Sunday, 18 August 2013

Isabelle Faust and Claudio Abbado

As I've commented before, Beethoven's violin concerto is a difficult work to bring off successfully – particularly the long first movement. It does require a top-class Beethoven conductor, which it certainly gets in the performance with Claudio Abbado conducting his Orchestra Mozart. Good to hear the orchestral part in good, firm hands. Soloist is the entirely admirable Isabelle Faust; the work does not need some supercharged star virtuoso, but it does need someone who is intensely musical – a quality Ms Faust has in abundance, along with some lovely violin playing (including some super-soft pianissimo playing). I like the zippy finale in this recording; rondos can never be too fast for me. An excellent modern classical recording. It cannot supplant for me Röhn, Kulenkampff, Schneiderhan or Busch, but those classics are now well over 60 years old, so a new classic is much to be welcomed.

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