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Violin Sonatas Nos. 1 & 2

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Composer: Schumann
  • Audio CD (July 31 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Ncl
  • ASIN: B0000013ZN
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #169,174 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  •  Would you like to update product info, give feedback on images, or tell us about a lower price?


1. Mit Leidenschaftlichem Ausdruck
2. Allegretto
3. Lebhaft
4. Ziemlich Langsam-Lebhaft
5. Sehr Lebhaft
6. Leise, Einfach
7. Bewegt
8. Intermezzo In F Major From F.A.E. Sonata

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Format: Audio CD
This disc provides an excellent opportunity to acquaint yourself with some of Schumann's most beautiful and thoughtful music. The finale of Brahms's Fourth Symphony owes a clear debt to the groundbreaking work of Schumann in the initial movement of the second sonata. (Brahms had steeped himself thoroughly in Schumann's music.) Kaler plays with a marvellous tone, and he and Slutsky understand this music very well. The only version I like better is that of Kremer and Argerich (DG) who are a little more atmospheric in the dark and mysterious reaches of Sonata No. 1. (Another version of the second sonata to consider is that of Ferras and Barbizet which appears as filler on Ferras's DG Double album of great violin concertos.) The recorded sound is superb.
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By A Customer on March 20 1999
Format: Audio CD
The CD is a good CD for it's price. HOwever, me and my friend were playing this violin sonata and we wanted to get some interpretations from this CD. However, they are rythmically off in the sonata No 1, 1st movement. They sort of start out like in triplets and the piano is TOTALLY overpowering the violin on this CD. Also, in the end where the violin has the run ups, the tempo has changed compared with the beginning. It's as if the Kaler and SLutsky just went in and said "okay, let's play this, get our money, and go on to our next track." However, I only find complaint with the 1st movement of sonata no 1. However, it is still worth a good buy for the price you pay.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa74782e8) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa75decd8) out of 5 stars Great value Feb. 23 2006
By Alan Lekan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Among Faure's piano chamber music, the Piano Quartets, Trio and First Violin Sonata (A major) are the most popular, well-crafted and rewarding works. In his old age, Faure evolved as a composer and his music became less effortlessly transparent and refreshing and more austere and intellectual - and sometimes more puzzling. This is seen comparing the earlier A-major Sonata Op. 13 to the very late E-minor Sonata Op. 108. But, the late E minor sonata - while more remote in its personality - rewards those who take the time to listen to its nuanced messages. it took me a little while but I really love this work now.

There are several fine choices for the two Sonatas including those by Arthur Grumiaux (Philips), Krysia Osostowicz/Susan Tomes (Helios) and this one featuring Dong-Suk Kang and Pascal Devoyon. All three recordings were rated 3/3 stars in Penguin Guide, so it depends on what nuances capture your emotions. With Grumiaux you can always expect equisite lyricism, elan and beautifully poised playing (on a excellent sounding Philips CD). Tomes and Osostowicz are strong in the romantic repertoire (as a pair or with The Floristan Trio or The Domus Quartet) and one can always count on them for the highest levels of musicianship. Joshua Bell also recorded the first sonata ("French Chamber Works" on Decca), but I found both his tone and sound environment completely "flat" and uninspiring for such an accomplished violinist.

So, my pick for this music would be this set on Naxos in part for the equally solid playing but also for the additional, alluring pieces beyond the two sonatas on this CD (the Berceuse, Romance and Andante). The highlight for most will be clearly the first sonata in A-major - no less for its powerfully driving first movement, wonderous second movement, quicksilver third movement and endearingly passionate forth movement. Mr. Kang brings tremedous energy and deft passagework to opeing and closing movements that I found irresistable in its bewitching power to engage the emotions. His reading here exude a full-throttled "romantic" passion that will be most attractive to those who value such qualities in this piece. Another attractively nuanced, romantic reading of the A major Sonata (and delectable Faure recital) comes from Gil Shaham (Vanguard Classics) that is worth investigating.

The three extra pieces on this Naxos release will be a nice "bonus" that brings more dimension into the recital with their more relaxed, lyrical temperament. In particular, the Bercuese Op. 16 and Romance Op. 28 are the most intimate and graceful of the lot which Kang makes sing like an anticipated meeting of lovers. Last, the sound engineering is particularly striking and bold with nothing to cite as deficient - good balance between instruments, clear, optimal spaciousness to create an ideal sound. One of Naxos better efforts.

All-in-all, this CD is a GREAT choice for these pieces with some nice "extras." In fact, in a recent Gramophone comparison of recordings of Faure's first Sonata, this Naxos disc took the pride of place. To some, Kang is considered a way-underrated violinist. Also by Kang on Naxos worth hearing is French Violin Sonatas. Compositions - 5 stars; Performance - 5 stars; Sound quality - 4.5 stars. (sorry, review should have listed 5 stars overall)
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa75f272c) out of 5 stars Beautiful and Profound Late Schumann Nov. 13 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This disc provides an excellent opportunity to acquaint yourself with some of Schumann's most beautiful and thoughtful music. The finale of Brahms's Fourth Symphony owes a clear debt to the groundbreaking work of Schumann in the initial movement of the second sonata. (Brahms had steeped himself thoroughly in Schumann's music.) Kaler plays with a marvellous tone, and he and Slutsky understand this music very well. The only version I like better is that of Kremer and Argerich (DG) who are a little more atmospheric in the dark and mysterious reaches of Sonata No. 1. (Another version of the second sonata to consider is that of Ferras and Barbizet which appears as filler on Ferras's DG Double album of great violin concertos.) The recorded sound is superb.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa75f9528) out of 5 stars A simple twist of fate... Dec 24 2011
By Dean Winiarski - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I hope you don't mind this strange "review," but I have to share this story...

The way I came across this CD is by a very strange twist of fate. I actually had ordered some other title (the identity of which escapes me) and I received what appeared to be the title I ordered. But when I put the CD in my player, the sound that came out was obviously NOT the music as labelled! In some freak manufacturing error, some mysterious CD had accidentally wound up being labelled and packaged as another title.

What makes this more interesting...the music was mesmerizing! But I could not identify it. I only knew it was obviously a violin sonata sounding vaguely "French Impressionist," somewhat like Debussy. The playing was sensitive and the sound was superb. I kept playing it over and over. I didn't care so much about receiving a defective CD; I only knew I had to identify this music!

So I began some sleuth work... I knew that in order for this to happen, the unknown title must be something by the same label. The only other fact I knew was the number of tracks and their length. So I began searching through EVERY violin sonata title listed on Amazon by Naxos...and eventually, I found it through the samples!

So, while I may not be a professional musicologist, and although I may not be able to eloquently quantify the precise qualities that make this a recommendable interpretation, I can relate this anecdote about HOW MUCH TROUBLE I WENT THROUGH to find this music (and Yes, order a properly labelled copy) solely in response to how it captivated me.

PS - I forgive Naxos for this obviously rare mistake!
3 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa75f95d0) out of 5 stars Good CD, but rythmically off March 20 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The CD is a good CD for it's price. HOwever, me and my friend were playing this violin sonata and we wanted to get some interpretations from this CD. However, they are rythmically off in the sonata No 1, 1st movement. They sort of start out like in triplets and the piano is TOTALLY overpowering the violin on this CD. Also, in the end where the violin has the run ups, the tempo has changed compared with the beginning. It's as if the Kaler and SLutsky just went in and said "okay, let's play this, get our money, and go on to our next track." However, I only find complaint with the 1st movement of sonata no 1. However, it is still worth a good buy for the price you pay.


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