Whispering Leaves: Czech Music for Cello & Piano | Cobra COBRA0069

Whispering Leaves: Czech Music for Cello & Piano


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Label: Cobra

Cat No: COBRA0069

Barcode: 8713897904253

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 23rd March 2018



Lucie Stepanova (cello)
Ksenia Kouzmenko (piano)


Janacek, Leos

On an Overgrown Path, JWVIII/17
» Book 1: no.2 A blown-away leaf (arr. Milos Sadlo for cello and piano)
Pohadka (Fairy-tale), JWVII/5

Martinu, Bohuslav

Cello Sonata no.2, H286

Palenicek, Josef

Chorale Variations on the Theme 'O Sacred Head, Now Wounded'


Lucie Stepanova (cello)
Ksenia Kouzmenko (piano)


“Whispering Leaves” is a new project from violoncellist Lucie Štěpánová and pianist Ksenia Kouzmenko, featuring Czech music for cello and piano. The artists play works by Leoš Janáček and Bohuslav Martinů, as well as composer Josef Páleníček.

Josef Páleníček (1914-1991) was a very expressive and versatile pianist, fascinating performer of Janáček’s works, and a lifelong friend of Bohuslav Martinů, with whom he studied together in Paris. But, unfortunately as a composer he is not very well known. On this CD you’ll find a special work, his moving Chorale Variations on the famous 17th-century chorale “O Sacred Head, Now Wounded”. Written in 1942, in response to a dramatic personal experience, this is one of the most important Czech works for cello and piano from World War II. This recording is the world premiere of this piece on CD.

It is joined by the enchanting Pohádka (“Fairy Tale”) by Janáček, the intense and impressive Second Sonata for cello and piano by Martinů, and by “A Blown-Away Leaf” by Leoš Janáček, a beautiful miniature from the piano cycle On an Overgrown Path, in a transcription for cello and piano by the legendary Czech violoncellist Miloš Sádlo. This warm, light and loving piece is also inspiration for the title of this CD: “Whispering Leaves”.

Lucie Štěpánová and Ksenia Kouzmenko have been performing as a duo for ten years, known for their warm and expressive playing. Their repertoire includes works from Beethoven to Escher and in their programmes, they like to look for new works, and unexpected connections.

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