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Track(s) taken from CDA67911/2

Violin Sonata in A minor 'Sonatina', D385

March/April 1816; published by Diabelli in 1836

Alina Ibragimova (violin), Cédric Tiberghien (piano)
Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Studio Master:
Studio Master:
Recording details: August 2012
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: August 2013
Total duration: 21 minutes 8 seconds

Cover artwork: Dovedale by Moonlight (c1784/5) by Joseph Wright (1734-1797)
Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, Ohio / RT Miller Jr Fund / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'Beautiful and touching … the performances of the virtuoso Rondo brillant and Fantasie are exhilarating; the Rondo combining lively momentum with a sense of poise and the Fantasie beautifully characterised in all its varied aspects. Especially fine are the episodes in Hungarian style, full of energy and grace, and the barnstorming finale, rivalling the famous 1931 recording of Busch and Serkin' (Gramophone)

'Performances which it is hard to imagine ever being bettered' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Most bewitching of all, and performed with a lightness and poise by this established duo, is the Fantasy in C major, breaking convention at every turn, written in 1827' (The Observer)

'Ibragimova and Tiberghien encompass the music with exhilarating flair … and with a keen stylistic ear' (The Daily Telegraph)

'The three Schubert Sonatinas are each rendered beautifully to scale by both partners … the felicities are of course manifold … Ibragimova and Tiberghien rise admirably to Schubert's late musical and technical challenges. In the aforesaid finale, they really let their hair down and the result is truly exhilarating. The Fantasy is as much a challenge to the pianist as to the violinist: Tiberghien emphatically holds his own!' (International Record Review)

'When Schubert’s melodies send Ibragimova soaring into the skies or when she tosses off filigree decorations she stays at her electrifying best. Try her wonderful high-wire pianissimos during the leisurely C major Fantasy of 1827, the most Schubertian of all the pieces, sweetly dominated by variations on his soulful song setting of the Rückert poem Sei mir gegrüsst!. As for vigour, nothing sets the pulse racing as much as his B minor Rondo, the most assertively rhetorical work here, given a performance powerful enough to stand in for the National Grid. Much to enjoy here' (The Times)

'Ibragimova and Tiberghien play with flair and taste' (The Sunday Times)

'Given the fine track record of violin-piano duo Alina Ibragimova and Cédric Tiberghien, it’s not surprising to find them completely at home—lyrically poised and intimately dynamic—in Schubert’s four sonatas. But this disc is about the composer’s complete works for violin and piano, and how refreshing it is to have the fiery, often whimsical Rondo in B minor reeled off with such élan; to hear the multi-coloured expansiveness of the four-movement Fantasy in C minor, with all its playful pianism to boot; and Schubert’s delightful miniature transcription of his own song Sei mir gegrüsst!, itself the subject of variations in the Fantasy' (The Scotsman)
The Sonata in A minor, Schubert’s favourite key for expressions of pathos, has a more individual flavour than that of the D major. At the opening of the first movement the violin transmutes the piano’s yearning cantabile into strenuous rhetoric, with vaulting leaps between registers. In the lyrical C major theme that follows Schubert seems to remember, both in the cut of the melody and the subdominant-leaning harmony, the fast section of the Countess’s famous aria ‘Dove sono’ from Le nozze di Figaro. The music then settles in F major for a third theme, beginning as a chirpy dialogue between violin and piano left hand around pulsing triplets in the right. Schubert thus creates an exposition with three, rather than the traditional two, separate key centres (A minor, C major and F major), a trait found in so many of his sonata-form movements, right through to the B flat Piano Sonata and the String Quintet.

The beguiling F major Andante initially evokes the minuet finale of Mozart’s F major Violin Sonata, K377 (which Schubert also remembered a few months later in the Fifth Symphony’s Andante), though the harmonic adventures of its two episodes are pure Schubert. The third movement, in D minor—another unorthodox key choice—is a cussed, laconic Menuetto, more Haydnesque than Mozartian, with a Ländler-style trio underpinned by piquant chromatic harmonies. Opening with a violin song of melancholy grace, the rondo finale has a similar plan to that of the D major Sonata. But its scale is broader, its reach bolder. At the climaxes of the two episodes the instruments hurl rising scales at each other with almost Beethovenian vehemence.

