Valentin Silvestrov’s elusive post-modern style is rich in nostalgia for the lost music of a barely remembered past filled with beauty and spiritual aspiration. Ode to a Nightingale is a masterly response to Keats’ unsentimental reflection on human mortality, contrasting with the beauty and affecting intimacy of the Cantata No. 4 and the resonant emotional world of its companion piece, the Concertino. Starkness set against elegiac melancholy are the shared features of Moments of Poetry and Music and the Seventh Symphony – an embodiment of Silvestrov’s dual musical nature of anguish and tenderness. Valentine Silvestrov’s music has become widely acclaimed and appreciated through numerous recordings, and he has been dubbed ‘one of the greatest composers of our time’ by the likes of Alfred Schnittke and Arvo Part. Naxos and Grand Piano have added to his catalogue with significant releases and ‘beautiful, sensitive performances that make a strong impression even though they never raise their voices.’ (Fanfare)
The Critic 13th September 2020
He’s 83 and still writing. Listen up now...The record premiere of his 7th symphony, conducted in Lithuania by Christopher Lynton-Gee, is augmented by three little-known works, each of gripping fascination...the 2003 symphony walks us through the mountains of Mahler’s Ninth – an identifying quotation on the opening page – into the beckoning void of his unfinished Tenth...It’s half-tribute, half-commentary on late Mahler and the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra perform as tautly as any Mahler I have heard from the Vienna Philharmonic.