Ludwig van BEETHOVEN
Violin Sonata in A, Op. 47,
Witold LUTOSLAWSKI (1913-1994)
Partita for Violin and
Alban Beikircher (violin);
Mathias Huth (piano).
Arte Nova 74321
Eye-catching programming from two young artists at super-budget price seems
at first glance to be too good to be true. Coupling one of the best loved
of all violin sonatas with a Lutoslawski filler is bound to raise some eyebrows,
and certainly whets the appetite.
Unfortunately, the promise is far from realised. The dry recording only serves
to emphasise Beikircher's abrasive tone quality. The opening violin chords
of the Beethoven, often problematic, are here just uncomfortable. Throughout
the performance the duo is best suited to the more lyrical passages, which
only serves to put into relief the literal way they stomp through anything
remotely dynamic. Accents are mostly harsh and unsubtle and any wit in this
sonata is completely missed. There are too many other recommendable versions
for this amateurish account to be considered seriously.
Whilst Beikircher find some lyricism in the Lutoslawski's Partita,
he completely misses the intensity of the Largo (the most substantial movement).
Go to Mutter's account of the version with orchestra on DG 423 696-2 (coupled
with Chain 2 and a simply stunning version of the Stravinsky Violin Concerto)
for a real musical experience.
Disappointing in the extreme.