Aureole etc.




Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android


Tudor 7188


Vaughan Williams Symphony 3 etc.


Lyrita New Recording


Lyrita Premiere Recordings

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

 

 

 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones
and printers



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

Support us financially by purchasing this disc from:

Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953)
Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major, Op. 19 (1916/17) [23:49]
Violin Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 63 (1935) [28:00]
Sonata for Solo Violin in D major, Op.115 (1947) [12:42]
Arabella Steinbacher (violin)
Russian National Orchestra/Vasily Petrenko
rec. January 2012 Grand Hall of the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, Moscow (concertos), May 2012 Concertboerderij Valthermond, The Netherlands (Sonata)
PENTATONE CLASSICS PTC 5186 395 [64:27]

Experience Classicsonline



 
If I were able to nominate my Artists of the Year Arabella Steinbacher and Vasily Petrenko would undoubtedly be my choices. Here they collaborate with the Russian National Orchestra. Last year I reviewed Steinbacher’s recording of the Shostakovich First and Second Violin Concertos and remain overjoyed by her superb playing with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons on Orfeo C 687 061 A. For the last few years I have been reporting on a number of Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra concerts with their principal conductor Vasily Petrenko. The progress made by the Liverpool orchestra under the Saint Petersburg-born Maestro has been remarkable. A couple of weeks ago I wrote of his Preston performance of Mahler’s Symphony No. 1Titan’ “I felt privileged just to be in the hall to experience such a magnificent performance that crackled with energy and excitement.”
 
The Violin Concerto No. 1 is a relatively early work composed in 1916/17 and one of the last to be written before Prokofiev left Russia. Prokofiev chooses not to exploit the virtuosic qualities of the violin. Instead soloist and orchestra are more like equal partners. Nevertheless it is an excellent score and I would like to see it programmed far more often. At times it reminds me of the Walton concerto, a work the English composer wrote over twenty years later in 1938. I feel sure he must have known the Prokofiev. In the fascinating Andantino Steinbacher evokes an shiveringly icy Russian chill. I love the way that Munich-born Steinbacher accelerates through the movement’s propulsive climax. The music of the sardonic Scherzo just flashes along. The Finale’s mystery and introspection rises to an explosion of passionate lyricism. The shimmering violin line feels as if Steinbacher has dipped her ‘Booth’ Stradivari (1716) in glistening liquid gold. She imparts proficiency, concentration and assurance of an intensity rarely encountered in this work.
 
From 1935 the Violin Concerto No. 2 tends to be overshadowed by its predecessor. The writing is highly melodic and more overtly romantic than the earlier work. In the opening Allegro moderato one immediately notices the relatively lighter scoring. Steinbacher continues her marvellous form with some vivid and deliciously warm colours. The central Andante with its contrasting textures is gloriously lyrical. Rhythmic and somewhat satirical in character the violin is prominent against the spare instrumental scoring. Steinbacher, engaging and stylish as ever, is complemented by sensitive support from Petrenko.
 
I found little difference in quality between these rewarding Steinbacher/Petrenko accounts of the Prokofiev concertos and the classic recording from soloist Kyung-Wha Chung and the London Philharmonic Orchestra under André Previn. Recorded in 1975 at the Kingsway Hall, London, Chung plays passionately displaying wonderful tone and control. The generous coupling is Chung’s striking Stravinsky Violin Concerto. All on Decca 476 7226.
 
The filler on this PentaTone release is the Sonata for Solo Violi. Originally the three movement Sonata from 1947 was intended for a group of student violinists playing in unison. Co-incidentally only last week I heard a rare performance of the Prokofiev score in its version for unison violins played by the violins of the Hallé Orchestra conducted by Sir Mark Elder at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester. The Sonata was written at an extremely difficult time and was the target for much damaging criticism by the Soviet authorities. I certainly prefer the solo violin version of the sonata compared to the original scoring for unison violins especially with playing as enjoyable as that accomplished by Steinbacher. Yearning melody and brash virtuosity interlace the opening Moderato. Used as the basis for the five variations the theme is simple and rustic in character. Steinbacher makes light work of it.
 
There’s excellent sound quality throughout this hybrid multichannel SACD. PentaTone engineers lay on vividly clear and well balanced sonics. The booklet notes are informative and readable.
 
Michael Cookson
 
Support us financially by purchasing this disc from:


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.