Duo Åstrand/Salo follow up their first installment of sonatas by Friedrich Kuhlau with a selection of some of the composer’s most impressive works for violin and piano. Friedrich Kuhlau fled to Denmark as a young man and with his strong cosmopolitan personality became a loner- and at the same time a key figure- in the Danish Golden Age. In 1813 Kuhlau was granted Danish citizenship and the honorary title of Royal Court Musician. Included on this release is what some consider the first Danish violin sonata in the Romantic style, a work that glances towards the composer’s idol Beethoven but contains plenty of individual spice and allure. It is followed by sonatas in all but name, the Trois Duos brillants from late in Kuhlau’s career.Read more They are brilliant, as the title suggests – three varied, evocative snapshots of the great cosmopolitan of Denmark’s Golden Age.
Kuhlau’s music sounds thoroughly Germanic, and he makes no attempt to develop a Danish national style. He is definitely one of the best composers of his era, though; and it wouldn’t be until Schumann in the early 1850s that anyone would write better for violin and piano.