cello | Worldwide

The Canellakis-Brown Duo—cellist Nicholas Canellakis and pianist Michael Brown—have been playing together for ten years and it shows. Their concert Tuesday night at the Baruch Performing Arts Center was a superb display of the kind of assured, responsive, sincere playing that is a pinnacle of chamber music performance yet is more often heard in jazz and other music than in classical.

George Grella, New York Classical Review

Boston Chamber Music Society guest pianist Benjamin Hochman and cellist Nicholas Canellakis joined violinist Jennifer Frautschi and violist Marcus Thompson seamlessly, communicating and interacting as if they had been playing together for years, conveying layers of unsuspected depth.

The Boston Musical Intelligencer

For those of us who had not been ANYWHERE south this winter, Sunday’s Rockport Music Shalin Liu Hall provided a cure for the midwinter blues with an inspired and inspiringly-played concert by a quartet of four extraordinarily gifted friends who have played together in various permutations; they should really take it on the road.

Susan Miron, The Boston Musical Intelligencer

Canellakis is a highly articulate soloist who not only performs the music; he inhabits it. His impeccable technique enables him to remain confident and in control while executing the fiendishly difficult passages Rozsa throws at him (and there are many). That composure allows him to convert pyrotechnics into phrases that are rich in beauty and meaning.

Christine Facciolo, Delaware Arts Info

Soloist Nicholas Canellakis and the Bangor Symphony Orchestra on Sunday captured all the joy and anguish Schumann poured into the [cello concerto]...

Judy Harrison, Bangor Daily News

When some soloists play (thinking of three or four in the past 18 seasons), they seem to inhabit the music so deeply it is almost like speaking, whispering, divulging an emotional part of themselves. This is what the audience heard as Nicholas Canellakis played the Dvorak Cello Concerto. The young man was sharing his soul, his emotions and most intimate thoughts with the audience, searching, pondering, expressing. With technical brilliance, he called out the audience’s deepest responses ... This was a performance too deep for tears, and the artist was called back for three curtain calls to cries of “bravo.”

Linda Phillips, Greenwich Sentinel (Connecticut)

“Mr. Canellakis was essentially note perfect. There was not only a high degree of intensity to his playing but also an anguish that belied his youth.” 

The New York Sun

“His energy and technical agility gave both light and heat... The Chopin glowed with warmth, and the Shostakovich, the evening’s highlight, offered a commentary on the human condition that ranged from vivid incisiveness to the most touching quiet introspection.” 

The Washington Post

“Mr. Canellakis was simply breathtaking right from the cello's passionate opening statement. He was deeply involved in the music, moving seamlessly from a gleaming upper register to the soulful singing of his middle range. Capable of both redolent lyricism and energetic, jagged flourishes, Nicholas's playing seemed so at home in the venerable Hall. The audience gave him a lusty and well-deserved round of applause as he was called back to the stage after his exceptional performance” 

Oberon's Grove

“Stood out with solos of power and expressiveness.” 

The Philadelphia Inquirer

“One of the most prominent young cellists.” 

The New Jersey Star Ledger

One of the finest chamber concerts of the season, with a pair of rarities that proved genuine discoveries.

Lawrence A. Johnson, Chicago Classical Review
CMSLC musicians Tommaso Lonquich, Nicholas Canellakis, Yura Lee, Wu Qian, and Arnaud Sussmann performed at Wigmore Hall April 9, 2019.

You could be forgiven for thinking the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center had fielded a full team for Brahms’s Piano Quartet No 1 in G minor — perhaps even in Schoenberg’s orchestration — such was the power of their performance....The ensemble brought a new work by Brett Dean, Seven Signals, giving its UK premiere...The fine players in this engaging work were Tommaso Lonquich, Arnaud Sussmann, Nicholas Canellakis and Wu Qian.

Barry Millington, Go London

Beethoven’s Concerto for Violin, Cello, and Piano...feels inevitably masculine, with a slow build and ultimate denouement that has Beethoven written all over it. But in Michael Brown, Elena Urioste, and Nick Canellakis’s careful hands, the piece became one of humor and intense, witty repartee. An electric, wild flirtation flew through the air between violin and cello for all three movements, drawing a few smiles and wide eyes ...

Lucy Gelman, The Arts Paper (New Haven)

The three young soloists were outstanding — Elena Urioste, violin, Nicholas Canellakis, cello (and the brother of the conductor) and Michael Brown, piano. They played with great familiarity with each other's technique, the cellist being the strongest of the three. Canellakis was, in fact, outstanding in his playing, with a sweet tone and vivacious accuracy. 

The most interesting music was with the soloists, whose intricate melodies blended so well, while the orchestra mainly was accompaniment, except at crucial loud tutti sections.

Priscilla McLean, Times Union

Magazine feature on Nicholas's upbringing and relationship with his sister, conductor Karina Canellakis. 

Tod Westlake, Hudson Valley Magazine

With Canellakis making the furiously challenging cello role look easy, the end result was a prestissimo romp...

Bruce Hodges, New York Classical Review

It was especially gratifying to hear cellist Nicholas Canellakis again after he had bowled me over with his playing of Leon Kirchner's Music for Cello and Orchestra with the American Symphony Orchestra this past April. Mr. Canellakis played in all three works this evening - a triple treat.

Oberon's Grove

"impassioned," "with striking sensitivity," "the audience seduced by Mr. Canellakis's rich, alluring tone." 

The New York Times

“Superb young soloist”

The New Yorker
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