations of secrecy and appreciable hazard. Silvestrov arrived finally in Berlin with only one suitcase stuffed with music manuscripts. He lives now in Berlin exile, as a visitor of a neighborhood musical functionary.

The 2 works on this album painting a composer battling forces of historical past and destiny on his doorstep. Widmung (Dedication) is a type of violin concerto written for Gidon Kremer in 1990 because the Soviet Union was collapsing. Silvestrov’s spouse, Larissa Bondarenko, died across the time of its Munich premiere. Kremer’s recording, for a now-defunct label, vanished into ether (although it may be discovered on AppleClassical).

Silvestrov items collectively fragments of a disintegrating world, utilizing orchestral devices to take care of a semblance of continuity. The impact is, directly, disturbing and consoling. The violin flits out and in, searching for which means and survival. The ear is drawn to its pilgrim progress, retaining one phrase whereas anticipating the subsequent. Throughout three-quarters of an hour, the concerto creates a meditative area, a shelter that’s as trusted as it’s illusory. A young episode within the second motion displays on all that may have been. The evocative soloist is Janusz Wawrowski; Christopher Lyndon-Gee, a Silvestrov specialist, conducts the Lithuanian Nationwide Symphony Orchestra.

Postludium for piano and orchestra, relationship from 1984, performs with and round a 12-note row that appears to be making use of for membership in Western modernism. Earlier than lengthy, nonetheless, Silvestrov finds his consolation spot in passages of contemplative transcendence, damaged solely by the plinking of a decentralised piano.

I can’t get sufficient of it. It is a actually vital composer with an authentic voice.

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