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Track(s) taken from CDA67833

Sonata for solo violin, WV83

January 1927; Paris & London

Tanja Becker-Bender (violin)
Recording details: April 2010
Beethovensaal, Hannover, Germany
Produced by Ludger Böckenhoff
Engineered by Ludger Böckenhoff
Release date: February 2011
Total duration: 11 minutes 38 seconds

Cover artwork: The Broken Key (1938) by Paul Klee (1879-1940)
Sprengel Museum, Hannover / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'Tanja Becker-Bender can muster both impressively full tone and a not inappropriate astringent edge. No mean virtuoso, her previous release for Hyperion was an acclaimed set of Paganini Caprices and it helps that the company provides a helpful booklet-note that does not over-egg the contextual pudding … worth a punt' (Gramophone)

'The young German violinist Tanja Becker-Bender offers absolutely stunning playing throughout this warmly recorded disc. She makes light work of the formidable technical challenges … her exemplary partnership with Markus Becker recaps equally enthralling musical rewards … the Suite is projected with great charm and elegance. Perhaps most impressive of all is their performance of the Second Sonata. Here Becker-Bender and Becker face competition from the highly rated recording by Gidon Kremer and Oleg Maisenberg on Warner. Yet this new version fizzes with an even greater degree of propulsion and exuberance … altogether this is an outstanding release that can be confidently recommended' (BBC Music Magazine)

'There is some challenging music here for both players and it receives performances of the highest quality, as though this music were at the very centre of the standard repertoire instead of well beyond its fringes. Tanja Becker-Bender's tonal palette is wide, not shying away in the least from the occasional heathly dig into the strings; she seems totally at home with the material and certainly has an edge in power and musical range over the relatively lithe approach of her predecessor Ivan Zenatý for Supraphon' (International Record Review)

'The performances are first rate. Tanja Becker-Bender is the assertive, often spectacular violinist. Pianist Markus Becker does fine things with accompaniments that can sometimes seem ungrateful and predominantly supportive' (The Guardian)

'Tanja Becker-Bender has no problem negotiating her way through this stylistic plurality. She indulges to charming effect the playfulness of the early suite, where shades of Korngold intertwine with the sinuousness of early Schoenberg … it's a measure of her responsiveness to the varying demands of the music that she can alter her sound so well to what is required of her at any one point … Markus Becker is a supportive duo partner throughout and the recording of both players is well balanced' (The Strad)
The manuscript of the Sonata for solo violin WV83 is dated ‘Paris–London, January 1927’. It is one of a group of serious concert works from the period that also saw Schulhoff composing some of his most successful jazz-inspired pieces for piano: Cinq études de jazz (December 1926), Esquisses de jazz (October 1927) and Hot Music (April 1928). The Sonata for solo violin is quite different—written in four compact movements, it brilliantly exploits the possibilities of an unaccompanied violin: driving rhythms in the first movement, a lyrical and highly chromatic slow movement (the opening theme uses all twelve notes of the chromatic scale), a Scherzo that makes extensive use of open fifths, and a trenchant, rugged finale that is coloured with the Lydian mode (a major scale with the fourth note raised, in this case with a C sharp in G major)—a common trait of the folk music of Eastern Europe that was also used by Bartók and Janácek.

from notes by Nigel Simeone © 2011

La Sonate pour violon solo WV83, dont le manuscrit est daté «Paris–Londres, janvier 1927», appartient à un groupe d’œuvres de concert sérieuses datant de l’époque où Schulhoff composa certaines de ses partitions pianistiques d’inspiration jazz les plus couronnées de succès: Cinq études de jazz (décembre 1926), Esquisses de jazz (octobre 1927) et Hot Music (avril 1928). Cette Sonate pour violon solo est cependant très différente; écrite en quatre mouvements compacts, elle exploite brillamment les possibilités du violon sans accompagnement: rythmes allants dans le premier mouvement; mouvement lent lyrique et très chromatique (le thème inaugural utilise les douze notes de la gamme chromatique); Scherzo usant abondamment des quintes à vide; et finale incisif et rude, coloré par le mode lydien (une gamme majeure avec la quatrième note haussée, en l’occurrence avec un ut dièse en sol majeur), un trait courant dans la musique traditionnelle d’Europe orientale, auquel Bartók et Janácek recoururent également.

extrait des notes rédigées par Nigel Simeone © 2011
Français: Hypérion

Das Manuskript der Sonate für Solo-Violine WV83 trägt den Vermerk „Paris–London, Januar 1927“ und gehört zu einer Gruppe ernster Konzertwerke aus derselben Schaffensperiode, in der Schulhoff auch einige seiner erfolgreichsten vom Jazz inspirierten Klavierstücke schrieb: Cinq études de jazz (Dezember 1926), Esquisses de jazz (Oktober 1927) und Hot Music (April 1928). Die Sonate für Solo-Violine ist jedoch ganz anders und besteht aus vier kompakten Sätzen, in denen die Möglichkeiten für unbegleitetes Violinspiel auf brillante Weise ausgeschöpft werden: mit treibenden Rhythmen im ersten Satz; einem lyrischen und höchst chromatischen langsamen Satz (das einleitende Thema nutzt alle zwölf Töne der chromatischen Tonleiter); einem Scherzo mit ausgiebiger Verwendung offener Quinten; und einem pointierten, zerklüfteten Finalsatz, der von der lydischen Tonleiter gefärbt ist, einer Dur-Tonleiter, deren vierter Ton um einen Halbton erhöht ist (in diesem Fall also Cis in G-Dur), die in der osteuropäischen Volksmusik häufig vorkommt und auch von Bartók und Janácek verwendet wurde.

aus dem Begleittext von Nigel Simeone © 2011
Deutsch: Henning Weber

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