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"Joonatan Jürgenson" -  Magazine Muusika,  November 2020

Jorma Toots

While it is quite common for Estonian performers to record mostly Estonian music, Joonatan Jürgenson has dared to tackle absolute music classics on his debut album, which is almost always accompanied by centuries-long performance traditions and nowadays also plenty of comparison opportunities with the best performances from around the world. It is all the more pleasing to note that the music on the disc is played at a high professional level, representing an intelligent and non-exaggerated way of expression.

In the overall sound of the disc, the sound color of Schumann's pieces was a bit too dark, in my opinion, which on the one hand connected with the dark gravity of the album cover, but on the other hand, made me miss the greater representation of the lighter and juicier sound colors of the piano, especially in the case of chordal textures. In Tchaikovsky's suite, I did not perceive such a lack and could enjoy the bubbling rhythmic energy of all the well-known dance pieces without distraction.

As in the case of any completed sound medium, Joonatan Jürgenson's new sound record can be viewed as an interim summary of the musician's career so far, but at the same time it can be a solid and serious calling card of a young performer, from which the budding fruits will be reaped in the future.

Joonatan Jürgenson

Already in the spring, the young pianist Joonatan Jürgenson's debut album reached listeners, on which Robert Schumann's "Fantasy pieces" op. 12 and Pyotr Tchaikovsky's “Nutcracker Suite” op. 71a in a solo piano setting. Although the selection of classical records does not necessarily have a concept that ties everything together, the influence of Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, a thinker of the Romantic era, can be observed as the supporting axis for this collection. Namely, both compositions on the disc are inspired by Hoffmann's works.

The impression I got when listening to the record barely confirmed what was said in the annotation - these different bundles of small forms complement each other perfectly and make the already quite short record easy to listen to, even for people who otherwise might not have enough ears for classical piano music.

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