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Liasons vol. 3

Dejan Lazić

Bach, Britten

SKU: 28511

Year of release: 2011

Sonata in D-minor, Wq 69 (H 53) 18:15
1. Allegro Bach 05:09
2. Andante Bach 03:53
3. Allegretto con variazioni Bach 09:12
5 Waltzes, op. 3 (1925, rev. 1969) 10:25
4. I. Rather fast and nervous Britten 01:22
5. II. Quick, with wit Britten 01:55
6. III. Dramatic Britten 01:26
7. IV. Rhythmic; not fast Britten 03:13
8. V. Variations. Quiet and simple Britten 02:27
La Böhmer (Murky), Wq 117 _ 26 40:24
9. Allegro Bach 01:45
10. Prestissimo Bach 03:07
11. I. Early Morning Bathe (Vivace ma non troppo presto) Britten 02:43
12. II. Sailing (Andante comodo) Britten 06:36
13. III. Fun-Fair (Allegro brillantissimo) Britten 02:49
14. IV. Night (Molto lento e tranquillo, sempre rubato) Britten 05:32
15. Allegro di molto Bach 04:05
16. Adagio assai, sostenuto, ed affettuoso Bach 04:53
17. Presto Bach 02:41
18. Lento tranquillo Britten 06:09
Total time: 69:05

About this album

The word liaison can be translated in many ways: affair, affinity, connection, link, relationship, union. The CDs in the Liaisons series each feature two particular composers, enabling us to explore their musical worlds, sources of inspiration and degree of influence. At the same time, the recordings reveal their most conspicuous differences and their common denominators. Some of these composers are not often heard together (for example D. Scarlatti & Bartók or C.Ph.E. Bach & Britten). However, when time barriers and stylistic differences are put aside, many similarities may be discovered: as if the dialect is different, but the language common. On the other hand, composers who we may imagine to be very similar, and easy to combine in any programme (for example Schumann & Brahms), reveal a whole new world of diversity and contrast when heard together. Through a careful choice of composers and compositions on each CD, the Liaisons series offers a bright spectrum of colours, variety and dynamic range, challenging the listener anew with every release. The present third volume combines the very few original works for piano solo by Benjamin Britten with C.Ph.E. Bach’s Prussian Sonatas. Britten’s pieces, in all their minimalism, “unusual purity” (Arvo Pärt), perfect clarity and sometimes even emotionally restricted formality, contrast with the emerging Sturm und Drang atmosphere of Bach’s sonatas, with their freedom and variety of structural design, lucid style, delicate and tender expression, inventiveness and extreme unpredictability. Dejan Lazi?

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The Telegraph

Lazic plays with palpable heart, with genuine spirit that derives entirely from the music itself, with dexterity, subtlety and insight that make this recital thoroughly compelling.

Klassieke Zaken

arl Philipp en Britten gaan prima samen: de fruitige sonates (Wq 69, H 53 en Wq 65/42, H 189) van de pruikenkop parelen tussen Brittens steviger composities als de Vijf walsen opus 3, geschreven door een pas twaalfjarige knaap, die niettemin al goed in de smiezen had hoe je de nootjes het slimst onder elkaar kon zetten. Net als in Holiday diary, uit 1934, waarin Lazic dromerig de verre horizon aan zich voorbij laat glijden (Sailing) en een onbestemde sfeer oproept (Night). Dat het zo goed boert tussen de componisten komt vooral door Lazic: hij kiest voor ieder stuk de juiste tint en is niet bang het basregister wat aan te dikken, terwijl de rechterhand twinkeltonen inzet. Fraai opgenomen bovendien.


Serbian-born pianist and composer Dejan Lazic dazzles with great taste, phrasing, and a clear style of playing in this album of complementary works by C.P.E. Bach and Benjamin Britten. (...) Lazic truly understands the music, as is evidenced by his tasteful phrasing and slight rubati that create dramatic tension in the opening movement of the Bach Sonata in D minor. The turns and trills are lovely ornaments that simply roll off of his fingers, and throughout the sonata his sound is clean and bright. Lazic makes the melody flowing back and forth between hands in the final movement sound like a continuous stream of music. (...) Thanks to a clear, balanced recording quality, Lazic always sounds warm and bright; there is never any unwanted or excess noise in his playing. He is an intelligent artist who has chosen repertoire that is well suited to him and that makes an interesting program. (...) The fact that Lazic can evoke such a wide variety of emotions is a testament to his skills.