from notes by Richard Wigmore © 2013

La Sonate en la mineur, la tonalité pathétique préférée de Schubert, a un parfum davantage sui generis. Au début du premier mouvement, le violon transmute le cantabile langoureux du piano en une rhétorique vigoureuse, avec des sauts démesurés entre les registres. Dans le lyrique thème en ut majeur qui suit, Schubert semble se rappeler, dans la coupe de la mélodie comme dans l’harmonie inclinant à la sous-dominante, la section rapide de «Dove sono», la fameuse aria de la Comtesse dans Le nozze di Figaro. Puis la musique s’installe en fa majeur pour un troisième thème démarrant comme un dialogue enjoué entre le violon et le piano (main gauche) autour de triolets battants (main droite). Ce faisant, Schubert crée une exposition avec non plus deux, comme le veut la tradition, mais trois centres tonals (la mineur, ut majeur et fa majeur)—un trait que l’on retrouve dans nombre de ses mouvements de forme sonate, y compris dans sa Sonate pour piano en si bémol et dans son Quintette à cordes.

D’emblée, le séduisant Andante en fa majeur évoque le menuet-finale de la Sonate pour violon en fa majeur K377 de Mozart (dont Schubert se souviendra quelques mois plus tard dans l’Andante de sa Symphonie nº 5), même si les péripéties harmoniques de ses deux épisodes sont du pur Schubert. Le troisième mouvement en ré mineur—encore un choix de tonalité peu orthodoxe—est un Menuetto obstiné, laconique, plus haydnesque que mozartien, avec un trio en style de Ländler étayé de piquantes harmonies chromatiques. S’ouvrant sur un chant violonistique d’une grâce mélancolique, le rondo-finale a un plan similaire à celui de la Sonate en ré majeur, mais sa gamme est plus large, son dessin plus audacieux. À l’apogée des deux épisodes, les instruments se lancent des gammes ascendantes avec une véhémence quasi beethovénienne.

extrait des notes rédigées par Richard Wigmore © 2013
Français: Hypérion

Die Sonate in a-Moll—Schuberts Lieblingstonart für Pathos—ist individueller gestaltet. Zu Beginn des ersten Satzes verwandelt die Geige das sehnsuchtsvolle Cantabile des Klaviers in rührige Rhetorik und unternimmt dabei große Sprünge zwischen den Registern. In dem darauffolgenden lyrischen C-Dur-Thema scheint Schubert, sowohl was die melodische Anlage als auch die subdominantische Ausrichtung anbetrifft, den schnellen Teil der berühmten Arie „Dove sono“ der Gräfin aus Figaros Hochzeit im Hinterkopf gehabt zu haben. Die Musik schwingt sich dann in F-Dur mit einem dritten Thema ein, das als lebhafter Dialog zwischen Violine und der linken Hand des Klaviers um pulsierende Triolen in der Rechten herum beginnt. Schubert komponiert damit eine Exposition mit drei anstelle der traditionellen zwei separaten Tonartenzentren (a-Moll, C-Dur und F-Dur), ein Charakteristikum, das sich in so vielen seiner Sätze in Sonatenform findet, bis hin zu der Klaviersonate in B-Dur und dem Streichquintett.

Das verführerische Andante in F-Dur erinnert zunächst an das Menuett-Finale der Violinsonate in F-Dur (KV 377) von Mozart (das Schubert ebenfalls einige Monate später im Andante seiner 5. Symphonie verarbeitete), obwohl die harmonischen Abenteuer in den beiden Episoden reiner Schubert sind. Der dritte Satz in d-Moll—wiederum eine unorthodoxe Tonartenwahl—ist ein stures, lakonisches Menuetto, eher Haydn’sch denn Mozart’sch, mit einem ländlerartigen Trio, das mit pikanten chromatischen Harmonien untermauert ist. Das Rondo-Finale beginnt mit einem Geigengesang von melancholischer Anmut und hat eine ähnliche Anlage wie das der D-Dur-Sonate, doch sind Ausmaß und Reichweite hier größer. Bei den Höhepunkten der beiden Episoden werfen sich die beiden Instrumente gegenseitig aufsteigende Tonleitern mit fast Beethoven’scher Vehemenz zu.

aus dem Begleittext von Richard Wigmore © 2013
Deutsch: Viola Scheffel

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