Vera Danchenko-Stern, founder of the Russian Chamber Art Society

Did you experience "The Restless Heart: Old Russian, Gypsy (Romani) and Folk Songs of Passion, Longing and Love" at the Embassy of France on April 27? Here are a few excerpts from Leslie Weisman's enthusiastic review in DC Metro Theater Arts...

"In I. Shyshov’s “Four Winds,” a surging, raging summons to the elements with a steady, “Volga Boatmen”-like beat, [bass Grigory] Soloviov’s emphatically thrusting arms, twisting mouth, fiery eyes and commanding voice, while ostensibly calling forth the springtime, also evoked a fiery darkness recalling the titular character in Boïto’s “Mefistofele.” Here, as always, her eyes as carefully trained on the singer as on the music and her own figuratively, yet almost visibly flying fingers, [pianist Vera] Danchenko-Stern, the master teacher aspect of her capacities coming to the fore, provided powerfully and invaluably intuitive support, while [Anna] Kusner’s guitar-playing evinced a skill that seemed at once innate, attained and proficiently applied."

"The singer and pianist conveyed the beggar woman’s story with declamatory skill and urgency, [mezzo-soprano Susana] Poretsky’s voice rising and at times half-speaking, as if addressing the audience directly, drawing us and Danchenko-Stern, a visceral and technical comrade-in-arms, compellingly into the drama. N. Shyriayav’s “To Love, Embrace and Cry Over You” was true to its name, as was Poretsky, whose deep, sumptuous tones brought home the anger and anguish of the song, as did a burnished, glowing high note."

"The joy and agility with which [domra player Tamara] Volskaya’s lightning-quick fingers strummed, picked and plucked was infectious, as was the intensely bouncy beat of [Leonid] Bruk’s balalaika, with [bayan player Anatoliy] Trofimov, his eyes never leaving Volskaya’s fingers, providing a quiet, steady pulse."

Enjoy the full review HERE 

 

 

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