Yolanda Kondonassis - Reviews


"Kondonassis has done a service to Ginastera's legacy with One Hundred and we are the beneficiaries of her advocacy. I would say if you own one record of Ginastera it should be this one." - CD Review, Ginastera: One Hundred, JEREMY SHATAN, November 1, 2016

"The album is a masterpiece. Kondonassis’s playing in the concerto is rhythmically exact, yet passionate. It is mesmerizing… The Shahams are two of the most inspiring performers of our day, and their performance on this album simply adds another feather to what must be an already heavily-plumed cap… Jason Vieaux’s playing captures the ear with equal parts charisma and wistfulness. Like the other soloists, Vieaux is at the top of his field, and he ties the album’s performances together with uncanny skill… A wonderful overview of Ginastera’s music." – CD Review, Ginastera: One Hundred, CLEVELAND CLASSICAL, October 14, 2016

"The album offers a one-hour tour through [Ginastera’s] styles: Tuneful romanticism in Pampeana No. 1 for violin and piano, percussive fireworks in that harp concerto, driving rhythms in three Danzas Argentinas for solo piano, complex melodies and harmonies in the Guitar Sonata. The more you listen, the more you want to listen." CD Review, Ginastera: One Hundred, THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, September 26, 2016

"...Kondonassis’s scale passages, Alberti basses, and trills (played with the thumbs!) were clean and assured." - Mozart's Concerto for Flute and Harp w/ the Cleveland Orchestra, CLEVELAND CLASSICAL, April 19, 2016

"In the imposing harp cadenza that preceded the concerto’s jovial final movement and in her encore “Chanson dans la nuit” by Carlos Salzedo, Kondanassis demonstrated the breadth of her commanding technique and her consistently stylish execution." - Ginastera's Harp Concerto w/ the San Diego Symphony, SAN DIEGO STORY, March 21, 2016

"Yolanda Kondonassis was the fiery soloist, playing a demanding part with zest. Ginastera’s harp writing showcased many 20th-century techniques such as sweeping the strings with the nails and bending pitches with the pedals, and yet these moments never seem forced; Kondonassis gave them a dazzling elan." - Ginastera's Harp Concerto w/ the San Diego Symphony, THE SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, March 19, 2016

"Kondonassis’ playing appeared effortless, and her every motion was planned to the smallest detail. With the final strokes of the harp and the last emphatic chords, the spell was broken, and Kondonassis rose triumphantly. The standing ovation she received spoke to the profound depth of her performance." - Ginastera's Harp Concerto w/ the Oberlin Orchestra, THE OBERLIN REVIEW, November 20, 2015

“Vieaux and Kondonassis demonstrated supreme artistry, as individual virtuosos and as a most intuitive team. Their technique allowed them to transcend the relatively limited timbral range of their instruments and create a spectrum of sonic delight.“   - Duo recital w/ Jason Vieaux, THE PLAIN DEALER, May 29, 2015

“Yolanda Kondonassis appeared effortless in her technique. Ginastera’s bold style calls for quick shifts in emotion, and Kondonassis masterfully matched timbre to each phrase’s mood and style.“   - Ginastera Harp Concerto w/ Columbus Symphony, THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH, May 16, 2015

“Her playing was resonant and confident... Her arms and hands glided over the strings, arpeggios pouring out as if by their own accord.“   - Mozart‘s Flute and Harp Concerto w/ Buffalo Philharmonic, THE BUFFALO NEWS, January 24, 2015

“Demonstrating her technical prowess, the album reveals Kondonassis’s musical character as the epitome of grace and charm.“   - CD "American Harp", CLEVELANDCLASSICAL.COM, July 17, 2013

“Kondonassis is an amazing harpist with perfect technique and a pure, limpid tone that consistently seduces the ear.“   - CD "American Harp", CLASSICSTODAY.COM, July 2, 2013

Kondonassis and Vieaux have carved out their respective niches by showcasing their instruments’ standard repertoire while also forging the blueprints for prospective concert programming for guitar and harp. That kind of dedicated investment was more than evident as an eager and attentive audience witnessed what was only Kondonassis and Vieaux’s second tandem concert – a fact that is startling, given the pair’s chemistry   - University of Buffalo concert with Jason Vieaux, BUFFALO NEWS, October 27, 2012

The program continued with Argentinian composer Alberto Ginastera‘s Concerto for Harp and Orchestra, a dramatic, cinematic and sometimes dissonant piece from 1965 that showcased Kondanassis, one of the most famous and accomplished purveyors of what she described in her post-concert comments as “one of the great underknown instruments.“ She‘s devoted her career to changing that. Her first performance with the El Paso orchestra certainly made an impression, and resulted in an encore Saturday.   - El Paso Symphony, EL PASO TIMES, October 21, 2012

"Kondonassis and Vieaux deserve to be termed magicians for the way they shaped phrases with natural fluidity, grace and, when required, fiery drama. Their program of duo and solo pieces, presented by Arts Renaissance Tremont, was a joy from top to bottom."   - Arts Renaissance Tremont concert with Jason Vieaux, THE CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER, April 23, 2012

"Friday night's "French Impressions," with Mark Sparks and Yolanda Kondonassis, was a beautiful, intimate performance by two extraordinary artists.... The music was well-chosen, beautifully and stylishly played, and presented in a friendly, intimate atmosphere, for a delightful end-of-work-week entr'acte of its own."   - St. Louis Art Museum, Recital, STLtoday.com, November 19, 2011

"American harp virtuosa Yolanda Kondonassis proved an outstanding advocate for Alberto Ginastera's fiendishly difficult Harp Concerto, making the most of the work's drama and intensity while showing her technical command of the instrument along with the musical imagination of a great artist."   - Ginastera Concerto, Spokane Symphony, The Spokesman-Review, November 23, 2009

"During the huge climaxes, powered by surging strings and winds, the harp is anything but a sweetly ethereal instrument. It's wild and bold. So fearless is Kondonassis' virtuosity, and so assured is the orchestra, that a question springs to mind: Could this CD be the San Diego Symphony's first Grammy contender?"   - CD Bright Sheng, Never Far Away, The San Diego News Network, August 25, 2009

"Yolanda Kondonassis was a marvel of incisiveness and passion in the harp sonata, which was written for her in 1995."   - Donald Erb Tribute Concert, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 31, 2009

"Guest harpist Yolanda Kondonassis was splendid, making a brittle aggressiveness as palatable as the delicacy of her soft phrase shaping."   - Ginastera Harp Concerto, Lexington Philharmonic, The Lexington Herald-Leader, February 16, 2009

"Kondonassis, who is a brilliant and expressive player, did her part with great flair."   - Bright Sheng Concerto w/Leonard Slatkin, The Dallas Symphony, The Star-Telegram, January 25, 2009