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Jascha Heifetz Plays Great Violin Sonatas

Heifetz,Jascha
Release Date: 03/25/2014 
Label:  Rca   Catalog #: 5440152   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Edvard GriegGabriel FauréJohannes BrahmsOttorino Respighi,   ... 
Performer:  Brooks SmithJascha HeifetzEmanuel BayLillian Steuber,   ... 
Number of Discs: 9 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

R E V I E W S

Beethoven Sonatas:

The transfers, of recordings made between 1947 and 1960, are of the highest quality, revealing the very essence of Heifetz's art. In the three early Op. 12 Sonatas, we hear that flinty intonation which, fusing with the mere caress of the bow, creates unique finesse for the brio of the opening of No. 1 and the gleeful quick changes of register in the first movement of No. 3. One is reminded, too, that unlike so many of his Juilliard-trained successors to virtuosity, there is never any concession to the primacy of polished sound alone: it is always the nature of the instrument itself, the grain of its wood, the pliability of its strings, the tension of the horsehair,
Read more which is brought to bear on the nature of the interpretation itself.

It is the Third, E flat major, Sonata which points, too, the happiness of Heifetz's partnership with his pianist, Emmanuel Bay. Overriding the slight and inevitable dryness of recording, there is a sweetness, a simplicity, a quicksilver response which at times achieves the rare feat of enabling the ear to apprehend both players' contributions simultaneously. In the slow movement Heifetz, as if acknowledging where Beethoven's heart lay in this Sonata, is cool, almost distanced from the piano's dominant role.

Heifetz as miniaturist makes himself known in the Fourth Sonata (Op. 23) and in the very last one (Op. 96). For the C minor Sonata, Beethoven's first in a minor key, he refuses the temptation to don the tragic mask, leaning almost nonchalantly on the accents and upbeats of the first movement, and treating the Andante scherzoso with a piquant near-minimalism.

The two big sonatas, on the other hand, are boldy characterized. The Spring is, typically, one of the fastest in the business: this is a true driving Allegro, with the sap rising fast through Heifetz's intense vibrato and his firm, heavy pressure on the down-bow. He makes it clear that molto espressivo does not mean motto adagio in the slow movement: this, too, is marked by a steady sense of direction, with each carefully shaded sustained note carrying through the momentum of the whole.

-- Gramophone [1/1988]

Karen Khachaturian Sonata:

[Heifetz is] suited to the early Sonata of Karen Khachaturian, who is Aram Khachaturian's nephew. On the evidence of this work, like his uncle, Karen writes in an outgoing, vigorous, uncomplicated style, which Heifetz plays in a cheerful, extrovert fashion.

-- Gramophone

Bach Sonatas and Partitas:

Fan as I am of original instruments and the whole movement toward (rather than “of“) authentic performance-practice, I nonetheless was thrilled to hear Heifetz playing Bach once again. If you want a more motivic and détaché, less long-lined and legato approach, you could try Sergiu Luca's set. If you want soul, Heifetz is still the gentleman to see, or rather hear, and the digital resurrection efforts of Nathaniel Johnson and James Nichols permit you to do just that with a minimum of distraction... The timings are generous, all three sonatas appearing on Disc 1, all three partitas on Disc 2. Heifetz's brilliance appears on both.

-- Edward Strickland, FANFARE [7/1988]

Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 2 in G major, Op. 13 by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Norway 
Date of Recording:   
2.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1 in A major, Op. 13 by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1875-1876; France 
Date of Recording: 1936 
Length: 21 Minutes 9 Secs. 
3.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 3 in C minor, Op. 45 by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886-1887; Norway 
Date of Recording: 02/03/1936 
Venue:  Studio no 3, RCA Studios, New York City 
Length: 22 Minutes 15 Secs. 
4.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1 in G major, Op. 78 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1879; Austria 
Date of Recording: 02/13/1936 
Venue:  Studio no 3, RCA Studios, New York City 
Length: 24 Minutes 43 Secs. 
5.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in B minor by Ottorino Respighi
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1916-1917; Rome, Italy 
6.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1 by Ernest Bloch
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1920; USA 
7.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 2 "Poème mystique" by Ernest Bloch
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1924; USA 
8.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in G minor, Op. 1 by Karen Khachaturian
Performer:  Lillian Steuber (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USSR 
Notes: Karen Khachaturian (1920-2011) was the nephew of composer Aram Khachaturian. 
9.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1, Op. 2 by Howard Ferguson
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Lillian Steuber (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1931 
10.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 2 in A major, Op. 100 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886; Austria 
11.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 3 in D minor, Op. 108 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  William Kapell (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886-1888; Austria 
12.
Sonatina for Violin and Piano in G minor, D 408/Op. 137 no 3 by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1816; Vienna, Austria 
13.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in E flat major, Op. 18 by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Germany 
14.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in G minor by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1916-1917; France 
Date of Recording: 1950 
Length: 11 Minutes 24 Secs. 
15.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1 in D minor, Op. 75 by Camille Saint-Saëns
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Brooks Smith (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; France 
Date of Recording: 1950 
Length: 21 Minutes 5 Secs. 
16.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 1 in D major, Op. 12 no 1 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1797-1798; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 12/16/1947 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 16 Minutes 43 Secs. 
17.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 2 in A major, Op. 12 no 2 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1797-1798; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 12/17/1947 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 15 Minutes 36 Secs. 
18.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 3 in E flat major, Op. 12 no 3 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1797-1798; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/15/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 17 Minutes 45 Secs. 
19.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 4 in A minor, Op. 23 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/15/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 18 Minutes 14 Secs. 
20.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 5 in F major, Op. 24 "Spring" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800-1801; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 12/17/1947 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 17 Minutes 20 Secs. 
21.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 6 in A major, Op. 30 no 1 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1801-1802; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/16/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 21 Minutes 39 Secs. 
22.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 7 in C minor, Op. 30 no 2 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1801-1802; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 04/06/1950 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 23 Minutes 34 Secs. 
23.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 8 in G major, Op. 30 no 3 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1801-1802; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/16/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 17 Minutes 16 Secs. 
24.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 9 in A major, Op. 47 "Kreutzer" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Brooks Smith (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1802-1803; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/1960 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 31 Minutes 3 Secs. 
25.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 10 in G major, Op. 96 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Emanuel Bay (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1812; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 22 Minutes 52 Secs. 
26.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in B flat major, K 378 (317d) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1779; Salzburg, Austria 
Date of Recording: 12/08/1954 
Venue:  Radio Recorders, Hollywood, California 
Length: 16 Minutes 38 Secs. 
27.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in B flat major, K 454 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1784; Vienna, Austria 
28.
Duo for 2 Violins in D major, Op 3 no 6/G 61 by Luigi Boccherini
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Gregor Piatigorsky (Cello)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1761; Vienna, Austria 
29.
Sonata for Violin solo no 1 in G minor, BWV 1001 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, California 
Length: 16 Minutes 52 Secs. 
30.
Sonata for Violin solo no 2 in A minor, BWV 1003 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, California 
Length: 20 Minutes 29 Secs. 
31.
Sonata for Violin solo no 3 in C major, BWV 1005 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Date of Recording: 10/1952 
Venue:  RCA Studios, Hollywood, California 
Length: 19 Minutes 42 Secs. 
32.
Sonata for Violin and Basso Continuo in D major, HWV 371/Op. 1 no 13 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Emanuel Bay (Piano)
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1750; London, England 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Terrific collection - great remastering September 25, 2013 By Arthur Leonard (New York, NY) See All My Reviews "These are classic sonata recordings by one of the greatest violinists of the 20th century, so what could be bad? Actually, it would be easy to screw up this kind of a release with poor remasterings of the original material, but BMG has done a good job and the recordings, dating from the 1940s to the 1960s, come up sounding fresh and clean. The one judgment I would question is including the Bach unaccompanied Sonatas but not the Partitas, presumably because the box is labeled Great Violin Sonatas. Somebody at BMG who is likely an ignoramous about classical music devised this programming. Anybody who wants Heifetz's recording of the Sonatas will also want the Partitas. It would have resulted in a 10 CD set, which would have been within the range of their other recent boxes. Apart from that, this is terrific. And I hope they plan to release the Partitas in another set." Report Abuse
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