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PROKOFIEV, S.: Romeo and Juliet, Op. 64 (excerpts) (arr. for viola and piano) (M. Jones, Golani, Hampton)

Composer(s):Prokofiev, Sergey
Artist(s) Hampton, Michael, piano • Jones, Matthew, viola • Golani, Rivka, viola
Period(s) 20th Century
Genre Classical Music
Category Chamber Music
Catalogue 8.572318
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
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One of Prokofiev’s best loved works today, Romeo and Juliet was initially declared ‘impossible to dance to’. The composer resorted to making Symphonic Suites of the work, subsequently arranged for viola and piano, with the composer’s full approval, by renowned Soviet performer and founder of the Beethoven String Quartet Vadim Vasilyevich Borisovsky. The adaptation loses little from Prokofiev’s timeless score through expert utilization of the viola’s full technical possibilities, a quality enhanced by the ‘sensuous and dramatic’ (The Strad) artistry of outstanding viola player Matthew Jones.


Review By Oleg Ledeniov,MusicWeb International,March 2012

The performers recreate the emotions of the big score. So, for example, Dance of the Knights is appropriately massive and cruel, even scary, while the inner episodes are, in turn, sweet and tender—and icy and insecure. Mercutio’s jolliness is infectious, yet his tale about Queen Mab is mysterious and spooky. In the Parting scene, the viola of Matthew Jones alternates between the violin’s high clarity and the cello’s opulent depths. The piano sounds heavy-handed at times, but somehow it works well for this music and comes as an improbable advantage.



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