In an apparent play-on-words, the twosome known as duoW, after the last names of violinist Arianna Warsaw-Fan and cellist Meta Weiss, gives us this Blu-ray music program, Entendre. The combination of violin and cello is not one that has an extensive repertory, but we do get five pieces that exploit this partnership perfectly:
- Duo for violin and cello (Zoltan Kodaly)
- Passacaglia in G minor on a theme by George Frederick Handel (Johan Halvorsen)
- Grand Duo de Concert (Adrien-Francois Servais/Hubert Leonard)
- Sonata for Violin and Cello (Maurice Ravel)
- The Stars & Stripes Forever (John Philip Sousa, arranged by Bruce Dukov)
Each of these pieces offers plenty of contrast consistent with the eclectic tastes of the duoW. Most of this program with the exception of the Sousa number will be unfamiliar to many listeners but, played this well, these works will provide considerable enjoyment.
Lacking a 7.1 system, I auditioned the 192kHz/24-bit versions in 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and 2.0 LPCM soundtracks. The surround version was clearly airier, but both gave nice accounts of the voices of these two instruments.
This is another Sono Luminus twofer with an accompanying red book CD. The enclosed program booklet provides useful background on each piece and brief biographies of the two artists.
The Definitive Word
You may not have heard about this exciting young pair of musicians but their 2011 YouTube video, “Ghosts and Flowers” that features the Handel-Halvorsen Theme and Variations went absolutely viral (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxO3CAAuh8k). It is a real treat for the ears and eyes and will give you the best possible introduction to these stars in the making. The Sono Luminus Blu-ray music disc adds four more selections that are well worth hearing when rendered this well. While I don’t think that I will giving away my Jascha Heifetz/Gregor Piatigorsky recording of the Handel-Halvorson piece or my JosephGingold/Janos Starker rendition of the Koday sonata that does not speak poorly for the current offering. These are two talented players who appear to have a bright future judging from this current release. Hopefully, the SL recording team will let us get to hear more from the duoW.
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