Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975)
Sonata for Violoncello and Piano in D minor, Op. 40
Sonata for Viola and Piano, Op. 147
(transcribed for Violoncello and Piano by D. Shafran)
Prelude from Five pieces for two Violins and Piano
(Arr. L. Atowmjan; Version for 2 Violoncelli)
The album was released on June 5, 2020 at GENUIN classics.
The CD was extensively discussed in the press and nominated for the German Record critics award.
"The young sisters have dealt intensively with this music and approach the works freshly and with emotional depth: the fast movements are wildly virtuosic, but always cultivated, the slow movements are touching and intimate, the Adagio from op. 147 in particular is enchanting, with an audible deep communication between the duo partners. A promising debut. "
Review by Dorothee Riemer, September 2020
CD tip SWR2
"That sounds overflowing, high-spirited with joy in playing, for its own sake. (...) A wonderful mixture of pleasant and unruly music."
Discussion by Susanne Stähr , August 03, 2020
CD tip Bremen Zwei
On July 26th, Wilfried Schäper presented the new CD by Katharina and Anouchka Hack on Bremen Zwei .
"New, brave, fresh, virtuoso."
Review by Daniela Knaller in the program DES CIS on ORF 1 on June 4, 2020
"I assume that after this successful debut you will hear more from the two sisters", says the music journalist Claus Fischer about Anouchka and Katharina Hack and describes the duo as a "discovery" and "an absolute stroke of luck".
Review by Claus Fischer on MDR Kultur , June 2, 2020
Interview with Anouchka & Katharina Hack in the program Spielweise on June 3, 2020
"The sister Anouchka and Katharina Hack and Gautier Capucon pull out all the stops, do justice to the late romantic "cantabilic expressiveness" of op. 40 as well as the farewell song of op. 147, a wistful fantasy about the beginning of Beethoven's moonlight sonata."
Review in Crescendo, September / October 2020 issue
Tagesspiegel / Potsdamer Neueste Nachrichten
"The way in which the cellist and the pianist encounter Shostakovich's sonatas from 1934 and 1975 impresses with their artistic maturity and passionate identification."
In "The Best Music in Summer", Frederik Hanssen recommends the duo's CD in the "Newcomer" category, Tagesspiegel & Potsdamer Latest News from June 14, 2020
"Classic Today Recommendation" with 10 out of 10 points in all three evaluation categories: "They play Shostakovich full of energy, straightforward and without fear of contact. Incredibly touching ..."
Review by Verena Düren in Klassik Heute , June 18, 2020
"Also as an introduction to the complex Shostakovich world, the CD with its range of over four decades is highly recommended." Read the full review by Hans-Gerd Martens on June 24, 2020 here
In his review of June 11, 2020 on rbb Kultur, Hans Ackermann praised the musical connection between the two sisters Anouchka & Katharina Hack.
"With their youthful esprit as well as their immense skill, they reveal the compositional quality of the works in a playful virtuoso manner."
In the review by Uwe Krusch in Pizzicato on June 15, 2020, the duo's CD received 5 stars.
"Anouschka and Katharina Hack master this difficult program brilliantly. They throw themselves into the pieces with an openness, show sufficient sensitivity and respect for the emotional moments of these ambiguous compositions."
Review by Jörg Konrad at the online magazine KultKomplott, June 9, 2020
Kultur Tipp Switzerland
Read the full CD tip from July 2, 2020 here
Lüneburg regional newspaper
"It is young musicians like the Hack sisters who are counteracting the sickness of chamber music. Now it is important to listen to what is made easier by the passion and freshness of their playing."
Reviewed on June 25, 2020
Neue (musikalische) Blätter
"In the Moderato, Anouchka and Katharina Hack find, beyond moments of melancholy, moments of rebellion, defense, and awakening, but they do not return melancholy. Thus the Allegretto does not look like a memory image of earlier years, but as a moment of inner vitality."
New (musical) sheets , July 2020
Bursting with power, lively and absolutely timeless
“To play or to hear Dimitri Shostakovich's sonatas for cello or viola and piano seemed almost impossible until the 1980s without thinking about the horrors of World War II. (…) The fact that his work in the 21st century is gradually moving out of the stigma of its historical origins and blossoming in an absolutely timeless beauty is thanks to interpretations such as those of the young siblings Anouchka (cello) and Katharina Hack (piano). "Their" Shostakovich is excitingly new, courageous and youthful and incredibly virtuoso. The master, it is to be assumed, would have liked their wonderful playing; because one thing his music should never be: contemporary war reporting. Rather, it is just as young as the Hack sisters - two strokes of luck for German music life. ” - Michael Naumann
"Shostakovich's music is an unbelievably fascinating world for us, which sometimes hits hard, sometimes enchants and leaves you speechless."
With works by Dmitri Shostakovich, the sisters Anouchka (cello) and Katharina Hack (piano) introduce themselves to GENUIN on their debut CD. They combine the Sonata for Violoncello and Piano Op. 40 and the Sonata for Viola and Piano Op. 147. The works show a wide range of Shostakovich's compositional oeuvre: from the first note, the cello sonata captivates with great narrative power and explosive energy - the viola sonata, his last work, impresses with a crystal-clear depth and transcendence.
“The idea of juxtaposing the Cello Sonata Op. 40 with the Viola Sonata Op. 147 seemed an appealing experiment: a relatively early work and a late work by a composer collide. And even if the earlier work seems more urgent, flowing, and the later work a lot more spherical and almost remote, it was exciting for us to discover the absolute timelessness in Shostakovich's music and his style. We would like to revive his own way of expression and make it audible and tangible with this CD, among other things, ” say the musicians about their program idea.
The sonata for violoncello and piano, which consists of four strongly contrasting movements, a largely tonal, comparatively early work, shows Shostakovich's unmistakable handwriting, and the melodies, which in earlier years often seem post-romantic, are given a very unique soundscape through dissonances in the harmonization.
The sonata for viola and piano op.147, his last work, was composed by Dmitri Shostakovich in 1975, 41 years after the cello sonata. The composition manages with extremely few tones, but is nonetheless powerful. Every note is part of the formulation of an essential idea in music. He completed the third movement, a musical homage to Ludwig van Beethoven, in the hospital, just a few weeks before his death. Shostakovich brings the musical essence of Beethoven's work to life in his own musical language - and thus creates his musical last words, which are slowly detaching from the earth, and soon further.
The spectrum of Shostakovich's work was enormous throughout his life; and so Anouchka and Katharina Hack show with the wonderfully sentimental prelude from the film music Op. 97 to the film "Die Stechfliege" there is a completely different musical facet of the composer. The duo received support from an illustrious guest for the recording: for the Prelude, cello star Gautier Capuçon joins in with a velvety tone.
One can feel that Anouchka and Katharina Hack are not only connected personally, but also musically through a close bond: “It is very fulfilling to be able to experience and share this path and the passion for music as sisters together. We have similar sound ideals and musical ideas, but we always give each other new impulses. ” The interaction between the sisters is also characterized by an audible common musical language.