After a rather dry Bach, Natalya Andreeva shows inspiration and spontaneity in the works of Franck, Liszt and Shostakovich.

Preludes and Fugues – a genre that has survived centuries of music history and has constantly been revived. It is a very suitable program for a CD recording, but equally risky. You have to show yourself as an artist of high skills in all the different styles.

Natalya Andreeva succeeds in this balancing act only conditionally. Her Bach is played with measured step, the music flows elegantly, without breaks. The naturalness conceived, however, lacks some freshness, perhaps the form stands in the way. In Liszt’s Prelude and Fugue as well as César Franck’s Prélude, choral et fugue, the pianist lets the music flow from the leash, and she allows herself space to let the music unfold – above all, in the sensitively sampled chorale. With Shostakovich (Prelude and Fugue in C minor) the Russian pianist has reached familiar domestic terrain. This is heard and felt in the inner tension of the work, which Natalya Andreeva aptly displays.

—Guy Engels