Lucid Culture


Concert Review: Dmitri Atapine and Hye-Yeon Park at St. Paul’s Chapel, NYC 2/9/09

A captivating, frequently fascinating duo show by the Mexican-born cellist and Korean-born pianist. Dmitri Atapine has a warm, vividly coloristic touch on the cello and seemingly effortless command of any stylistic device he chooses: booming chords, stark washes of sound or a frenetic staccato attack. He used all these and more for considerable emotional impact throughout the hourlong performance. Pianist Hye-Yeon Park provided sturdy yet highly nuanced accompaniment while Atapine was carrying the melody, and when she took over impressed with a lyrical feel that was most apparent during the program’s most overtly Romantic moments, particularly during the second movement of their Beethoven selection and then one by Tschaikovsky.


The opening piece, Luigi Boccherini’s Sonata for Cello and Continuo in A Major, G. 4 gave Atapine a chance to explore the totality of the cello’s dynamic range: Boccherini, being one of the foremost cellists of his era, wrote frequently for the instrument. The two followed with Beethoven’s for Cello and Piano in C Major, Op. 102. No. 1 that gave Park the spotlight for some affecting cascades once the second of its five movements got underway was a big crowd-pleaser; a rearrangement of a Tschaikovsky’s Pezzo Capricioso, Op. 62  was effective in maintaining the feeling of longing and anticipation left behind by the Beethoven.


The first of two real eye-openers was a student work by Ligeti, the Sonata for Cello Solo which in fact went unpublished til the 80s, big plucked chords striking amidst uneasy ambience. The second was another rearrangement, the “Silence” section from Bartok’s The Woods, a work for piano and four hands, remarkably consonant, traditional and warmly accessible. They closed with Atapine dexterously handling some lightning-fast staccato work in cello etude specialist David Popper’s Dance of the Elves, a catchy melody something akin to Flight of the Bumblebee for cello. As with that piece, there ought to be a surf band somewhere to turn it into the rock song just bubbling under its hook-strewn surface.

February 10, 2009 - Posted by | Live Events, Music, music, concert, New York City, review, Reviews | , , , , , , ,

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