Leo Ornstein - Complete Violin Sonatas
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Label: Brilliant Classics
Cat No: 95079
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 24th February 2017
WorksHebraic Fantasy for violin and piano
Pieces (3) for flute and piano
Violin Sonata, op. posth.
Violin Sonata no.1, op.26
Violin Sonata no.2, op.31
ArtistsFrancesco Parrino (violin)
Stefano Parrino (flute)
Maud Renier (piano)
Only the descending clusters in the piano part of the second movement give notice of the fiercely Modernist rhetoric of the Second Sonata, in which the 20‐something tyro composer himself admitted that he brought music ‘to the very edge... I simply drew back and said, ‘beyond that lies complete chaos’. In fact the four movements – much briefer than the First, but still traditionally disposed, with an Andante espressivo second movement – inhabit the realm of Expressionist angst shared by Arnold Schoenberg’s music of the period, including the Five Orchestral Pieces and Erwartung.
Brilliant Classics presents the first opportunity on record to compare and contrast these richly fascinating works, and in a new recording made by Italian instrumentalists who show themselves in deep sympathy with Ornstein’s protean creative world. The brief, single‐movement Third Sonata dates from around 15 years later. It is characterized by a harsh, almost alienated lyricism, and by many references to the Jewish culture that became explicit in the Hebraic Fantasy, written in 1929 for the celebration of Alfred Einstein’s 50th birthday.
The Three Pieces represent most of Ornstein’s writing for the flute: written separately within the 1950s, they show a composer who had reinvented himself once more to write with melodic charm, and in a mood of peaceful serenity. This disc should be a fascinating discovery for all followers of 20th‐century music.
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