Magazine article Gramophone

Weinberg: 'Complete Sonatas and Works for Violin and Piano'

Magazine article Gramophone

Weinberg: 'Complete Sonatas and Works for Violin and Piano'

Article excerpt

Weinberg

'Complete Sonatas and Works for Violin and Piano' Violin Sonatas--No 1, Op 12; No 2, Op 15; No 3, Op 37; No 4, Op 39; No 5, Op 53; No 6, Op 136. Moldavian Rhapsody, Op 47 No 3. Sonatina No 2, Op 15.

Three Pieces

Linus Roth vn Jose Gallardo pf

Challenge Classics (M) (3) CC72567 (164' * DDD)

Complete series to challenge Toccata and CPO recordings

This near-complete set of Weinberg's violin and-piano works fills a significant gap in his discography (I say near-complete, because the two Songs Without Words, previously thought lost, have turned up in a Moscow archive). The CPO and Toccata Classics discs, each heralded as Vol 1, would seem to have been upstaged. But things are not quite so simple. For one thing, the Toccata Classics cycle is scheduled to include the three solo violin sonatas on what will be three much fuller discs. For another, the Toccata Classics and CPO discs boast superior recording quality.

Still, things are perfectly simple if you want the duo repertoire now and can be content with more-than-respectable playing. From the neoromantic Three Pieces, products of a precocious self-taught IS-year-old in Warsaw, to the Sixth Sonata, a rock-hard companion piece to the war-memorial 17th and 18th Symphonies which it quotes extensively, Linus Roth and Jose Gallardo show themselves to be ardent and adept exponents. In between, Weinberg's ascent to mastery can clearly be followed. The first two sonatas, composed either side of his move from Tashkent to Moscow, show him gradually taking command of the duo sonata genre, with some help from Schubert and Prokofiev. The Third and Fourth Sonatas make another pair, the former working through the Shostakovich influence, the latter boldly declaring emancipation; both were composed in 1947, just before damned-up post-war ideological pressures broke over composers' heads. …

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