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Track(s) taken from CDA67910

Kol Nidrei, Op 47

composer
1881; Adagio on Hebrew Melodies; dedicated to Robert Hausmann

Natalie Clein (cello), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Ilan Volkov (conductor)
Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
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Recording details: September 2011
City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland
Produced by Simon Kiln
Engineered by Arne Akselberg
Release date: August 2012
Total duration: 9 minutes 3 seconds

Cover artwork: Photograph from the series Last Folio (Slovakia, 2005-2011) by Yuri Dojc
 
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Reviews

'A breathtakingly beautiful dialogue between Natalie Clein and the BBC Scottish Symphony conducted by Ilan Volkov. Clein manages to explore the profound depths of [Bloch's Schelomo] and all its vocal expressivity without exaggeration or hyperbole and the orchestra's response feels minted in the moment rather than pre-planned. I'm not sure I've heard a more convincing modern account on disc. An immaculate recording' (BBC Radio 3 CD Review)

'[Clein's performance of Schelomo] is thoughtful, subtle and satisfying, well supported by the passionate and spirited BBC SSO: … in Voice in the Wilderness,Clein encompasses all the work's varied character and demands while retaining an air of polish in her playing … the Bruch, too, receives a lovely performance, with Clein bringing out the different colour of each of the cello's strings and the orchestra effecting most beautifully the transition from sombre to heavenly' (Gramophone)» More

'The strongly emotive musical aura of Bloch's Schelomo seems ideally suited to Natalie Clein's impassioned style of cello playing … Clein delivers a powerfully committed performance, but also manages to avoid over-indulgence, negotiating the peaks and troughs of the music's volatile emotional language with a clear sense of direction. Undoubtedly, Ilan Volkov and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra play a vital role in this process. Volkov brings a welcome transparency to Bloch's languorous instrumentation in the reflective secions, while the raging torrents of the orchestral tuttis have rarely sounded more highly charged' (BBC Music Magazine)» More
PERFORMANCE
RECORDING

'Natalie Clein is the cello protagonist in all four works, her range of tonal colour, her animation and her discreet soulfulness proving to be ideal qualities … the relationship between cello and orchestra is closely knit, Ilan Volkov conducting the BBC SSO with just the impetus and sensibility that this music requires' (The Daily Telegraph)» More

'Natalie Clein gives an unexaggerated performance pursuing the music's linearity and playing from the heart while conjuring some appropriate dark tone from her instrument … the music takes wing to both beguile and thrill. It's one of the most persuasive performances of this work [Schelomo] that I have ever heard … throughout, the recording is as vivid as the music … an outstanding release' (International Record Review)» More

'Clein and Volkov give a performance of Schelomo (1916) that is very moving, both in its profound sensuality and in the pervasive sense of transience that gnaws at its vision of worldly glory. They bring the same commitment to From Jewish Life (1924) and Voice in the Wilderness (1936) … the other knockout is Bruch's Kol Nidrei … beautifully done, it brings the disc to a reflective close. Highly recommended' (The Guardian)» More

'Natalie Clein's inspired collection of [Bloch's] three cello works on Jewish themes … is rare and welcome. Her impassioned, sensitive playing finds willing collaborators in the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and their former principal conductor' (The Sunday Times)» More

'Clein plunges deep into the world of Bloch's Schelomo as she effectively forms a red-hot line of communication with the listener in both its introspective, brooding moments and its soulful outbursts. The orchestra's string section produces a flawless body of sound and the balance is nicely judged' (The Strad)

'If one has enjoyed the music in those epic biblical movies of the last century, mostly starring Charlton Heston, chances are one will also respond to the works of the composer who influenced that genre. The Swiss-American Ernest Bloch (1880-1959) also wrote much secular music, but he will be best remembered for the works that reflect his Jewish heritage … completing this gorgeously performed anthology by young British cellist Natalie Clein is Max Bruch’s popular Kol Nidrei … essential listening' (Singapore Straits Times)

'Clein is a gifted interpreter of these nearly sacred musical themes, lovingly devoted to expressing the composers’ visions of what she calls 'the early 20th century yearning for a sense of identity and nostalgia for an imagined past, a past already being swept aside in favor of modernity and globalization.' And kudos to the talented Israeli conductor Ilan Volkov, whose sympathetic, restrained approach never treads on the tender solo cello passages—Clein and Volkov are a match made in heaven' (Strings, USA)» More

'You cannot wish to hear a clearer, lovelier investigation of Bloch’s Jewish decade' (Norman Lebrecht)

'[Clein] hat das nötige Einfühlungsvermögen, die starken, aufwühlenden, dunklen Klangfarben, die gelegentlichen Abstiege in seelische Abgründe mit der herzlichen Heiterkeit der volkstümlichen Klänge fein dosiert zu kombinieren. Hier gibt es keine schmachtende Melancholie und eben so wenig überschäumende Fröhlichkeit, dafür viel Sensibilität, viel Lyrik und schöne dynamische Kontraste' (Pizzicato, Luxembourg)

