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Marianne Thorsen - Violin     

Engagingly fleet-fingered, sweet-toned, mellifluous performances, topped off with perfect cadenzas.

Classic FM Magazine, Five Stars. Mozart Concerti CD with the Trondheim Soloists - winner of the Norwegian Spellemann Prize: Best Classical Album 2006

The glory of the evening, however, was the Norwegian violinist Marianne Thorsen's performance of Nielsen's Violin Concerto - technically first-rate and full of love for

this very lovable music.

The Independent Concert Review

This was masterly playing, impeccably phrased and articulated. Rarely has Mozart come dancing off the page so enticingly. Thorsen's deeply committed playing succeeds in making the music both expressively cogent and structurally compelling.

International Record Review, Mozart Concerti CD

The Violin Sonata is a work of profound seriousness and the very fine performance by Marianne Thorsen and Ian Brown makes the strongest possible case for it.

International Record Review. Thorsen as first violin of the Nash Ensemble: Hyperion's September 2013 release Bridge: Phantasy Piano Quartet & Sonatas / Hyperion CDA68003

The Cello Sonata receives a wonderfully searching performance from Paul Watkins and Ian Brown, complemented by Marianne Thorsen's account, again with Brown, of the Violin Sonata of 1932. By then, Bridge's mature style was fully formed, with its conciseness and thematic economy; the earlier lyricism is there, but as just one part of an expressive web. Thorsen and Brown catch those moods wings perfectly.

Andrew Clements, The Guardian. Thorsen as first violin of the Nash Ensemble: Hyperion's September 2013 release Bridge: Phantasy Piano Quartet & Sonatas / Hyperion CDA68003

The Violin Sonata, played with searing tone and rhythmic dash by Marianne Thorsen and Ian Brown - it would be hard to imagine more compelling performances.

Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times

Sunday Times CD of the Week, March 4th 2012. Turina Violin Sonata / Hyperion CDA67889

...a highly recommendable disc for anyone who enjoys early 20th-century Spanish music. Everything here is performed with great warmth and a real sense of belief in the music - Marianne Thorsen and Ian Brown's eloquent and characterful account of the Sonata espagnola.

BBC Music Magazine, June 2012 *****.Turina Violin Sonata / Hyperion CDA67889

In the Second Violin Sonata, violinist Marianne Thorsen is clear and precise, with beautifully sculpted phrasing, but she soon lets rip with broad G-string melodies dripping in luscious vibrato.

David Kettle, The Strad. Turina Violin Sonata / Hyperion CDA67889

Thorsen played with confidence and utter musical assurance, with a singing rich tone, great power of projection, meticulous accuracy of intonation and attack and with deeply felt expressivity.

The Strad Magazine, Nielsen Concerto Performance

Dazzlingly violinistic and brilliantly played by Marianne Thorsen

The Sunday Times, Suk CD

The agile grace of each individual player was another thing to marvel at, above all violinist Marianne Thorsen, secure in the perilously high violin part. And there were surprises too, such as the excitingly fast pace of the Scherzo. It was a concert that left one uplifted and enriched.

The Telegraph, Concert Review, Thorsen with Nash Ensemble

The excellent Marianne Thorsen warms to her compatriot's soulful, singing melodies, soaring...throwing herself into a flying-fingered cadenza...irresistable flair and energy.

Catherine Nelson, The Strad Magazine, Kleiberg Concerto CD

Marianne Thorsen, in the Violin Concerto, can go from some of the most expressive dolce playing I've heard to navigating breathtaking technical cadenza-like passages with ease as effortlessly as a chameleon changes colors. Five gold stars; and more.

Jerry Dubins, Fanfare Magazine, Kleiberg Concerto CD

Marianne Thorsen is a searching artist, as many will know from her work with the Leopold String Trio and Nash Ensemble. She is an impressive violinist too and commands a fine range of tonal and expressive gradations, as in the first-movement cadenza of K218.

Gramophone Magazine, Mozart Concerti CD

There are magic moments galore along the way, but to hear Marianne Thorsen (ravishing portamentos) soar aloft with the pulsating phrases is an unforgettable experience.

International Record Review, Kleiberg Concerto CD

In Op. 3's second minuet, Marianne Thorsen's beautiful and exact interpretation of all Beethoven's phrasing marks wins even over Grumiaux's spontaneously communicative playing.

