Here, for your enjoyment is a new recording of the Franck Violin and piano Sonata and the Chausson work called ‘Concert’.
Concert in D major for piano, violin and string quartet, Op. 21, with the Salagon Quartet
Violin Sonata in A major
Performed by Isabelle Faust (violin), and Alexander Melnikov (piano)
Regular chamber partners Isabelle Faust and Alexander Melnikov, playing on period instruments, shine new light on two major works of chamber music written at the beginning of the 20th century.
The ‘Sonata’ is Franck’s most frequently played and recorded work. Premiered by Eugène Ysaÿe, in Brussels on 16 December 1886, a judge as shrewd as Alfred Cortot was lucid enough to make an arrangement for solo piano. Since then it has been transcribed for nearly every instrument on the planet and is a permanent staple of the repertoire.
Although it is devoid of passages in double stopping or pizzicato, the violin part, replete with treacherous chromatic twists and turns, nonetheless poses formidable difficulties of intonation for the player.
Franck’s influence on Ernest Chausson’s ‘Concert’ is unmistakable. The work blends elements of piano and string quintet styles and here regains a freshness which delicately illuminates, in the hands of Faust and Melnikov.
Completed a year after the Symphony in B flat, and again written for Ysaÿe, the ‘Concert’ asserts its roots in the heritage of Rameau and Couperin, thus foreshadowing Debussy’s ‘Hommage à Rameau’ (1905) and Ravel’s ‘Le Tombeau de Couperin’ (1917).
Gramophone Magazine wrote:
“[Chausson] Faust and the quartet…conjures and maintains a spellbinding, moonlit atmosphere. [Franck] equally impressive…[Faust] finds intense expressivity in restraint and emotional directness.”
Here are Faust and Melnikov in the music of Cesar Franck: