"Superb Recital exploring a wide repertoire"
Margarete Rolle | England | 02/04/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Enthusiasts of Russian Song may be interested to note the comments of British reviewers. Classic CD called it a "Superb recital" and commented on Savenko: "He has a genuine bass-baritone voice slightly lighter, more lyrical and wide-ranging than the typically cavernous Russian bass, but with a particularly thrilling quality" Classic FM Magazine placed it within their recommended recordings section and called it "A debut recital of great quality", and Gramophone pointed out "To listen to this carefully chosen recital is to be reminded how consistent the tradition of the lyrical song, or romans, is in Russia" Savenko responds "eloquently and vigorously, and without caricature to such as that old Chaliapin stalwart, Mussorgsky's 'Song of the Flea'. BBC Music Magazine chose to highlight that a decade ago, the songs of the composers chosen here were little-known outside Russia, "but the past few years had seen an abundance of recordings. With so much competition, the quality of the performance and programme is critical, but happily both these discs come up trumps" The other disc referred to is Savenko's recording on another label entitled Russian Vocal Masterpieces Mussorgsky and Rimsky-Korsakov Songs."
Savenko presents a fine selection of Russian art songs.
Edward L. Killham | Washington, DC USA | 07/23/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Vassily Savenko is not as well known in the U.S. as his colleague Dimitri Hvorostovsky, but both of them are worthy successors to a long line of Russian bassos going back to Feodor Chaliapin. On this CD, "Russian Images", Savenko is accompanied by the young pianist and composer, Alexander Blok. As Russian art songs share many of the charms of German lieder, including their reliance on the piano's role in the overall schema, Blok's contribution is vital. The disc contains works by a galaxy of Russian composers, including Borodin, Glinka, Mussorgsky, Rachmaninov, Rimsky- Korsakov, and Tchaikovsky, many of them in settings of poems by Alexander Pushkin. Although some knowledge of Russian is helpful in gaining a full appreciation of these vocal gems, the disc is accompanied by a free, but serviceable, English translation."