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Emile Jacques-dalcroze: Violin Concertos

Jacques / Zamuruev / Moscow So / Anissimov
Release Date: 02/09/2010 
Label:  Guild   Catalog #: 7336   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Emile Jaques-Dalcroze
Performer:  Rodion Zamuruev
Conductor:  Alexander Anissimov
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 13 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



JAQUES-DALCROZE Violin Concerto. Poème Rodion Zamuruev (vn); Alexander Anissimov, cond; Moscow SO GUILD 7336 (73:26)


Émile Jaques–Dalcroze (1865-1950) may be known to some readers as the founder of Eurythmics, a pedagogical system that spread not only through Europe but also gained a foothold in the United States, where at least one major conservatory still taught it as a required part of the curriculum half a century ago. Jacques Tchamkerten’s booklet notes to Read more Rodion Zamuruev’s readings of Jaques-Dalcroze’s two violin concertos (the second, Poème , having apparently had the designation of Concerto appended to it later) relate that Jaques-Dalcroze had developed relationships with some of the premier soloists of his day, including Henri Marteau (whose bowing studies still aid in some students’ right-arm development) and Eugène Ysaÿe, whom he accompanied for a year. The First Concerto, dedicated to Marteau, opens with a short orchestral interjection, after which the violin takes over commandingly, indulging Jaques-Dalcroze’s late Romantic rhetoric, harmonically deliquescent and melodically ardent. As in Goldmark’s First Concerto, a fugato, in which the violin doesn’t participate, breaks out in the first movement (and continues underneath the violin’s rhetoric on the G string). In fact, the concerto bears melodic similarities to those of Goldmark and Hubay and shares their fresh high spirits (the notes mention one of his Chansons réligieuses as providing a main idea: God dislikes somber faces). If Jaques-Dalcroze didn’t borrow technical ideas from the violinists he knew, he must at least have learned something from them, because the work seems to set the violin and orchestra in a nearly perfect relationship—one that favors the soloist’s idiomatic songfulness but keeps the forces pretty well balanced throughout. At least Rodion Zamuruev’s authoritative readings suggest that Jaques-Dalcroze possessed an intimate knowledge of the instrument for which he wrote. The orchestra plays vigorously and the recorded sound, both clear and balanced, places the violin far enough in front to seem dominant. The slow movement, laying bare a vein of lyricism resembling Bruch’s (perhaps more that of his later works than that of his popular First Concerto), offers the soloist possibilities for lyrical expressivity, of which Zamuruev takes sonorous advantage. The finale, essentially melodic, hardly bristles with difficulties—though it’s demanding and assigns bold statements to the soloist—as do the concerted works of Bruch, Goldmark, Hubay, or even Saint-Saëns.


If the First Concerto sounds open and extroverted, the Poème , by contrast, explores the shadows. Cast in two long movements of about a third-hour each ( dal largo doloroso al doloroso appassionato and dal moderato con ritmo ostinato all’allegro con gioja ), it’s tempting to speculate on how Ysaÿe’s various poem-like compositions for violin and orchestra might have influenced Jaques-Dalcroze (as they surely did influence Chausson’s Poème ). Yet Jaques-Dalcroze’s materials don’t sound as though they’ve been passed through a harmonic filter or had their rhythmic backbone surgically removed. In any case, the work, according to Tchamkerten, took shape around 1909 (the First Concerto, also according to the notes, must have preceded it by about nine years); Dalcroze dedicated it to Ysaÿe. Zamuruev and the orchestra follow the composer through this sea-change into something rich and strange, re-creating the first movement’s rhapsodic atmosphere (replete with sobbing) and the slightly shorter second’s sweep and its occasional suggestions of orgiastic revelry.


For those who enjoy exploring the late-Romantic violin literature, Guild’s new release will be self-recommending, but more general listeners may find themselves caught up in the sympathetic performances and Jaques-Dalcroze’s highly ingratiating manner. Highly recommended.


FANFARE: Robert Maxham
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Works on This Recording

1.
Violin Concerto No. 1, Op. 50 by Emile Jaques-Dalcroze
Performer:  Rodion Zamuruev (Violin)
Conductor:  Alexander Anissimov
Written: 1901 
Date of Recording: 05/2008 
Venue:  Mosfilm Studios, Moscow 
Length: 33 Minutes 17 Secs. 
2.
Violin Concerto No. 2 "Poème" by Emile Jaques-Dalcroze
Performer:  Rodion Zamuruev (Violin)
Conductor:  Alexander Anissimov
Date of Recording: 05/2008 
Venue:  Mosfilm Studios, Moscow 
Length: 39 Minutes 29 Secs. 

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