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Silvestrov ‘The Messenger’

Recording Artist: Borys Fedorov, Daniel Rowland
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Together with pianist Borys Fedorov Daniel brings a very personal hommage to Ukrainian composer Valentyn Silvestrov



BBC MUSIC MAGAZINE: ***** “ Born in Kyiv, 1937, Valentin Silvestrov is currently – like Russian-Ukrainian pianist Borys Fedorov in Holland – a refugee, now based in Berlin. The solos and duos on this radiant release from Fedorov, Daniel Rowland (violin) and Maja Bogdanović (cello) are in themselves powerfully intimate, and are imbued with still greater intensity in light of the present suffering of his people. Yet none of these pieces are emotional outpourings, but offer transcendent distillations of thoughts, feelings and memory. Most angular is Piano Sonata No. 2 (1975), its deep resonances and bright splashes of notes poised between multiple worlds. The violin-piano duos which comprise most of the album include the wonderfully ambiguous Post Scriptum(1990); the beautiful Five Pieces (2004) and Three Pieces (2005); and Hommage à J.S.B.(2009) which packs much Bach-permeated expression into three miniature movements.“ Steph Power, BBC Music Magazine

NRC *****  “ His Prayer for Ukraine grew into the protest song against the war in his country. The music of the 85-year-old Ukrainian composer Valentyn Silvestrov forms an answer to and an echo of what already exists. And so you come across fragments of Mozart and Schubert in his pieces, but without losing the awareness that you are listening to a distinctly personal style that reaches out to mysterious distances. Pianist Borys Federov immediately sets the tone with the title work The Messenger, which Silvestrov wrote in 1996, shortly after the sudden death of his wife. It symbolizes the rest of the album: the search for the gate of another world with the music as the key. Federov and violinist Daniel Rowland are ideal interpreters for Silvestrov, as they seem to have a similar attitude to life and music. In their eyes and ears, notes and sounds are not only an autonomous language or art, but also a way to a better understanding of existence “ Joost Galema, NRC Handelsblad

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