Gramophone Magazine, Beethoven String Trios CD

The Violin Sonata, a more elusive work, long underestimated, is given an equally persuasive performance, with Marianne Thorsen, accompanied by Ian Brown, freely expressive.

Gramophone Magazine, Walton CD

Violinist Marianne Thorsen and viola player Lawrence Power were the soloists in the Sinfonia Concertante K364. It was alive, spontaneous, witty, and crucially conveyed the sense of two very fine instrumentalists exchanging ideas, and commenting upon them. One moment Thorsen was the more expansively expressive, then the next it would be Power, yet their playing always dovetailed expertly.

The Guardian, Concert Review, Thorsen as Soloist with the Philharmonia / Brüggen

And the firm but discreet leadership of violinist Marianne Thorsen was just as evident in Beethoven's E flat major septet, where her solo lines were as delicate as the beautifully measured contributions of her colleagues.

The Guardian, Concert Review, Thorsen with Nash Ensemble

The dialogue between the violinist Marianne Thorsen and violist Lawrence Power was wonderfully alert and spontaneous. Cadenzas were suspenseful.

The Times, Concert Review, Thorsen as Soloist with the Philharmonia / Brüggen

What better way to launch Wigmore Hall Live, the venue's new label, than with the Mendelssohn Octet, led by the Nash Ensemble's superb first violin, Marianne Thorsen.

The Times, Mendelssohn CD - Four Stars

High honours also go to violinist Marianne Thorsen who plays the 13-minute Ballade with a radiant glow and passion which have one hanging onto her every note. Enhanced by one of the most natural-sounding recordings that even Andrew Keener and Simon Eadon have ever produced, this is a must for all lovers of late-Romantic chamber music'

International Record Review, Suk CD

In the Adagio there's ethereal duetting between Richard Hosford's clarinet and Marianne Thorsen's pure, sweet-toned violin. But the players are also acutely responsive to the music's darker undercurrents;

BBC Music Magazine, Concert Review, Thorsen with Nash Ensemble, Schubert Octet

The Nash Ensemble's contribution on disc to the Walton centenary celebrations is Walton's romantically expressive Violin Sonata of his full maturity - played with understanding, subtlety and a wide range of colours, well captured by the microphones. In the Sonata, the violinist Marianne Thorsen displays a ravishingly sweet tone in the upper register, for example in the muted coda of the first movement.

BBC Music Magazine, Walton CD

From then on, the concert proved a perpetual delight. By the time the ardent and graceful Marianne Thorsen and the soulful and mischievous Lawrence Power had had their youthful, spontaneous way with the Sinfonia concertante, one felt one had lived through a whole sequence of wordless operatic duets running the expressive gamut from flirtatiousness to tragedy.

The Independent, Concert Review, Thorsen as Soloist with the Philharmonia / Brüggen

Microphones capture a strong sense of Thorsen's physical presence, but her interactions with the small orchestra do not suffer. The strongest feature of the recording is not its raw engineering muscle but the interpretation that is constructed to match the sound environment: Thorsen devises an unusual reading that downplays the sometimes-overdone lyricism of these youthful, highly melodic works and broadens them out somewhat, allowing for the delineation of interior lines in the orchestra -- they often seem to come out of nowhere in a delightfully lively way.This is indeed a fresh version of Mozart's violin concertos, and a fine gift for someone who has just acquired Super Audio equipment.

James Manheim, All Music Guide, Mozart Concerti CD Review

It is hard to imagine a better performance of this piece; Thorsen's purity of tone, strength and control of line, vibrant expressiveness and formidable technical ability make for a gripping and moving interpretation. Marianne Thorsen is unerring in transmitting her deeply emotional self-communing...integrates tricky double-stopping effortlessly into her lyrical flow. (The concerto) concludes with a long solo cadenza, as free as air and almost extempore in Thorsen's hands; brilliantly expressive and technically flawless in execution. Enthusiastically recommended., Kleiberg Concerto CD Review

Thorsen's sweet-toned purity, ringing intonation and beguiling espressivo prove ideal for the composer's essentially gentle inspiration. Svendsen could hardly wish for a more sympathetic and persuasive exponent than Thorsen, who receives first-rate backing from Neeme Järvi and his Bergen players in seductively realistic sound.

The Strad, July 2013

Svendsen Violin Concerto with

Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra / Järvi Chandos CHAN 10766

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Alasdair Strange


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