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All the music in this eclectic programme reflects the phenomenal influence of gypsy music on both classical and jazz music in the 20th century – even when wearing smart ‘classical’ clothes, the music of the gypsies cannot disguise its honesty, directness and the heart beating inside the clothes.
So here we have Bartók and Kodály, the two great Hungarian composers who made comprehensive studies of folk music, alongside the world of jazz, represented by John Lewis’s Django, and the Weather Report tracks.
The music also has strong connections with Viktoria Mullova’s background. Viktoria Mullova hails from the Ukraine, where only two generations ago, her family lived simple lives, living off the land in a small village. The simple peasant qualities – calmness, honesty and simplicity – are very much part of her. Although she has conquered the most sophisticated works of Western classical music, the music on these CDs shares something of her other side.
For Nedim (For Nadia)
Er Nemo Klanz With Bartok Duos
7 Duos With Improvisations
The Pursuit Of The Woman With The Feathered Hat
Duo For Violin And Cello Op.7 - I. Allegro Serioso
Duo For Violin And Cello Op.7 - II. Adagio
Duo For Violin And Cello Op.7 - Iii. Maestoso E Largamente, Ma Non Troppo
24th June 2011
“[this disc] mingles gypsy-influenced jazz compositions by the Modern Jazz Quartet and Weather Report with several of Bartók's folk-derived pieces and Zoltan Kodály's three-part "Duo for violin and cello". The latter's astringent, bare-wire tonalities are the standout here, aptly described by Barley as not so much classical influenced by gypsy music, as gypsy music with a smart set of clothes.”
“The programme, which initially looked bitty, adds up to a coherent sequence...All of the performance have energy and imagination, and even though Kodaly's Duo, passionately played by Mullova and Barley, might seem at a tangent to the rest, it makes perfect sense as the culmination of a beautifully recorded album.”
“sit back and enjoy the brilliant, imaginative playing, with its interesting dialogue between the performance styles of jazz and classical music...[Mullova] certainly sounds spontaneous but retains a disciplined polish from her classical training...all in all this is a very stimulating programme, performed with flair and finesse.”