- Complete Works for Violin
This two-CD set offers all the works that Prokofiev wrote for the violin as solo instrument.
These works are performed by violin soloist, James Ehnes, and he is accompanied by the BBC Philharmonic conducted by Gianandrea Noseda and by the pianist Andrew Armstrong, with whom he has previously made a number of highly acclaimed recordings.
The musical selections are:
Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major, Op. 19, with the BBC Philharmonic, Gianandrea Noseda conducting.
Violin Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 63, with the BBC Philharmonic, Gianandrea Noseda conducting.
Sonata for Two Violins in C Major, Op. 56
with Amy Schwartz Moretti (violin)
Sonata in D major for solo violin, Op. 115
Violin Sonata No. 1 in F minor, Op. 80, with Andrew Armstrong (piano)
Violin Sonata No. 2 in D major, Op. 94a, with Andrew Armstrong (piano)
Five Melodies for Violin and Piano, Op. 35b, with Andrew Armstrong (piano)
Performed by James Ehnes (violin)
Violinist Amy Schwartz Moretti joins Mr. Ehnes in the Sonata for Two Violins.
Prokofiev’s First Violin Concerto did not receive its first performance until 1923. There is much charm and gentle tunefulness in this work, written during a comparatively lyrical period in Prokofiev’s compositional life, though it is not without several groups of complex violin passages, especially in the brilliant central scherzo.
The Second Concerto was premiered in 1935, and it is somewhat reminiscent of the ballet Romeo and Juliet. The concerto contains many beautiful themes, and finale is notable for the use of the bass drum, which adds drama to the work.
The other works on this album are the Violin Sonatas, which are closely associated with the violinist David Oistrakh, with whom the composer formed a close professional association.
David Oistrakh wrote:
‘This was truly great music, and indeed for sheer beauty and depth nothing to equal it had been written for the violin for many a decade.’
The Five Melodies are charming transcriptions by Prokofiev of his Five Songs, Op. 35.
Here is the Allegro con brio from Prokofiev’s second violin sonata, as recorded by James Ehnes (violin) and Andrew Armstrong (piano).
And next, here is Janine Jansen performing the Prokofiev Violin Concerto No. 2, Op. 63: (One of my great favorites)
Finally, here is James Ehnes, in a terrific recording where he is performing the music of J. S. Bach:
Tags: James Ehnes, Prokofiev, Concertos, Sonatas, Bach