Magazine article Gramophone

Mozart * Poulenc: Mozart Violin Sonatas

Magazine article Gramophone

Mozart * Poulenc: Mozart Violin Sonatas

Article excerpt

Mozart * Poulenc

Mozart Violin Sonatas--No 18, K301; No 21,

K304; No 26, K378 Poulenc Violin Sonata

Esther Hoppe vn Alasdair Beatson pf

Claves (F) 50-1701 (67' * DDD)

Poulenc wasn't too sure about violin sonatas: 'The prima donna violin over arpeggiated piano makes me want to vomit', he remarked. Presumably he'd have had no problem with the Mozart sonatas, K301 and 304, that open this disc by Esther Hoppe and Alasdair Beatson. These are sonatas for piano with violin accompaniment, rather than the other way round, and this pair make that clear from the outset, with Beatson's bass line striding emphatically forward even as Hoppe plays her winsome opening melody.

That sets the tone for large-scale performances--very definitely public rather than private, with Claves' spacious studio acoustic allowing plenty of room for big gestures. The architecture of the music comes through strongly, and Leopold Mozart would have approved of Hoppe's selective use of vibrato. …

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