World-renowned cellist Wendy Warner and eminent pianist Irina Nuzova are earning critical acclaim for their riveting performances as the duo WarnerNuzova. The two performers’ contrasting cultures and traditions are at the core of the energy and insight of their interpretations. Moscow-born Irina Nuzova studied at Juilliard following rigorous training in Russia, while American Wendy Warner earned her renown as a soloist at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia under the baton and tutelage of the great Rostropovich. Warner and Nuzova first came together in 2008, out of a shared interest in performing canonical works which feature equal cello and piano parts, as well as commissioning unique arrangements and new music. As homage to their respective backgrounds, the women favor Russian and American repertoire, exploring the commonalities and ‘dissonances’ between the two cultural heritages.
Classical Candor has written “it's almost as if one performer were playing both instruments, they are so attuned to one another's feeling and responses," while AllMusic has praised WarnerNuzova’s “technically spotless, extremely tight ensemble playing, ideal balance between the two instruments, and a real sense of a singular musical vision.” BBC Magazine wrote: “(We welcome) the debut of a distinguished new duo partnership.” “Warner’s playing is totally secure technically, glowing in tone-colour, and beautifully moulded; Nuzova is a most accomplished and sensitive pianist….clearly a fine-tuned partnership.”
WarnerNuzova’s highlights include its selection as “the ensemble of choice” for the showcase performance at the Chamber Music of America annual conference as well as the release of the duo’s first CD, Russian Music for Cello & Piano, on the Cedille Records label. The album is a collection of Russian romantic works featuring Nikolai Miaskovsky’s sonata in A-minor, for the first time recorded by American musicians on American soil, as well as Rachmaninov’s Sonata in G minor. Lauded by Strings as an “elegant evocation of the Russian romantic soul,” the album debuted at #8 on the Billboard Traditional Classical Chart, was broadcast on more than 100 radio stations, and nominated as best recording by the ICMA. Also this season WarnerNuzova gave recitals in Toronto, Chicago, Boston, San Antonio, Baltimore, and Washington D.C., and offered live TV interviews and radio broadcast performances among others on WFMT Chicago, American Public Media’s “Performance Today”, and WGBH Boston. Following its concert at Music in the Park/Schubert Club (St. Paul), the duo will be featured in a double recital at the Isabella Gardner Museum. WarnerNuzova also received the special honor to perform in private for the the U.S. Supreme Court Justices, in an exclusive reading at the Supreme Court. Recently, the duo was appointed chamber music duo in residence at the Chicago Music Institute.