The ever inventive and exploratory mind of Dejan Lazic has once again led to the production of an unmissable SACD in the series of recordings for Channel Classics that he calls ‘Liaisons’. In this series (of which the disc under review is Vol.3) Lazic programmes the music of two apparently quite disparate composers and challenges us to listen with fresh ears to the various compositions involved. This idea might seem bizarre and fraught with difficulties, but such is the skill with which Lazic builds his programmes and the prodigious pianistic talent that he brings to the execution of them, the result is an unqualified triumph. (...) Those who have acquired Dejan Lazic’s two earlier ‘Liaison’ discs will need little encouragement to investigate the latest intriguing release by this phenomenal musician. Those who have yet to investigate ‘Liaisons’ have a real treat awaiting them.


verrukkelijk spannend en inspirerend (…) de dwarsverbanden die ontstaan lokken een hoge scherpzinnige vorm van genieten uit.


Croatian pianist/composer Dejan Lazic, enjoying a distinguished career, has made a number of superb recordings for Channel Classics. (…) Performances are of the highest quality, and the solo piano is very well recorded.


The Croation pianist is building up a valuable discography with Channel Classics, each new release characterised by unconventional programming and consistently winning performances. Anyone who has the nerve to transform Brahms’s Violin Concerto into an astonishingly convincing piano concerto must be a special talent. (...) Lazic’s unpredictable union works surprisingly well. (...) His feather-light despatch of the D minor Sonata’s last movement variations [C.P.E. Bach] almost melts into the first of Britten’s early Five Waltzes. (...)


Dejan Lazi?’s decision to pair C. P. E. Bach and Britten on the same CD may be seen as either a bold venture or a combination of two composers too different for comfortable pairing. Either way, this CD’s content will challenge the listener. (...) The Bach prestissimo piece here titled La Bohmer flies like a whirlwind, indicating Lazic's superb technique and, more importantly, his wonderful sense of ‘binding’ phrases even at such a hectic pace...I found this to be a most enjoyable CD (…)

BBC Music Magazine

Lazic’s fastidiously articulated fingerwork and his feel for CPE’s cultivated waywardness are persuasive.(…) Britten’s liaisons with solo piano might be small, but, as Lazic demonstrates, they’re perfectly formed.

Auf der dritten CD seiner ‘Liaisons’-Reihe führt der in Kroatien geborene, in Salzburg ausgebildete und in Amsterdam wohnende Pianist Dejan Lazic ein ungewöhnliches Paar über zwei Jahrhunderte hinweg zusammen: Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach und Benjamin Britten. Bachs drei Sonaten sind immer wieder überraschend, emotional überbordend und vielfältig, Brittens weitgehend unbekannte Miniaturen, aus dem schmalen Klavier-Solo-Oeuvre des Briten klug ausgewählt, dagegen schlicht und klar. Beides liegt Lazic, der mit feinfühligem, geistreichem, nie aufdringlichem Spiel beeindruckt. Nicht nur deshalb wird aus der überraschenden eine überzeugende Paarung.

Audiophile Audition

This is a fascinating album well worth the investment, as all of the music will repay repeated hearing and give no end of pleasure. Channel’s hi-res sound is beautifully presented.

Het Parool

Britten en Bach: mooie combi (...) elke maat zindert (...)

International Record Review

it's all about the alchemy that occurs when different sound-worlds, two centuries apart, collide. (...) This serendipitous liaison is made all the more cogent by the pianistic achievements of Lazic, whose magical touch invigorates the more impassioned moments, such as the Andante to Bach's Sonata in D minor as well as in the mellifluous murmerings of Britten's Night Piece with which the CD concludes. (...) Whatever we're in for next, I hungrily await his next iconoclastic serving.


Technical Specifications

Recording Type Bit RateDSD64
SpeakersAudiolab Holland
Recording SoftwarePyramix
Recording LocationEindhoven Holland
Recording EngineerJared Sacks
ProducerJared Sacks
Mixing BoardRens Heijnis custom made
MicrophonesBruel & Kjaer, Schoeps
Mastering EquipmentB+W 803 diamond series
Mastering EngineerJared SAcks
Digital ConvertersMeitner DSD AD/DA
Cablesvan den Hul