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Violin Solo Vol 1 / Renate Eggebrecht


Release Date: 01/01/2002 
Label:  Troubadisc   Catalog #: 1424   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian BachMax RegerJohanna SenfterNikos Skalkottas,   ... 
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-KupsaRenate Eggebrecht
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 0 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Two centuries after the death of Johann Sebastian Bach it is clear that no other creative musician has exerted such an inspirational influence on other composers. Countless instrumental works have been based on the almost magical sequence of notes which - at least in German - spell his name, and countless others from all over the world underline his abiding significance.

The Bach work which has inspired the greatest number of notable adaptations has been the Chaconne BWV 1004. Max Reger, for instance, displayed his closeness to his idol in his own Chaconne in G Minor, op. 117, composed in 1910. This, the most substantial and technically demanding of Reger’s preludes and fugues, is a veritable compendium of modern violin
Read more technique, performed here for the first time on CD by the violinist Renate Eggebrecht. The exceptionally varied expressive range of Reger’s compact, dynamic music, and its recurrent dramatic climaxes, demand the utmost concentration on the performer’s part. A supremely difficult work, it was given its first performance in Berlin on 7 October 1911 by Gustav Havemann.

In harmonic terms, the Sonata in G Minor by Johanna Senfter, written in 1925/30, goes a good way further than her Leipzig teacher, Max Reger. In its classical three-movement form, however, it betrays more than a trace of Reger’s Seven Sonatas for solo violin, op. 91, while affinities with Bach’s sonatas and partitas are equally audible. Reger was convinced that his pupil posssessed a rare creative talent. Writing to her father, he stated that “in view of your daughter’s exceptional gift for composition, it would be a sin not to allow it to develop to the full…” In 1948 Reger’s widow co-opted Johanna Senfter onto the committee of the Max Reger Institute and Elsa Reger Foundation. When she died on 11 August 1961 she left an oeuvre comprising 132 works with opus numbers which are only now being rediscovered.

Renate Eggebrecht here gives the first ever recorded performance of Senfter’s Sonata in G Minor.

Nikos Skalkottas consciously based his first mature composition, the Sonata for solo violin of 1925, on J.S. Bach: “I played Bach for hours on end,” he recalled, “and then I began to write music.”

Written in the manner of a suite, the emphatically linear and rhythmically clear-cut structure of this four-movement sonata clearly shows a direct link with Bach.

While deeply marked by Schoenberg and Berg, Skalkottas’s work was always bound up with the musical traditions of his Greek homeland, and works for violin are a constant feature: the composer was himself a superbly trained violin player. In his later years the importance of this Greek representative of the avant-garde became ever clearer. It is brought out in this recording with particular intensity.

“At the age of nineteen I came to Paris, saturated with the classics and romantics, and filled with Richard Strauss and Max Reger, who was quite unknown in Paris,” Arthur Honegger tells us in a conversation with the critic Bernard Gavoty. Honegger shows his allegiance to his ‘great exemplar’, J.S.Bach, in many of his works including the Violin Sonata he wrote during the first year of the Second World War, in 1940, a work which occupies a special place in his oeuvre. The Swiss composer had trained as a violinist, and this work, commissioned by Roman Totenberg in New York, was to be his last sonata as well as being his only chamber work in four movements. It was edited by Ginette Neveu, and from the formal point of view could be described as a partita redolent of neo-baroque spirituality; as such, it reveals the extent to which its composer was familiar with Bach’s own works for solo instrument.

The bold modulations of the Largo -- a finely-wrought sarabande in olden style - could be the work of Reger himself, while the toccata-like Presto-Finale, composed in a style which seems to link Bach with Paganini and Reger, rushes by with passionate intensity, bringing home how deeply Honegger was rooted in the culture of South Germany and Switzerland.

First performed by Christian Ferras in Paris, the sonata displays Honegger’s grateful writing for the solo instrument and a musical vitality which also characterizes the epoch-making works Bach had written for the violin two centuries earlier.

Renate Eggebrecht has already made a name for herself as a violinist with her recordings of Max Reger’s works for solo violin. More recently she and the cellist Friedemann Kupsa have made the first-ever recording of the Sonata by Nikos Skalkottas. These new recordings again display her musical and instrumental command. Rather than mere technical virtuosity, it is her deep understanding of the intellectual structures of these widely differing twentieth-century works, and the intensity with which she brings out the forces pulsating inside them, that lie at the heart of the performances she presents here.
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Works on This Recording

1.
Partita for Violin solo no 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: 5th movement, Chaconne by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin), Renate Eggebrecht (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Notes: This selection is presented in excerpted form. 
2.
Preludes and Fugues (8) for Violin solo, Op. 117: no 4 in G minor "Chaconne" by Max Reger
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin), Renate Eggebrecht (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1909-1912; Germany 
3.
Sonata in G minor, op. 61 by Johanna Senfter
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht (Violin)
4.
Sonata for Violin solo, A/K 69 by Nikos Skalkottas
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin), Renate Eggebrecht (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925; Berlin, Germany 
5.
Sonata for Violin solo by Arthur Honegger
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin), Renate Eggebrecht (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1940; France 
6.
Partita for Violin solo no 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
7.
Sonata for Violin solo in G major, Op. 61 by Johanna Senfter
Performer:  Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925/1930; Germany 

Sound Samples

Violin Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: V. Ciaccona (excerpt)
Preludes and Fugues, Op. 117: No. 4 in G minor, "Chaconne"
Violin Sonata in G minor, Op. 61: I. Gemachlich
Violin Sonata in G minor, Op. 61: II. Sehr ruhig
Violin Sonata in G minor, Op. 61: III. Lustig - Nicht schnell
Sonata for Solo Violin, AK 69: I. Allegro furioso, quasi presto
Sonata for Solo Violin, AK 69: II. Adagietto
Sonata for Solo Violin, AK 69: III. Allegro ritmato
Sonata for Solo Violin, AK 69: IV. Adagio - Allegro molto moderato
Violin Sonata, H. 143: I. Allegro
Violin Sonata, H. 143: II. Largo
Violin Sonata, H. 143: III. Allegretto grazioso
Violin Sonata, H. 143: IV. Presto

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