In Schubert's Company: Works by Schubert, Akhunov, Desyatnikov & Tabakova

Reviewed on Mon 21 Aug, 2017

Among the echt-Schubert offerings, Maxim Rysanov’s reading of the Arpeggione Sonata stands out for the vibrancy and elegance of his performance.

Violist Maxim Rysanov has here assembled an innovative collection of viola music around the works of Schubert, including modern interpretations by three contemporary composers. Leonid Desyatnikov’s Wie der alte Leiermann... is already well-represented on disc in its original violin-and-piano version, but Rysanov’s viola adaption is equally evocative. Sergey Akhunov and Dobrinka Tabakova are more Berio-like in their atmospheric takes on the Viennese master, and both also provide more straightforward adaptations of Schubert songs for viola and string orchestra. Among the echt-Schubert offerings, Rysanov’s reading of the Arpeggione Sonata stands out for the vibrancy and elegance of his performance. Two violin works are also adapted effectively, the Polonaise, D 580, and G-Minor Sonata, D 408. Rysanov also turns his hand to conducting, with a performance of the Fifth Symphony with the Riga Sinfonietta, a bright, uncomplicated reading, presented with a passion and energy common to every work on the programme.
–Gavin Dixon