Max Bruch’s Kol Nidrei, Op 47, was written in Berlin in 1881 and dedicated to the cellist Robert Hausmann (1852–1909). It comprises two entirely separate musical entities. The first part is based upon a German synagogue chant, probably originating in the early sixteenth century, which has since become the universally accepted Ashkenazi setting of this eleventh-century Aramaic text. While living in Berlin, Bruch had learned one of the numerous variants of this melody from Cantor Abraham Lichtenstein (1806–1880), similar to the one that Louis Lewandowski (1821–1894) included in his two synagogue anthologies: Kol Rinnah U’t’fillah and Todah W’simrah. The second part is based upon the middle section of the song ‘O weep for those that wept by Babel’s stream’ (a paraphrase of Psalm 137) by the Anglo-Jewish composer Isaac Nathan (1790–1864), one of over thirty settings of texts that comprise Hebrew Melodies by Lord Byron (1788–1824), dating from 1815–16. The intense drama of the first part of Bruch’s Kol Nidrei, in the minor key, is counterbalanced by the overarching lyricism of the second section in the major. The composer speculated that it was primarily the enormous popularity of this work that accounted for assumptions regarding his Jewish identity. However, his earliest known ancestor was Thomas Bruch (born 1560)—the first in a long line of Christian clerics. The passion of the ‘cellist as cantor’ performing a melody that has become iconic over the centuries evokes a mood of religious devotion in those who hear it as a profoundly liturgical expression. For those who are inspired by the beauty of secular art music, it creates an atmosphere of deep meditation and repose.

from notes by Alexander Knapp © 2012

Écrit à Berlin en 1881 et dédié au violoncelliste Robert Hausmann (1852–1909), Kol Nidrei op. 47 de Max Bruch comporte deux entités musicales totalement distinctes. La première partie repose sur un chant synagogal allemand remontant probablement au début du XVIe siècle et devenu, depuis, la mise en musique ashkénaze universellement reconnue de ce texte araméen du XIe siècle. Quand il vivait à Berlin, Bruch avait appris une des nombreuses variantes de cette mélodie auprès du chantre Abraham Lichtenstein (1806–1880), variante similaire à celle que Louis Lewandowski (1821–1894) inclut dans ses deux anthologies synagogales: Kol Rinnah U’t’fillah et Todah W’simrah. La seconde partie se fonde sur la section centrale du chant «O weep for those that wept by Babel’s stream» (une paraphrase du psaume 137) d’Isaac Nathan (1790–1864)—il fait partie de la trentaine de textes que ce compositeur juif anglais mit en musique, dont les Hebrew Melodies de Lord Byron (1788–1824), datées de 1815–1816. Le drame intense de la première partie de ce Kol Nidrei, en mineur, est balancé par le lyrisme dominant de la seconde section, en majeur. Bruch spécula qu’on le supposait juif à cause, surtout, de l’immense popularité de cette œuvre. Mais son plus ancien ancêtre connu était Thomas Bruch (né en 1560), le premier d’une longue lignée d’ecclésiastiques chrétiens. La passion du «violoncelliste-chantre» exécutant une mélodie devenue, avec les siécles, iconique suscite un climat de dévotion religieuse chez ceux qui y perçoivent une expression extrêmement liturgique. Chez ceux qu’inspire la beauté de la musique savante profane, elle fait naître une atmosphère de profonde méditation et de repos.

extrait des notes rédigées par Alexander Knapp © 2012
Français: Hypérion

Max Bruchs Werk Kol Nidrei, op. 47, entstand 1881 in Berlin und ist dem Cellisten Robert Hausmann (1852–1909) gewidmet. Es besteht aus zwei völlig eigenständigen musikalischen Einheiten. Dem ersten Teil liegt ein deutscher Synagogengesang zugrunde, der wahrscheinlich aus dem frühen 16. Jahrhundert stammt und seitdem allgemein als die aschkenasische Vertonung dieses aramäischen Texts aus dem 11. Jahrhundert anerkannt ist. Als er in Berlin lebte, war Bruch durch den Kantor Abraham Lichtenstein (1806–1880) mit einer der zahlreichen Varianten dieser Melodie in Kontakt gekommen, die deutliche Ähnlichkeit mit der Melodie hat, die Louis Lewandowski (1821–1894) in seinen beiden Synagogen-Anthologien aufgeführt hatte: Kol Rinnah U’t’fillah und Todah W’simrah. Der zweite Teil basiert auf dem Mittelteil des Lieds „O weep for those that wept by Babel’s stream“ (eine Paraphrase von Psalm 137) von dem anglo-jüdischen Komponisten Isaac Nathan (1790–1864), eine von über 30 Textvertonungen der Hebrew Melodies von Lord Byron (1788–1824) aus den Jahren 1815–16. Die intensive Dramatik des ersten Teils von Bruchs Kol Nidrei steht in Moll und wird durch die übergreifende Lyrik des zweiten Teils in Dur ausbalanciert. Der Komponist spekulierte, ob wohl die enorme Popularität dieses Werks der Grund für die verbreitete Annahme sei, dass er jüdischer Herkunft sei. Sein ältester bekannter Vorfahre war jedoch Thomas Bruch (geboren im Jahre 1560)—der erste in einer langen Reihe von christlichen Klerikern. Die Leidenschaft des „Cellisten als Kantor“, der eine Melodie spielt, die im Laufe der Jahrhunderte ikonenhaft geworden ist, erzeugt eine Stimmung religiöser Hingabe bei denjenigen, die die Musik als tief-liturgischen Ausdruck empfinden. Für diejenigen, die von der Schönheit weltlicher Kunstmusik inspiriert sind, entsteht eine Atmosphäre tiefer Meditation und Ruhe.

aus dem Begleittext von Alexander Knapp © 2012
Deutsch: Viola Scheffel

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