Mutter, Orkis, and Brahms!
The three Brahms violin and piano sonatas are great favorites of mine, perhaps because I have struggled with playing them over the years with various pianists. Brahms composed these 3 sonatas when he was on his summer vacation at Bad Ischl in Austria and also in several other spots over several years. Austria does not lack in wonders of Nature; and Brahms translated these wonders into his great music!
Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis are long-term collaborators. I actually flew from San Francisco to New York City back in 2006 to hear them give 3 concerts in which they performed all the Mozart Sonatas for violin and piano. That was in honor of the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth in 1756!
I have listened to extracts of this CD in its pre-publication format, because it just became commercially available on March 12th. What I have heard I have liked a lot. One hears the usual accuracy of performance, and the many shadings of Brahms’ colors of nature. The dynamics are beautifully varied, as well, and particularly the so-called “Rain” Sonata in G-major is fantastic. Brahms never approved any music for publication with which he was not absolutely satisfied. As such, the Sonata #2, and the 3rd sonata are also wonderful masterpieces, and interpreted in a sensitive way.
Here is a 5-minutes video of Mutter and Orchis talking about Brahms and playing his music: