In this volume for middle-grade players Nicolai Podgornov captures the fleeting notion of the changing of the seasons. Each of the twelve pieces reflects the typical atmosphere of a month in the annual cycle from birdsong in March to sleigh rides in December. Expressive pieces such as these with all their vivid colours and imagery will stimulate and inspire adults and children alike.
Podgornov's musical journey takes us through waltzing snowflakes in January, a sparrow all-staccato in March, a jazzy scarecrow in July, leaves falling sadly but beautifully in October, and a joyful Christmas sleigh ride in December. All the music lies well under the hand, and the two-page pieces (February, March, October, November and December) are in particular worth exploring. Pianist Magazine 10/2013
The Russian composer and pianist Nicolai Podgornov, born and educated in Leningrad and now living in Germany, has gifted us with this hugely enjoyable 'Seasons' collection. Truly in the spirit of Tchaikovsky, almost homage to him, each of the months captures a seasonal atmosphere with unashamedly tonal and melodious charm from Birdsong in March to sleigh rides in December. I hugely enjoyed these pieces and I think my pupils will do too. (…) Piano Professional Magazine (Beate Toyka) Autumn/2013
This is a beautifully presented book with a lovely glossy cover and a short preface. (…) Having said that, these are lovely, romantic, characteristic pieces, and with their subtle technical challenges they are reminiscent of Burgmüller. They would make suitable "between the grades" pieces, good teaching studies (each piece develops technique) and atmospheric sight-reading pieces for more advanced pupils. They would also provide an imaginative stimulus for discussion and pupils' own compositions, and would suit children, teenagers and adults alike. Mr Podgornov manages to marry his ability as a teacher with his skill as a composer: each piece has imaginative writing and precise markings and will inspire and give pleasure throughout the year. Music Teacher Magazine 1/2013
(…) The composer's varied musical life is apparent in this latest piano album of twelve pieces based on every month of the year in which each piece paints a picture in sound of the music. The "Little Sparrow" for March is full of hopeful springtime charm, whilst the "Dance of the Snowflakes" for January is extremely diaphonous and gentle; the "Christmas Sleigh Bells" for December mirror the musical mood with quiet repetitive bell-like chords. If ever tonepaintings can tell stories, these pieces do exactly that! The musical ideas and motifs are extremely varied and individual, really capturing the mood of each month and its specific characteristic. (…) Having said this, all twelve pieces have an individual charm that will certainly appeal to young Intermediate pianists while offering more advanced students, excellent new sightreading material. Piano Journal Issue 98/2012