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Berger & Gallardo – “Chanson – Vocalise”

Title: “Chanson – Vocalise” – Works for Violoncello and Piano by Rachmaninoff and Suslin

Catalogue No.: SM 165

Release: 16.01.2012


The recordings Rakhmaninov himself made are today outstanding documents and reference sources for the interpretation of his works. All important cellists since Pablo Casals have included the Cello Sonata op. 19 and the Vocalise in their repertoire. The contemporary reactions that burdened Rakhmaninov have been nullified by all the outstanding performers who have devoted themselves to Rakhmaninov’s works.

The fate of Viktor Suslin, born in Miass in the Urals on June 13, 1942, has been similar to that of Rakhmaninov. He saw no future in the Soviet Union of the 1960s and 1970s, in which many works by contemporary composers were declared undesirable or prohibited. The Chanson contre raison and Ton H presented here provide insight into the private world of a great composer who deserves much more attention than he gets. Both compositions utilize scordatura.

Hyun-Jung Berger: „Since winning not only the first prize but also the prize for the best interpretation of a Romantic composition – our beloved Sergey Rakhmaninov Sonata – at the International Competition in Trapani, José Gallardo and I have frequently performed that magnificent work as well as the Vocalise. Our love for Rakhmaninov has grown ever deeper. – The two of us met Viktor Suslin personally in at several concerts, and we have become friends. I have often played Ton H with José, mostly in combination with Chanson contre raison. We hope that our affinity and love for them will be felt by our listeners.”


Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943)

Sonata  g-minor op.19  for violoncello and piano (1901)

1. Lento – Allegro moderato
2. Allegro scherzando
3. Andante
4. Allegro mosso

„Vocalise“  e-flat minor op.34/14
for violoncello and piano (first version 1915 )

5. Lento

Viktor Suslin (*1943)

6. „Chanson contre raison“ (1984)
Sonata for Violoncello solo

7. „Ton  H“  for violoncello and piano (2001)