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Spohr: Reisesonate

Parrino / Fedrigotti
Release Date: 08/12/2014 
Label:  Stradivarius   Catalog #: 33933   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Louis Spohr
Performer:  Michele FedrigottiFrancesco Parrino
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 5 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



SPOHR Duos concertants : In g, op. 95; in F, op. 96, “Reisesonate.” Grand duo concertant, op. 112. 6 Duettinen “Elegisch und humoristisch,” op. 127 Francesco Parrino (vn); Michele Fedrigotti (pn) STRADIVARIUS 33933 (2 CDs: 125:16)

Read more /> Louis Spohr was the leading German violinist of his day, and wrote a large amount of music for his instrument, including no fewer than 15 concertos. He was not a pianist, however, and wrote no music for violin and piano until 1836, when he was past the age of 50. In that year, after the death of his first wife, the harpist Dorette Scheidler, he married Marianne Pfeiffer, a pianist, and this spurred his interest in writing for the piano. Within a year he had written his three Duos concertantes , all of them four-movement sonatas for violin and piano all but in name. He returned to the medium in 1843 with his six pieces, op. 127, subtitled “Songs without Words” in an obvious tribute to Mendelssohn, whom Spohr admired and befriended. This is the premiere recording of the first two Duos and of the Duettinen ; the Grand duo , op. 112, has recently been recorded by Ingolf Turban for CPO ( Fanfare 36:6).


The First Duo, op. 95, opens arrestingly with octaves in the violin; its first movement has a striking modulation to B Major in the midst of the second theme group. The Adagio in E? Major is a study in double stops; the third and fourth movements are a scherzo and an Allegretto in G Major. The Second Duo, op. 96, is programmatic, its full title being Nachklänge einer Reise nach Dresden und in die Sächsische Schweiz , or “Reminiscences of a journey in Dresden and through Saxon Switzerland.” It opens with a horn call, which dominates the first movement. The scherzo, placed second, is characterized by repeated-note figures, and its trio prominently features a circle-of-fifths passage unmistakably reminiscent of Handel’s Passacaglia. The third movement, “Catholic Church,” quotes the Dresden Amen.


It is not entirely clear why the third Duo is titled “Grand duo,” although it is more serious-minded than the first two; its first movement is one of Spohr’s most effective sonata-form movements. The Sechs Duettinen , op. 127 are pretty, if not as consequential as the three sonatas; the slow pieces are more sentimental than elegiac, and No. 3 is a scherzo. The group was clearly intended as a cycle, as the first and last pieces are in the same key, E? Major, and the last is titled “Finale.”


Francesco Parrino plays a c. 1800 Gagliano violin—presumably with gut strings—and pianist Michele Fedrigotti plays an 1849 Broadwood. A certain lack of sweetness in Parrino’s tone may be due to his equipment or to a less than 100-percent reliable left hand, but in all these are creditable performances, and the lack of availability of other recordings of these significant works by the most important violinist-composer of the 19th century makes this set self-recommending. Essential for Spohr collectors.


FANFARE: Richard A. Kaplan
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Works on This Recording

1.
Duo Concertante for violin & piano in G minor, Op. 95 by Louis Spohr
Performer:  Michele Fedrigotti (Piano), Francesco Parrino (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1836 
Venue:  Chiesa di Santo Stefano, Bizzozero, Vare 
Length: 12 Minutes 24 Secs. 
2.
Duo Concertante for violin & piano in F major ("Nachklänge einer Reise nach Dresden und in die sächi by Louis Spohr
Performer:  Michele Fedrigotti (Piano), Francesco Parrino (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1836 
Venue:  Chiesa di Santo Stefano, Bizzozero, Vare 
Length: 27 Minutes 17 Secs. 
3.
Duo Concertante for violin & piano in E major, Op. 112 by Louis Spohr
Performer:  Michele Fedrigotti (Piano), Francesco Parrino (Violin)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1837 
Venue:  Chiesa di Santo Stefano, Bizzozero, Vare 
Length: 11 Minutes 56 Secs. 
4.
Duets (6) for violin & piano ("Elegisch und humoristisch;" "Lieder ohne Worte") Op. 127 by Louis Spohr
Performer:  Francesco Parrino (Violin), Michele Fedrigotti (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1843 
Venue:  Chiesa di Santo Stefano, Bizzozero, Vare 
Length: 33 Minutes 12 Secs. 

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