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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67804
Recording details: December 2009
City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon & Will Brown
Release date: October 2010
Total duration: 9 minutes 20 seconds

'Sweet melody coupled with passages of virtuosic fire, underpinned with graceful, discreet orchestral writing' (The Observer)

'Hagai Shaham delivers a fastidious and vivacious sympathy to the flow of figures, a real acolyte of an otherwise marginal repertory' (American Record Guide)

'David's slow movements are especially appealing … but you can turn almost anywhere here to find unreserved melodic delight … Hagai Shaham's playing is sweetness itself, and he's secure in every technical detail … under Martyn Brabbins' alert direction, the BBC Scottish players impart a refreshing clarity to David's Mendelssohnian orchestral writing, their attentiveness supported in Andrew Keener's transparent recording … in short, this disc offers an hour of unremitting pleasure which you would be daft to deny yourself' (International Record Review)

'Shaham and the BBC Scottish Symphony (at their most sparkling and sensitive under Martyn Brabbins) play with supreme virtuoso ease throughout … played like this, these concertos constantly delight with their deft invention. Exemplary sound too' (Classic FM Magazine)

'Hagai Shaham pulls off that great virtuoso trick of making the music sound complex, but also making clear that he has every note under his fingers and that he is not sweating it. To non-violinist listeners, the greatest attraction of this music is its lyricism, and Shaham always brings this to the fore, especially in the exquisitely crafted middle movements … excellent playing from the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, who again demonstrate that they are a force to be reckoned with' (MusicWeb International)

Andante and Scherzo capriccioso, Op 16
composer
? 1843

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Andante and Scherzo capriccioso, Op 16, evidently dates from the early 1840s (indeed quite possibly from 1843, the year in which David played Berlioz’s Rêverie et Caprice, which his Op 16 somewhat resembles, under the composer’s baton). This well-balanced diptych offers plenty of opportunities for display, but has more substance than many another bravura showpieces. The Andante begins in D major. After a short and stealthy orchestral introduction the violin announces a tender, lyrical main theme, immediately characterized by the dotted rhythm of its head-motif. It then embellishes it with decorative figuration, but the sweetly melodic character of the music is not disturbed.

The whole movement is really only an introduction, however, to the Scherzo capriccioso, launched by the violin’s final ascent in harmonics from the last bar of the Andante. Cast at the outset in D minor, this is a sort of diabolic—or perhaps impish, for its character suggests mischief rather than harm—tarantella of great velocity and brilliance, recalling Berlioz as much as Mendelssohn, though the orchestral tuttis have a solid, Beethovenian ring to them. There is a lilting second subject, and at the centre of the movement dramatic solo entries (fortissimo on the lowest string) introduce an elegant, contrastingly serenade-like tune in C major closely allied to the Andante theme (though there is no slackening of pace here), which is embellished by increasingly bravura double-stopping, and developed in a volatile and fiery manner. All three subjects are reprised, the serenade-like one now in A major and leading into a barnstorming D major coda whose final fff cadential bars must have been guaranteed to bring down the Gewandhaus.

from notes by Calum MacDonald İ 2010

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