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Track(s) taken from CDA67547

Suite No 1


Alina Ibragimova (violin)
Recording details: January 2007
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: September 2007
Total duration: 19 minutes 48 seconds


'Their [Sonatas and Suites] muscularity, contrapuntal and harmonic élan and the sense of self-belief they exude show them to be products of a formidable, free-thinking creator. Ibragimoba proves an ideal exponent, her tempi freer and more elastic (and mostly quicker) than Turban's … Ibragimova's greater fluency and flexibility pay greater dividends time and again … [Concerto funebre] Ibragimova's fiercely clear-eyed account—alive to the music's expressive demands as well as its dynamic markings—faces stiff competition but need not fear comparison with any of the dozen or so rival accounts. Her technique is formidable to say the least … Hyperion's couplings and recording quality, to say nothing of the excellent Britten Sinfonia, deserve a share in the plaudits. Recommended' (Gramophone)

'An auspicious and admirably adventurous recording debut for one of the most exciting of today's young violinists, Alina Ibragimova. With the Britten Sinfonia strings providing incisive support, she steers a committed yet level-headed course through this emotive work, bringing plenty of tonal variety and expressive subtlety to play on Hartmann's deeply felt music. These characteristics also colour her brilliant playing of the solo works, with their echoes of everything from Bach to Bartók' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Wonderfully assured … the way in which the playing of the Britten Sinfonia dovetails with hers is always compelling. Ibragimova pairs the concerto with the solo violin suites and sonatas … in these wonderfully fluent pieces, it is perfectly married with the contrapuntal ideas that Hartmann clearly derived from Bach's solo violin works; Ibragimova conveys their crispness and clarity to perfection' (The Guardian)

'Crisply and incisively argued … musicianship of the highest order' (International Record Review)

'She is Russian, 23, and a scorchingly good violinist. This is her CD recital debut; always a testing occasion, but especially for young violinists. What repertoire should be chosen? … Ibragimova has chosen the third route, towards serious and neglected repertory … Hartmann had his youthful iconoclasms, but the agony of the Second World War brought out the tragic artist in him … to the adagio section [Concerto funebre] she brings passion without mawkishness; and the control wielded at high altitudes is phenomenal. The Britten Sinfonia, led by Jacqueline Shave, make fluent sounds too, amplified by Hyperion's lively recording—close to the mike, but never in your face … Ibragimova is marvellously sturdy and exact, especially when making perilous leaps from exposed places. And she plays with such commitment and feeling … as for her next disc, the doors are wide open. But whatever Ibragimova plays, it'll be worth hearing' (The Times)

'An auspicious recording debut by the 22-year-old violinist Alina Ibragimova. Hartmann's four unaccompanied violin works … are not for the faint-hearted executant. They are, however, compelling, brilliant pieces, speaking of the sharp intellect and wide-ranging imagination of a composer who was at least the equal of Hindemith … Ibragimova brings to each piece a formidable technical and musical command, her sound always vividly coloured, her response the right mix of spontaneous passion and practised control' (The Sunday Times)

'As her performance of Hartmann's Concerto proves, Ibragimova is capable of delivering the bold, knotty statements upon which these works' success depends, with the appropriate Affekt. For example, in the First Suite, she transforms herself from a cheerful contrapuntist, in the movement entitled 'Fuga: Munter', to a relaxed chanteuse in the penultimate 'Dreiteilege Liedform', to an edgy knife thrower with Bartók-like fragments in the final Ciaconna. And the demands on her flexibility seem almost endless. The precocious Alina Ibragimova offers a program of engaging and thoughtful works that she's approached with an equally engaging, interpretive and masterfully commanding musical personality that brooks no opposition. Strongly recommended to violinists, to violin aficionados, and to general listeners of all predilections' (Fanfare, USA)

