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Cat. No. CHAN 10526 Price: 0 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 10526 - Russian Works for Violin/ Viola
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Available From: 01 June 2009
Russian Works for Violin/ Viola

A passionate performer and long time Chandos artist, Lydia Mordkovitch, here partnered by the pianist Ian Fountain, presents a rarely heard body of work by two Eastern European composers, the Polish Grazyna Bacewicz and the Romanian George Enescu. A recent recording of Bliss’s Violin Concerto led to such reviews for Lydia as ‘Mordkovitch responds with unflagging conviction and her customary no-holds-barred passion receives alert, warm-hearted support… an attractive and valuable coupling’ (Gramophone) and ‘Lydia Mordkovitch offers a fiery almost gypsy interpretation; very fetching, and not at all wrong. A rewarding release’ (The Times).
Bacewicz was the most prominent Polish female composer of the twentieth century and a renowned violinist who,by contemporary accounts, was surpassed only by Ginette Neveu and David Oistrakh. She left a legacy of over 200 compositions, many of which have never been heard in the West. The Partita was written after a long hospitalisation – the result of a serious automobile accident. Although Bacewicz’s body was immobilised, her musical mind must have been very active. She provided two versions of the work, one for orchestra and the second for violin and piano which we hear on this recording. Bacewicz’s Third Violin Sonata is one of her lesser-known pieces. Bacewicz is frequently labelled a neoclassicist, but she is much more robust and muscular in her approach than many of her contemporaries. George Enescu was a prodigy as both performer and composer and was not yet eighteen when he completed the Second Violin Sonata. His world here is not Romanian, but rather influenced by Brahms, Franck and Fauré; however, the work still exudes a healthy respect for the tradition which he inherited. Both Bacewicz and Enescu studied in Paris, and were professional violinists and pianists who imbued their music with a profound knowledge of their instruments, clearly demonstrated in this new recording.

Reviews

“Lydia Mordkovitch has delved into the nether regions of violin and viola repertoire for this fascinating CD.. The performances are well-characterised in this healthily diverse and exploratory programme.
Telegraph rating ****
Geoffrey Norris

The Telegraph - 10 June 2009

“The Prokofiev-like rhythmic drive and ominously dark tread of Andrei Volkonsky’s Viola Sonata hardly make for easy listening, yet to experience the way Mordkovitch tears into the third movement with seemingly no regards for her instrument’s (or her own) safety puts her in a class apart. The main discovery here is the bewitching solo Violin Sonata in G minor by Ivan Khandoshkin.” 
Julian Haylock

Classic FM Magazine - July 2009

“A collectable selection of Soviet Russian music for violin or viola and piano”
“….she (Mordkovich) is a passionate advocate for everything she plays, her accompanists are excellent, and no collector of Russian/Soviet music would want to miss the chance to encounter Volkonsky’s Viola Sonata, or to thank her and Chandos for the opportunity.”
David Fanning


Gramophone - September 2009

“This is music in a vacuum (if burning to be released); both musically and emotionally it makes for compelling listening. With fine work from the pianists, airy focused and well-balanced sound, and an enlightening essay by Calum MacDonald, this is an outstanding release to those it might concern.”

Colin Anderson

International Record Review - June 2009

“Lydia Mordkovitch, … has programmed some Russian music that deserves wider exposure, and the Volkonsky would be a valuable addition to the viola repertoire. Excellent sound.”

Magil

American Record Guide - November/December 2009

 

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