Beethoven: Op. 12, No. 1; Brahms Op. 79; Stravinsky: Divertimento; Debussy: Sonata in G
In a time when we have grown accustomed to the continual emergence of ever more, newly acclaimed wonder violinists, both male and female, it is all the more striking to hear recordings of the great violinists from just a few decades ago. Unlike today, they possessed much individuality of character, and were recognizably different in their style, technique, tone and musical approach. One of the most distinctive representatives of a violin “school” – of a kind that no longer exists today – was the great Belgian violinist Arthur Grumiaux. He had a smooth, supple tone, a wonderful legato and was famous for his Mozart and his Bach (he was also, incidentally, a highly competent pianist!). Our live concert recording offers a typical example of his art of concert programming, for he here contrasts two Classical sonatas with one work each from the Neoclassical and Impressionist periods. There is early Beethoven, then Brahms, Stravinsky and Debussy – one Classicist and three variants on “Classicism” – and all perfectly rounded off with a Ravel encore that is as virtuosic as it is elegant.