Pieces for solo cello may seem difficult for an inexperienced listener, especially if these are compositions belonging to a new time. But Daniel Muller-Schott knows how to deliver them so that the music catches from the first points. The disk includes the sonatas by Zoltan Kodaly, Sergey Prokofiev, Paul Hindemith, George Crumb, the play by Hans Werner Henze, Pablo Casals and Muller-Schott himself.
Sonata Kodaly acts as a link between the rest of the compositions. Monumentality, advanced methods of sound production, new musical ideas make it the standard for modern composers who write for cello. Without exaggeration, its presentation by Muller-Schott can also be considered exemplary. The impressive beginning of the first part (Allegro maestoso ma appassionato) is passionate, as indicated, confident, catchy. The gloomy, mysterious second part (Adagio) and again the return of the first mood in the third (Allegro molto vivace), but already with elements of nervousness and haste. Amazing halftones of light and shadow, transitions from the finest pianissimo to fortissimo – all this is performed by Daniel.
Muller-Schott’s sonata Prokofiev turned out to be very Russian, sincere and melodic. The sonata of Hindemith and the nine-part «Serenade» Henze following her were performed in a different manner, drier, technically intense, demonstrating almost all the possibilities of a cello.
The Crumb Sonata from Muller-Schott attracts with its game of dynamic contrasts and mood swings – from light languor (the second part – Tema pastorale con variazioni) to psychedelic inflatedness (the third part – Toccata).
It is no coincidence that the album title is #CelloUnlimited. In his own composition, «Cadenza», the musician embodied the styles of those solo cello works that influenced him for many years. Essencially, this is a play that cellists usually include in their recital programs. In it, within three minutes, Muller-Schott tried to demonstrate the entire arsenal of his instrument – from lyrical melody in the most convenient register to performing various rhythmic patterns with various techniques throughout the fretboard.
The last on the disc is «The Song of the Birds» by Pablo Casals, an old Catalan Christmas song. Casals was a native of Catalonia. While in exile, the cellist performed this tune at the end of all his concerts, beginning in 1939. As a result, this play became the secret hymn of Catalonia. It is symbolic that it was with this work that Muller-Schott decided to complete the album, as if drawing a parallel between the past and present.