…Mermagen explored the virtues of rock-solid intonation allied to almost indecently sensuous phrasing.
Laurence Vittes, Los Angeles Times
Mermagen’s refined sound started the moment his bow hit the string.
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Other highlights, including Susanne Mentzer singing two wonderful French songs written to be sung with piano and cello, beautifully executed by pianist Ann Schein and cellist Michael Mermagen. Even more ravishing was Élégie, a lovely lament by Massenet, which found Mermagen singing the tune first like a world-class tenor, then harmonizing seductively with Mentzer’s voice.
Harvey Steimen, Seen & Heard Festival Review
Mr. Mermagen handled the virtuoso cello part with aplomb…. displayed impeccable intonation and a superb sense of ensemble.
The News & Observer, Raleigh, NC
Cellist Michael Mermagen was heard in a mystically beautiful passage…demonstrating a golden lyrical and warm sound…
The Saginaw News
Cellist Michael Mermagen portrayed a depth of emotion usually reserved for vocalists.
Savannah Morning News
The ‘cellist flowed well with the many moods …and performed some devilish runs with some impressive high-register virtuosity.
Paul Caluori, Montecito Life
The second composition on the program was Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme, in effect a concerto for solo cello. Michael Mermagen, an associate professor of cello and chamber music at The Catholic University of America, demonstrated his mastery of the instrument, his love of the music, and his artistic understanding of the seemingly sometimes simple but always complex composition that is Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations. The Philharmonic was a perfect partner for the evening’s partnership, for it always provided a musical framework in which the guest artist could soar. A curious phenomenon of time distortion that can arise when a performance is at the highest level appeared for me in the penultimate variation and stretched into the beginning of the final variation.
John Thompson, The Prince Georgian Blogspot
The Beethoven quartet…. was beautifully played. The excellence of the ensemble was all the more remarkable in that the cellist, Michael Mermagen, stepped in at the last moment (almost literally) to substitute for the ailing Matt Haimovitz.
Kenneth Brown, News-Press, Santa Barbara
…cellist Michael Mermagen, whose slow movement in the quartet was simply gorgeous.
Jonathan Turner, The Litchfield County Times
…Mermagen (cello)…an uplifting, beautifully nuanced Mozart Piano Quartet in G Minor.
Harvey Steinman, The Aspen Times
The cellist plays with gorgeous tone.
The Globe-Times, Bethlehem, PA
Michael Mermagen’s cello sang out beautifully in the Lento…The Aspen players delivered a finely articulated, expressively shaped account of Beethoven’s String Trio in D Major, Op. O9, No. 2…The dark lyricism of the Andante emerged with particular effectiveness.
Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun