There’s something about musical families that just plain enjoyable to record with. Russian-Dutch Alexander Warenberg is someone from such a family: there are many Warenbergs in our classical music industry, all with great talents. And so, together with extraordinary pianist Giuseppe Guarrera, Alexander set out to record two behemoths of sonatas by Dmitri Shostakovich and Sergei Rachmaninoff. Location Choosing the location was a simple task: we just needed to find the perfect place to record Alexander’s beautiful Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume cello built in 1845, that also had a great concert grand piano for Giuseppe. We settled on the Kleine Zaal of the Muziekgebouw Eindhoven in the south of the country. And if you see the image below, you’ll understand why. The Kleine Zaal (“small hall”) of the Muziekgebouw Eindhoven, with a pristine Steinway Model D concert grand piano. The acoustics of the place are just absolutely superb, and we’re already stoked for our next recording here, which will be with pianist Helena Basilova. But first, recording the extraordinary Giuseppe Guarrera and Alexander Warenberg. Keeping things simple For this recording, we kept our recording setup really simple, with just our standard OOA (Optimized Omnidirectional Array) of Sonodore RCM-401 microphones. These were connected to a custom Rens Heijnis 60V power supply by Furutech Custom Microphone Cables designed for us. I personally enjoy placing the musicians facing each other. This way, you can put your microphones in between them, and by just varying their distance to the microphones, you can adjust the balance without having to resort to close-miking and mixing it in later. This results in fewer phasing problems and overall degradation of the sound. Pianist Giuseppe Guarrera at the keys of the immaculate Steinway Model D. As always, we connected everything to our Merging Technologies HAPI converter running at 352.8 kHz 32 bits. This will give us plenty of editing space once we get back to the studio. Speaking of, we can’t wait to edit and master this one!