on June 3, 2001
I have little to add, except to say that the reason David Oistrakh stands as perhaps the greatest violinist of the century, so well illustrated in this recording, is that unlike such magicians as Heifetz, he never allowed the violin to become the end. Rather, he mastered it utterly toward the single purpose of making great music to sing, and not only to sing, but to sing in all of its parts, be it violin, viola, piano, cello, clarinet, or orchestra in the mix.
His recording of the Prokoviev Sonata No. 1 in F Minor, among the others on this disk, stands as an archetype in this regard. For a more recent stereo version, his recording with Frida Bauer at the keyboard on Praga Productions (Harmonia Mundi s. a.) PR 250 041 (also available from Amazon), presents an almost identical performance in live concert, not quite as precise, but with the fuller sound of superior reproduction. Between these two available recordings we get a sense of the arguably greatest recording of this piece ever made, issued in the 1960s on RCA Victor Red Seal (LM-1987), but never reissued on CD (would it were so). This neglected RCA recording of Oistrakh with Vladimir Yampolsky at the keyboard had both the impeccable precision of the present recording and the full sound of the Praga recording, a perfect intersection of talent and timing.
I urge you to get both of the available Oistrakh recordings of this piece and compare them to any more recent performance by, say, Mintz or Repin, and you will understand why I might pine for that RCA recording seemingly lost to fate.
on March 26, 1999
These performances are Oistrakh at the hight of his facility and technical command. His playing is so solid and strong. His intonation is perfect, and the ensemble playing, especially with his favorite accompinist, Lev Oberin, is intimately together. His Kruetzer sonata with Oberin is the best recording I have ever heard out of Heifitz, Milstein and Szerying. These recordings are essential for the violin lover. He is truly one of the greatest violinists of the century.
on March 26, 1999
These performances are Oistrakh at the hight of his facility and technical command. His playing is so solid and strong; his intonation, perfect, and ensemble playing, especially with his favorite accompinist, Lev Oberin, is intimate. His Kruetzer sonata with Lev Oberin is the best recording i have ever heard. These recordings are essential for the violin lover. He is one of the greatest of the century.