Discography

Denise Djokic, David Jalbert - Cello Sonatas Rachmaninov and Chopin: Cello Sonatas Denise Djokic - Benjamin Britten: Three Suites for Cello Benjamin Britten: Three Suites for Cello Folklore: Denise Djokic, cellist Folklore Denise Djokic: Barber, Martinu, Britten Denise Djokic: Barber, Martinu, Britten

Folklore

  • Release date: 2005-06-28
  • Label: Endeavour Classics
  • Catalog #: END 1013

Denise Djokic: cello, David Jalbert: piano

Folklore presents a diverse and enlightening compilation of works inspired by folk music and stories. From very literal interpretations to more distant and ethereal resemblances, the listener will be carried through different landscapes and cultures in this recording. The pastoral folk songs of Vaughan-Williams lead to Stravinsky’s famed “Suite Italienne”, then onward into the nuanced and dynamic “Five Pieces in the Popular Style” of Schumann. Janáček’s Pohadka transports us into a distant world, and the album finishes with mystique and fire in Cassadó’s Suite for Solo Cello.

2006 JUNO Award nomination
2006 East Coast Music Award Classical Recording of the Year
Billboard Chart Top 15 Classical CDs

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Tracklisting

Ralph Vaughan Williams – Six Studies In English Folk Song (1926)

1 I. Adagio: Lovely on the Water
2 II. Andante sostenuto: Spurn Point
3 III. Larghetto: Van Dieman’s Land
4 IV. Lento: She Borrowed Some of Her Mother’s Gold
5 V. Andante tranquillo: The Lady and the Dragoon
6 VI. Allegro vivace: As I Walked Over London Bridge

Igor Stravinsky – Suite Italienne (1932)

7 I. Introduzione
8 II. Serenata
9 III. Aria
10 IV. Tarantella
11 V. Minuetto e Finale

Robert Schumann – Five Pieces In the Popular Style (Fünf Stücke im Volkston) (1849)

12 I. Mit humor – Vanitas vanitatum
13 II. Langsam
14 III. Nicht schnell, mit viel Ton zu spielen
15 IV. Nicht zu rasch
16 V. Stark and markirt

Leoš Janáček – Pohádka (Fairy Tale) S.62 (1910)

17 I. Con moto
18 II. Con moto
19 III. Allegro

Gaspar Cassadó – Suite for Cello Solo (c.1950)

20 I. Prelude – Fantasia
21 II. Sardana – Danza
22 III. Intermezzo e danza finale

Reviews

“[The collaboration between Jalbert and] Djokic is first rate. This music by Schumann is from his five pieces in the popular style, a work that shows off the cellist’s warm and lyrical sound. Elegant and honest playing like this makes clear why Denise Djokic refused to play crossover music. She took a risk leaving a big label, but the risk paid off. Denise Djokic has charisma, but not the charisma of antics. She has the charisma of grace.”

NPR, All Things Considered, 10 May 2006

“Cellist Denise Djokic has a heartfelt, deeply resonant, woody tone, not too sentimental, not too austere. The music here is beautiful, period.”

Primetime Philadelphia, April 2006

“Here’s an interesting program…All of the music here, however distantly, bears a relationship to folk music, or at least music of a much earlier time, and it makes a highly attractive and varied compilation. Denise Djokic is an artist of the intense, passionate variety…. there’s no denying the vividness and impact of the playing. In sum, this is a fine recital by a pair of artists with lots of talent and a sense of adventure. It stands out from the crowd, and that’s no mean accomplishment.”

ClassicsToday

“Everything clicks on this one. First of all, the recital program. The recording’s concept – of music influenced and inspired by nationalism and folk music, is nicely presented. It links everything, but there’s lots of variety. Denise Djokic comes from a very musical Nova Scotian family, and she comes into her own with this recording. Her playing here is very impressive – just as much for her taste as her skill. She uses a small, focused tone here that’s straight without too much vibrato that works so well in this folk-inspired repertoire. So many musicians really milk this kind of stuff, with big sounds and lots of sentimental vibrato. But Djokic allows the cello to simply sing the folk-inspired music, as its roots would lead you. It’s never overdone. Her intonation is near perfect, and she and pianist David Jalbert are perfectly balanced and complimentary. They both play so well individually, but together, they’re almost on another level. And the clean, clear recording is also perfectly balanced and proportioned. Watch for these two in the future – individually and as the duo. Five stars.”

CBC Sound Advice

“In this unusually accessible program, Denise Djokic and David Jalbert play like twins the same musical impulses in the phrasing, the same intuitive sense of style and pace, the same concept of dynamics and accents…The long lines and warm lyricism of Six Studies in English Folk Song (Williams) are tailor-made for Djokic’s warm, cream-textured tone. Janacek’s Pohadka evokes fairy tale imagery and Gaspar Cassado’s Suite for Solo Cello, with its dramatic opening Fantasia has the feeling of a folk-opera. Djokic shows insight into narrative style, playing with fullness and ease and bravura projection, leading shyly at first into a bold folk dance (Sardana), and ending with an intermezzo that recalls the fantasia and becomes a bold village dance. The playing on this Juno-nominated CD is both buoyantly picturesque and expertly polished.”

Halifax Herald, 26 March 2006