In their newest album, cellist Alisa Weilerstein and pianist Inon Barnatan perform Beethoven's five cello sonatas — works that have been a consistent part of the duo's performance repertoire since 2008.
Composed over a span of two decades, Beetvhoen's cello sonatas give an inside look into the composer's development.
“Diving into the formidable project of recording these touchstone works with Inon, especially at such a fragile, chaotic time, was an immensely rewarding experience," Weilerstein explains. "I feel incredibly lucky to have been able to go on this unique adventure with such a wonderful partner and friend, and I invite you to join us in our celebration of this profoundly moving music."
Weilerstein and Barnatan are longtime collaborators, recording their first album together of cello sonatas by Rachmaninov and Chopin in 2015. Most recently, Weilerstein appeared on Barnatan’s 2019 recording of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto, part of his complete set of Beethoven concertos on Pentatone.
Their newest album was digitally released earlier this month, and can be found here. The physical album will be released in June.
“As we move toward the third sonata and beyond, the cello and piano become … truly equal partners," Barnatan said. "This equal partnership is a central aspect of how Alisa and I make music together, and all five sonatas have been a part of our musical journey together from the very beginning. We love their beauty, their sense of adventure, and the way they communicate directly but with intricacy and complexity.”
Alisa Weilerstein's upcoming performances include the DC premiere of Grammy Award-winning composer Joan Tower’s new cello concerto, A New Day, with the co-commissioning National Symphony and Louis Langrée from May 19–21 — and Elgar’s Cello Concerto with the San Diego Symphony, led by her husband, conductor Rafael Payare on May 27 and 28.
She will also play the Elgar in Carnegie Hall and on a European tour with the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America led by Daniel Harding from July 28 to August 10.
Inon Barnatan is the recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant and Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, and in 2019 he embarked on his first season as music director of La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest in California. La Jolla's 2022 season was expanded to four weeks from July 29 to August 26.
Barnatan's summer season also includes performances at the Spoleto, Caramoor, Lanaudiere, Aspen and Seattle CMS festivals.