The Fiery Angel features cellist Maya Fridman and pianist Artem Belogurov.
Taking a large musical work such as an opera, and arranging it into a piece of chamber music, can be quite a daunting task, as you may imagine. But it had been done before, especially in the late 19th century. Taking Sergei Prokofiev’s masterpiece,
The Fiery Angel, and recomposing – no, re-imagining – it into a half-hour story that completely conveys the story with just two instruments, that’s a monumental task. A task which Maya Fridman took upon herself in 2015, as part of her Master’s Degree in cello performance (for which she received the highest honors, cum laude).
To be able to create this arrangement, she needed to work out a way to portray all these different roles of the story with just two instruments, cello and piano. The hysterical, erratic Renata, the knight Ruprecht, Madiël, the Fiery Angel himself, and even figures such as the Village Witch and the people at the convent in Trier, all are portrayed wonderfully by Maya’s arrangement for these two instruments. Her famously expressive playing style came in perfectly to suit the various timbres her arrangement requires.
Maya Fridman says “The idea of this work came to me in December 2014. A few months before that, I started to play with Artem Belogurov. His genius and charisma prompted me look for a piece which could develop into an exciting and mystic adventure.
I knew what I wanted to find: the depth embracing the light and the dark, a story that could transcend time and language, music itself. Going back to December I was sharing my ideas with my mother, when she spontaneously suggested to arrange Prokofiev’s The Fiery Angel. The prospective of working on this piece thrilled me and at the same time seemed impossible.”
Maya Fridman, Cello
Artem Belogurov, Piano
TracklistPlease note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
Total time: 00:27:58
Sonodore RCM-402, MPM-81 Tube
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|Release Date||February 2, 2018|
The Absolute Sound
The music is, variously, brutal, passionate, and desperate, with the two perform- ers negotiating these emotional hairpin curves fearlessly.
Sonically, this is the first chamber music recording I’ve heard that rivals my #1 reference of over 20 years, the Abel/Steinberg violin sonata LPs from Wilson Audio Specialties.
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