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This is an inspired coupling. Liya Petrova took joint first prize at the 2016 Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition; jury chairman Nikolaj Znaider made a point of identifying her way with the Nielsen. Petrova makes the finest possible case for hearing this wonderful piece on a regular basis. Her cadenza is staggeringly good, while the first movement is intensely lyrical: she sings with her violin. Under Estonian conductor Kristiina Poska, the Odense orchestra’s timbres are finely honed, while the finale exudes the most delicious cantabile.

Both concerto openings invite in a sweet tone, and Petrova delivers perfectly. She moves into Prokofiev’s language like a chameleon; the Scherzo is elfin. This interpretation threatens the famous Vengerov/Rostropovich version – there can be little higher praise. The high recording quality unobtrusively supports the interpretative level.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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