Debussy, Barber, Schumann

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COMPOSERS: Barber,Debussy,Schumann
LABELS: Rhinosaurus
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: Cello Serenade
WORKS: Cello Sonata; Cello Sonata; Adagio and Allegro; Serenade
PERFORMER: Oliver Gledhill (cello)Hisayo Shimizu (piano)
The idea of setting up a ‘calling card’ company to issue debut CDs of young musicians is a good one. But the first, Cello Serenade, is a very mixed bag. Oliver Gledhill includes well-known repertoire by Debussy and Schumann plus a rarity in Maurice Gendron’s arrangement of Poulenc’s charming Serenade and some other cello ‘lollipops’. But the sound balance on much of the disc suggests that the piano (ably played by Hisayo Shimizu) and cello might almost be in different rooms. Gledhill’s playing is frequently cautious, lacking the panache to bring off Davidov and Popper, and in Schumann and Casals (the ubiquitous ‘Song of the Birds’), he becomes an easy glider. Annette Morreau