'Hartmann's invention is consistently inventive—and of real substance—and benefits from Alina Ibragimova's interpretative focus and technical security: she has clearly taken huge trouble to get inside this music and give performances of insight, dedication and bravura. Each movement emerges as an emotional testimony of Hartmann's wide-ranging stylistic craft … Ibragimova and the conductor-less Britten Sinfonia make a very strong case for Concerto funebre (1939, revised in 1959)—certainly the most convincing account this listener has heard … what impresses with this Hyperion account is how eloquent Hartmann's music is, how deeply felt it is, and how electrifying the frenetic third movement is—and wonderfully clarified in this performance … and how the composer’s emotionalism and rhythmic ingenuity is absorbed into a convincing whole. This is music with direct connection to the listener. If you don’t know the Concerto (or, indeed, any of the music here—it has taken many decades for the solo-violin works to get even a foothold on the repertoire) then Ibragimova and the Britten Sinfonia's wild-eyed enthusiasm and musical consideration—superbly recorded—could well be the best way to enter Hartmann's specific but universal world. A revelation!' (Classical Source)
Suite No 1 is Baroque in orientation. It opens with a lively two-voice Canon on a sinuous subject marked by prominent dotted rhythms. Half way through this quite extensive movement the subject re-enters in its original form, prompting a further bout of canonic development, and the proceedings end with an ad libitum cadenza-like passage leading to a final statement of the subject. A pert fugue follows. Marked Munter (cheerful), this is more orthodox in layout and rhythmically regular than the fugues in the sonatas, getting into a brief stretto towards the end. The third movement is a Rondo whose main theme is full of precipitous leaps while the strongly syncopated episodes hint at a Bartókian ‘folk-fiddling’ style. The fourth movement is headed Dreiteilige Liedform (three-part song form), which adequately describes its layout, with a broad, songful melody dominating the outer sections and enclosing a passionately flowing middle section. The finale, which follows without a break, is a Ciaccona based on the heavily accented subject announced at the outset. In the tradition of Bach’s great D minor Chaconne, though on a much less ample scale, the movement proceeds by accumulating motion in progessively smaller note-values and thus gains in brilliance until an effervescent coda that finally compresses the subject, by diminution, into a single bar to make a terse concluding figure.

from notes by Calum MacDonald © 2007

La Suite no 1 est ouvertement tournée vers le baroque. Elle commence par un enjoué Canon à deux voix sur un sujet sinueux marqué par de saillants rythmes pointés. À mi-parcours de ce mouvement des plus extensifs, le sujet est réintroduit sous sa forme originale, déclenchant un nouveau développement canonique; puis les choses s’achèvent sur un passage ad libitum de type cadenza qui débouche sur une ultime énonciation du sujet. S’ensuit une fugue effrontée: marquée Munter (alerte), elle présente un plan davantage orthodoxe, un rythme plus régulier que les fugues des sonates et se lance, vers la fin, dans une brève strette. Le troisième mouvement est un Rondo dont le thème principal regorge de sauts précipités, cependant que les épisodes fortement syncopés font allusion au style «violonistico-populaire» de Bartók. Le quatrième mouvement s’intitule Dreiteilige Liedform (forme «Lied» à trois parties), un titre qui reflète bien son plan: une ample mélodie chantante domine les sections extrêmes, enclosant une section centrale passionnément fluide. Le finale, qui lui emboîte le pas, est une Ciaconna fondée sur le sujet lourdement accentué du début. Dans la tradition de la grande Chaconne en ré mineur de Bach, mais avec bien moins d’envergure, ce mouvement gagne en élan grâce à des valeurs de notes de plus en plus petites et monte en éclat jusqu’à une coda effervescente qui, par diminution, comprime finalement le sujet en une seule mesure pour obtenir une laconique figure conclusive.

extrait des notes rédigées par Calum MacDonald © 2007
Français: Hypérion

Die Suite Nr. 1 ist barock orientierte. Sie beginnt mit einem lebhaften zweistimmigen Kanon über ein sich windendes Thema, das sich durch markante punktierte Rhythmen auszeichnet. Halbwegs in diesem relativ ausgedehnten Satz tritt das Thema wieder in seiner Originalgestalt ein, was erneute kanonische Verarbeitung veranlasst, und er schließt mit einer kadenzartigen ad libitum-Passage, die zu einer letzten Aufstellung des Themas führt. Es folgt eine kecke Fuge, Munter, die in ihrer Anlage orthodoxer und rhythmisch regelmäßiger ist als die Fugen in den Sonaten und gegen Ende kurz in Engführung behandelt wird. Der dritte Satz ist ein Rondo, dessen Hauptthema mit prekären Sprüngen gespickt ist, während die synkopierten Episoden an Bartóks „Volksgeigen“-Stil erinnern. Der vierte Satz heißt Dreiteilige Liedform, was seine Anlage angemessen beschreibt: eine breite, liedhafte Melodie dominiert die Eckteile und umrahmt einen leidenschaftlich fließenden Mittelteil. Das Finale, das ohne Pause folgt, ist eine Ciaconna, die auf dem stark akzentuierten Thema basiert, das am Anfang aufgestellt wird. In der Tradition der großen d-moll-Chaconne von Bach, wenn auch in bescheidenerem Ausmaß, setzt sich der Satz durch immer kleinere Notenwerte nach und nach in Bewegung und wird zunehmend brillanter bis in der spritzigen Coda schließlich das Thema durch Diminution in einen Takt zusammengepresst wird, um den Satz mit einer prägnanten Figur abzuschließen.

aus dem Begleittext von Calum MacDonald © 2007
Deutsch: Renate Wendel

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