This article commences with the observation that Tchaikovsky is an often misunderstood composer, and that this CD offers a high quality interpretation. This caught my interest, and I was curious to find out how Tchaikovsky has been misinterpreted. Unfortunately, the article never thoroughly addresses this statement, the closest Pearson comes to explaining this is that the CD liner to this CD does not have misinterpretations and inaccurate facts compared to many other CD liners that he has read. Pearson states that the CD notes present Tchaikovsky as an independent person in his own particular circumstances which then result in his unique kind of compositions. Pearson also concludes that the prevalent misinterpretations are due to Russian music not fitting the 19th century German narrative of music or the 20th century reinterpretation of music that concludes that American capitalism is superior to all other options. This statement is not backed up by any evidence or examples, leaving the reader wondering what Pearson means exactly by this statement. I then referred to the CD notes in the hope of finding an enlightening explanation, but to my disappointment, these were not addressed. The CD notes did include an interesting discussion of Tchaikovsky’s life and compositional styles, but they did not go any further. (Koob 2011)

Besides raising the misinterpretation issue, Pearson spends most of the review describing the playing of the music, providing lots of descriptions and injecting personal opinions on the style of playing as well as including positive opinions of the performers. The writing did not contribute enough content to better understand the works and to put them into context. At the end of the review, it just states that Pearson is a saxophonist who resides in New York City. It would have been useful to have some further information on Pearson’s background and why he is particularly placed to be an authority on Tchaikovsky. After some research, it can be found that Pearson was a CUNY Doctoral musicology candidate at their Graduate Centre. (Hunter College, 2017) Some further facts on the author would have been an interesting addition.

References

David, Pearson. 2011. ‘Delos’ release of Tchaikovsky’s Complete Works for Violin and Piano Delivers’. I Care if You Listen November, 2011. Accessed 7 March 2016. https://www.icareifyoulisten.com/2011/11/delos%E2%80%99-release-of-tchaikovsky%E2%80%99s-complete-works-for-violin-and-piano-delivers/

Hunter College. ‘Three Hunter Students and an Alumna Play Major Role at CUNY New Music Festival’. Hunter College. Accessed 7 March 2017. http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/communications/pressroom/news/three-hunter-students-and-an-alumna-play-major-role-at-cuny-new-music-festival

Lindsay, Koob. 2011. ‘Notes on the Program – Delos’ Tchaikovsky: Complete Works for Piano & Violin’. Delos 2011. Accessed 7 March, 2017. http://dbooks.s3.amazonaws.com/DE3413Dbook.pdf

Advertisements