Natalie Clein reviews
“The orchestra had a talented soloist for the Schumann Concerto - cellist Natalie Clein. She possesses undeniable technical mastery, playing with clear articulation and clarity of sound. Clein showed her real understanding of the poetic virtuosity of the work.”
La Nacion Newspaper, Buenos Aires. Schumann Cello Concerto with the Filharmonica de Buenos Aires.
"she prodices an astonishing range of colours and evokes the widest variety of expressive styles. I find it admirable, too, how she's able, in the recording studio, to maintain so much of the excitement and directness of live performance. Music of this rhetorical character demands a fine sense of timing; Clein demonstrates this"
Gramophone Magazine 'Editor's Choice', August 2010
“…the compelling reason for acquiring this disc, which does not attempt to be a complete survey of Kodály’s cello music, is Clein’s magnificent account of the Solo Sonata, Op.8. One of the masterpieces of the cello repertory, it opens with massive, declamatory chords, and Clein’s depth of tone makes an immediate impact on this well-engineered recording.”
John Allison, BBC Music Magazine (July 2010)
“Magically deft, soaringly passionate, without any trace of self-indulgence, Clein conjures a full orchestra of colours and textures from her precious Guadagnini cello.”
Geoff Brown, The Times (12th June 2010)
“…extremely impressive, both in the impassioned rhapsodies of the first two movements, and in the array of folk tunes that are paraded in the ferociously challenging finale.”
Andrew Clements, The Guardian (27th May 2010)
“Natalie Clein’s account of the solo cello Sonata of 1915 is staggering; every technical challenge clearly surmounted, but pulsating with theatrical life.”
Graham Rickson, The Arts Desk (19th June 2010)
“Zoltan Kodály’s Sonata for solo Cello represents one of those daunting summits that cellists feel ineluctably drawn to conquer, and Natalie Clein does so here with terrific passion, piquancy and technical accomplishment.”
Geoffrey Norris, The Telegraph (25 June 2010)
“She has a beautiful, fluid style which is well-suited to the lyrical qualities of the music [Elgar Concerto], and it was this warm and tender approach that saved some of the slower sections from lapsing into sentimentality. Her encore of Pablo Casals’s version of Song of the Birds was also exquisite.”
Susan Nickalls, The Scotsman, May 2010
“Cello Suite No 1 [Bach] was given a persuasive performance by Clein, with intelligent voicing and much accent on the element of dance”
Joanna Talbot, The Strad Magazine, May 2010
“Natalie Clein in superb partnership with pianist Tom Poster, produced a gripping performance of Delius’ Cello Sonata, steering a steady course through the variety of colour and mood in this melismatic work, bringin character and distinction to its often amorphous phrases, and building to its heroic conclusion with passion and technical aplomb.”
Tim Homfray, The Strad Magazine, November 2009.
"Natalie Clein's Elgar Cello Concerto had such an impact due to the gorgeousness of her tone and the full-on emotionalism with which she approached the work. It's an approach with a high listener appeal (witness the response over more than four decades to the recording by Jacqueline du Pre).
This was a performance with an abundance of moments to cherish."
Michael Dervan, Irish Times, 7th October 2008
Elgar Cello Concerto, RTE, Dublin
“‘You know you've been in the presence of greatness’" was the judgment of one audience member at this concert. It wasn't necessary to be a classical-music fan to appreciate the musical excellence of this evening. Bach pieces bookended stunning virtuosic playing in her performance of Kodaly's Sonata. Clein relished the array of technical complexities in the Kodaly, which swept the audience along in a series of thrills and surprises. We were stunned afresh in the second half by an improvisation with the composer Simon Fisher Turner that featured a mix of recorded sounds collected over the past few days, it worked a treat.”
Eileen Caiger Gray, The Independent
Recital Mansion House, Doncaster
“Like Jacqueline Du Pré, Natalie Clein seems to be identifying herself particularly with the Elgar Cello Concerto. Her interpretative approach, though, is very different, relying on understatement rather than heavy-duty emoting to get the music across. This was an enthralling performance, with Vernon Handley and the RLPO collaborating totally in exploring the work's quiet, inner recesses with a depth and concentration that was utterly gripping. Clein's technical command is remarkable, too -- in the scurrying repeated notes in the scherzo her bow seemed to be hardly moving, yet everything was clearly articulated.”
Mike Wheeler, 8 February 2008
Elgar Cello Concerto, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Assembly Rooms, Derby
“With the solo cello representing the voice of Solomon, Clein gave a performance that was sonsistently and profoundly expressive, from the opening lament to the closing mood of resignation and despair. Clein’s delicate and petite appearance belies an inner strength and formidable technique, which she employs with integrity and commitment, her interpretation always true to the composer’s intentions.”
Oxford Times, 21 November 2007
“Her interpretation of Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No 1 was exciting-the most thrilling point of the piece was the third movement Cadenza. For solo cello only, Clein shaped the movement with long phrases, taking time for each to speak with authority. The movement began in the lower registers showing off Clein’s mellow, rich and full sound before beginning the long and sustained Allegro con moto-Clein treated the audience to a surprise encore of J S Bach’s G major Prelude from the Six Suites for Cello. Interpreting the piece at a fast tempo, this was a mature performance from a cellist who has grown into a secure and respected soloist.”
Mary Robb, musicalcriticism.com, 29 October 2007
Shostakovich Cello Concerto No 1, Royal Scottish National Orchestra/Arild Remmereit, Edinburgh Festival Theatre