Hyperion Records

Sonata in G minor 'Il trillo del Diavolo', Bg5
composer
1713 according to Lalande; more probably late 1740s

Recordings
'Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas' (CKD292)
Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas
CKD292  Download only  
'Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas' (CDD22061)
Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas
Buy by post £5.25 CDD22061  2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …  
'Kreisler: Violin Music' (CDA68040)
Kreisler: Violin Music
Buy by post £10.50 CDA68040  Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Details
Track 18 on CDA68040 [15'58]
Movement 1: Larghetto affettuoso
Track 16 on CDD22061 CD1 [4'44] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …
Track 1 on CKD292 [6'33] Download only
Movement 2: Tempo giusto
Track 17 on CDD22061 CD1 [5'43] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …
Track 2 on CKD292 [5'24] Download only
Movement 3: Sogni dell autore: Andante – Allegro assai – Trillo del Diavolo – Andante – Allegro assai – Adagio
Track 18 on CDD22061 CD1 [4'38] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …
Track 3 on CKD292 [5'51] Download only

Sonata in G minor 'Il trillo del Diavolo', Bg5
EnglishFranηaisDeutsch
‘Il trillo del Diavolo’ is the most famous programmatic eighteenth-century violin sonata. Cartier wrote that Tartini ‘saw the Devil at the end of his bed playing the trill that appears in the last movement of the sonata’, and Tartini’s account of the circumstances that supposedly led to its composition appears in J G de Lalande’s Voyage d’un françois en Italie (Paris, 1769):

One night I dreamt that I had made a bargain with the Devil for my soul. Everything went at my command—my novel servant anticipated every one of my wishes. Then the idea struck me to hand him my fiddle and to see what he could do with it. But how great was my astonishment when I heard him play with consummate skill a sonata of such exquisite beauty as surpassed the boldest flight of my imagination. I felt enraptured, transported, enchanted; my breath was taken away; and I awoke. Seizing my violin I tried to retain the sounds that I had heard. But it was in vain. The piece I then composed, the Devil’s Sonata, although the best I ever wrote, how far below the one I heard in my dream!

Lalande added that Tartini composed the work in 1713, which is impossibly early given the style of the music. It probably dates from the late 1740s or later. The trill appears in the driving Allegro assai that repeatedly interrupts a gentle Andante—representing, presumably, the sleeping composer. The work is played here from Cartier’s text; it differs in countless ways from the nineteenth-century edition that is still in widespread use.

from notes by Peter Holman © 1992

Track-specific metadata
Click track numbers opposite to select

Details for CDD22061 disc 1 track 17
Tempo giusto
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-91-43017
Duration
5'43
Recording date
20 June 1990
Recording venue
St Michael's Church, Highgate, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Martin Compton
Recording engineer
Nick Ware
Hyperion usage
  1. Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas (CDA66430)
    Disc 1 Track 17
    Release date: May 1991
    Deletion date: September 2007
    Superseded by CDD22061
  2. Tartini: The Devil's Trill & other violin sonatas (CDD22061)
    Disc 1 Track 17
    Release date: November 2007
    2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1) Please, someone, buy me …
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