On Chanson Russe, the Van Amsterdam Duo, consisting of brother and sister Vincent (accordion) and Jeanine (violin), take us on a tour of their favourite Russian music.
The CD features works by three very different Russian composers. Different, first of all, stylistically: from the Neoclassicism of Stravinsky’s Suite Italienne to Shostakovich’s angular but sometimes playful Preludes, and from the light Romanticism of Stravinsky’s beloved Chanson Russe to the surprisingly versatile Five Spanish Pictures by accordion composer Anatoli Kusjakov. Different in their geographical connotation: the Russian of Shostakovich, the Spanish of Kusjakov, the Italian of Stravinsky. But also different in the way in which each composer dealt with the Russian political system: Stravinsky left, Shostakovich stayed but was a dissident, Kusjakov embraced the system. Different, finally, in the atmosphere and feel of the music.
— From the booklet notes by Marten van der Meulen
“Vincent’s own arrangements work fantastically well. As a result, it doesn’t take long to believe these are originals.”
Dagblad van het Noorden ****
Shostakovich – Preludes Op. 34 (excerpts)
5 Preludes in the arrangement of Tziganov/Auerbach. Recorded at Vincent’s Master Exam at Fontys School of Fine and Performing Arts, Tilburg, 2014. With Jeanine van Amsterdam (violin).
“Dramatic impact: multicoloured in harmonics, unpredictable in atmosphere, dynamics and movement. Jeanine’s slender, lithe violin tone intertwines beautifully with the accordion, and the unusual instrumentation so delicately emphasises Shostakovich’s underlying grimace.”