Notes and Editorial Reviews
Sara Chang brings her stunning virtuosity to Dvorák's magnificent (and inexplicably underperformed if not under-recorded) Violin Concerto. Even as she plays with impressive technical finesse and brilliance, it's also clear that she's got the music in her heart as well as her fingers--evident in her lovingly sensitive rendition of the first movement's joyously lyrical second theme, and in the Adagio's soothing lullaby melody. But Chang also displays plenty of fire and spirit in the more animated portions, especially Dvorák's athletically dancing finale. Still, Josef Suk provides more authentic-sounding rhythmic flair, along with an affectionate, homespun lyricism that so suits the music, even if he doesn't fire off virtuoso
sparks the way Chang does. Colin Davis and the London Symphony offer a fresh and idiomatic rendition of the orchestral accompaniment. Unfortunately, the orchestral recording is a bit diffuse, with Chang positioned quite a bit closer than you would hear in a concert hall.
Chang, Leif Ove Andsnes, Alexander Kerr, Wolfram Christ, and Georg Faust give a lively and rhythmically pointed performance of Dvorák's expansive Piano Quintet No. 2. The outer movements display infectious energy, while the somewhat faster-than-usual tempo in the Adagio keeps the melancholy on the light side but shirks none of Dvorák's heartfelt melodiousness. The recording presents a sharper focus and more natural perspective than that for the concerto. In all, it's a novel and enjoyable coupling well worth your consideration--especially if you have neither of these works in your collection.
--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com Read less
Works on This Recording
Concerto for Violin in A minor, Op. 53 by Antonín Dvorák
Sarah Chang (Violin)
Sir Colin Davis
London Symphony Orchestra
Written: 1879-1880; Bohemia
Date of Recording: 06/2001
Venue: Watford Colosseum, London, England
Length: 33 Minutes 45 Secs.
Quintet for Piano and Strings no 2 in A major, Op. 81/B 155 by Antonín Dvorák
Wolfram Christ (Viola),
Sarah Chang (Violin),
Georg Faust (Cello),
Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano),
Alexander Kerr (Violin)
Written: 1887; Bohemia
Date of Recording: 05/2002
Venue: Konzerthaus, Mozartsaal, Vienna, Austria
Length: 38 Minutes 8 Secs.
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): I. Allegro ma non troppo - Quasi moderato
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): II. Adagio ma non troppo
Violin Concerto in A minor B108 (Op. 53): III. Finale (Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo)
Piano Quintet in A major B155 (Op. 81): I. Allegro ma non tanto
Piano Quintet in A major B155 (Op. 81): II. Dumka (Andante con moto)
Piano Quintet in A major B155 (Op. 81): III. Scherzo (Furiant). Molto vivace
Piano Quintet in A major B155 (Op. 81): IV. Finale (Allegro)
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