sitkovetsky trio

Credit: Julia Severinsen


The Observer, November 2023 (*****)
Bath Mozartfest: “In the hands of these seasoned players, demanded we sat up and paid attention. You could feel backs straightening all around the room.” 

Two Moors Festival: “Tchaikovsky’s great Piano Trio, a work of almost orchestral sweep and grandeur, and ferociously demanding for all three musicians. It’s heard too rarely, but when played with the kind of conviction and authority that the Sitkovetsky brought to it here, it was an overwhelming experience, and well worth the trip to Exmoor all on its own.”

BBC Music, September 2021 (****)
“Ravishingly done by the Sitkovetsky Trio, who more than inhabit the scope of Ravel’s expressive language and ambition in his attempt to expand the form’s musical language”.

The Strad, September 2021 (Recommended Recording)
“Perfectly judged, poised ensemble in lovingly sculpted French piano trios … The
Sitkovetsky Trio really has the measure of Ravel’s Trio, from the impeccable octaves in the sultry first entry of violinist Alexander Sitkovetsky and cellist Isang Enders to the work’s fiery, trill-laden conclusion … These three (including pianist Wu
Qian) demonstrably play as one”

Gramophone September 2021
“Much admired in these pages for their interpretations of Beethoven and Mendelssohn, the Sitkovetskys make their first foray into French music with an engaging disc that places Ravel’s only Trio alongside Saint-Saëns’s Second … the waltz ebbs and flows in the most delightful way. The fugal finale is brilliant, clear and quite stark … meanwhile the Ravel is extremely fine … The playing is at once virtuoso and even-handed, textures and counterpoint beautifully clear … a really beautiful performance.”

Pizzicato, July 2021
“I know some very good versions of Camille Saint-Saëns’ 2nd Piano Trio, but none has the degree of expressivity that the three musicians of the Sitkovetsky Trio achieve. The music is so highly differentiated and enlivened in the five movements that it continually grips the listener. And it grips primarily because everyone contributes with an open ear and, above all, a very alert mind, an immense richness of nuance of colors and dynamics, in a wonderfully detailed playing that reveals the not infrequently veiled refinement of the composition. In this generous interpretation, the purity of lines and delicate musical movement become evident in an extraordinarily fulfilling rhetoric, while an exciting alternation of urging and lingering leads to an electrifying spontaneity.

The Ravel trio is similarly put under tension by a communicative force, with much
passion, sublimated contrasts, a supple and elegant musical flow, deep and poetic
gestures that also make the music very mysterious at times.”

“… we hear a refined timbre, lightness of touch and subtle palette of nuances and elegance of style … the slender phrasing breathes naturally … a splendid album”

BBC Music Magazine (*****)
“Like three good friends enjoying a glass of wine and a natter, the Sitkovetsky Trio sparkle with conviviality in this pairing of early and middle-period Beethoven. It’s wonderfully uplifting.”

Gramophone Magazine
“Admired in these columns for their Mendelssohn, Smetana, Dvorák et al, the Sitkovetsky Trio are equally impressive in Beethoven … they combine a sense of dialectical urgency, crucial in this work, with a natural conversational intimacy. Pianist Wu Qian, first among equals in this music, has a limpid, sparkling touch, using the pedal sparingly … Marrying polish and imaginative flair, minutely attentive to what the composer wrote, the Sitkovetsky’s Beethoven stands up well in a crowded field and whets the appetite for future installments.”

BBC Radio 3 Record Review
“Incredibly well matched, this is an established trio and you can tell how much they trust each other. There’s a wonderful mixture of buoyancy, particularly the pianist Wu Qian has the most formidably clear technique when it comes to some of the more taxing writing in the faster movements … It’s a lovely recorded sound as well.”

The Whole Note
“The Sitkovetsky Trio attracts attention with their elegant interpretations of carefully selected Beethoven piano trios and the creation of a particular sound that is very much their own. I was charmed by the lovely blend of the instrumental colours and the finely detailed and thoughtful work that went into directing and following the tides of these notable compositions … Much appreciated is the Sitkovetsky Trio’s ability to stay within the bounds of traditional chamber music-making while adding the intensity and vitality of their own understanding. A noble companion to contemplative times.”

Music Web International
“Pianist Wu Qian always plays with great verve and brilliance … [her] highly assured pianism stands out, as she dispatches all manner of runs and figurations with all the panache and aplomb of the young Beethoven … The Sitkovetskys are very effective in bringing off this almost tongue-in-cheek denouement … this release has much going for it in a crowded field.”

“A peaceful exhilaration exudes the Sitkovetsky Trio … The music flows and dances with great naturalness and lightness. The Sitkovetsky Trio shows that it dominates Beethoven’s entire range of expression.”

“… I found myself quite excited—riveted really—by the Sitkovetsky’s readings … The intense drive and nervous energy in the performance keep the listener on edge with fast tempos, fierce accents, and ferocious, clipped chords …This is a very encouraging start to a new survey of Beethoven’s piano trios.”

Several Instruments
“The Sitkovetsky Trio usher us into a completely different soundscape with their performance of the second Piano Trio of Beethoven’s op. 70 set … Here again is evidence of the sensitivity and musicality of the Sitkovetsky Trio. This entire program is remarkable, and bodes well for future volumes.”



The Sitkovetsky Piano Trio consists of violinist Alexander Sitkovetsky, pianist Wu Qian and cellist Isang Enders. 


Credit:  Julia Severinsen

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