Naxos has released its recording of Ignatz Waghalter’s Violin Concerto, Rhapsodie for Violin, Sonata for Violin and Piano and two short pieces for violin.
From the Naxos announcement:
Born only two years earlier than Webern and successful as a conductor in Berlin, Ignatz Waghalter built on the tradition of Schumann and Brahms rather than seeking revolutionary innovation. The inspiring melodic and rhythmic invention of his 1911 Violin Concerto led a contemporary reviewer to recommend that ‘violinists should take it up without hesitation!’, while the earlier Violin Sonata won the coveted Mendelssohn Prize in 1902. A milestone in violinist Irmina Trynkos’ ‘Waghalter Project’ (www.waghalterproject.com), this release brings to light one of the most unjustly forgotten musicians of interwar Europe.
More information can be found at the Naxos website.
Full track list
|1.||Violin Concerto in A major, Op. 15: I. Allegro moderato|
|2.||Violin Concerto in A major, Op. 15: II. Andante sostenuto con molto espressivo|
|3.||Violin Concerto in A major, Op. 15: III. Allegro con spirito – Allegro giocoso|
|4.||Rhapsody, Op. 9|
|5.||Violin Sonata in F minor, Op. 5: I. Allegro appassionato|
|6.||Violin Sonata in F minor, Op. 5: II. Andante espressivo|
|7.||Violin Sonata in F minor, Op. 5: III. Con brio|
|8.||Idyll, Op. 19b|
Terry Robbins (The WholeNote), February 2013:
The main offering here is the Violin Concerto Op.15…a beautiful work that recalls Bruch and Brahms…The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under Alexander Walker provides exemplary accompaniment in this and in the Rhapsodie Op.9…
Three attractive works for violin and piano complete the disc: the Sonata in F minor Op.5; the Idyll Op.19b; and Geständnis, Trynkos being joined in these by pianist Giorgi Latsabidze.
Trynkos is a relatively new talent on the concert scene, but plays with warmth, style and confidence; she is clearly one to watch.
© 2013 The WholeNote
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Jerry Dubins (Fanfare), January 2013:
…Irmina Trynkos, is a violinist of great talent and even greater promise. It’s obvious from her playing that she cares passionately for Waghalter and has strong conviction in his work. Both the concerto and the sonata make technical demands on the player, which Trynkos addresses with confidence and enough technique in reserve to deliver readings that go beyond the notes on the page. Musical intelligence and emotional depth are hallmarks of Trynkos’s playing, and she’s capable of producing both the fire and the soothing balm that the best moments of Waghalter’s scores call for. Credit also goes to Alexander Walker for his committed leadership of the Royal Philharmonic in the orchestral works, and to pianist Giorgi Latsabidze for his sympathetic partnering of Trynkos in the violin and piano numbers.
…Trynkos’s CD is a must for all violin lovers and for those who wish to sample the work of this long neglected composer.
© 2013 Fanfare
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Maria Nockin (Fanfare), January 2013:
Waghalter’s 1911 violin concerto, op. 15, is new to almost all listeners at this point and it is absolutely amazing that this beautifully crafted major work could lie dormant for so many years…Waghalter’s concerto has shimmering lyrical textures and sweeping melodies that Trynkos plays with abandon. She has wonderfully secure trills and she demonstrates them with great taste as well as virtuosity.
The Rhapsodie for Violin and Orchestra was written in 1906. Although the rhapsodie begins with a plaintive tune decorated with trills that diminish into the ether, a second theme comes in like a ray of bright sunlight that floods the entire landscape. This exultant theme eventually leads the listener to a happy ending in a soothing, peaceful place. Trynkos gets a full-blooded sound with exquisite overtones from her historic Stainer violin, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Alexander Walker plays both works with lush romantic sonorities. Trynkos and pianist Giorgi Latsabidze play the Sonata for Violin and Piano with all the passion that the piece calls for. Its Gypsy melody enchants the ears and fascinates the mind. The other two pieces, Idyll and Geständnis…are short and could well be used as encores. Idyll invites the listener to enjoy the beauty of its setting, while Geständnis would seem to involve the revelation of a white lie that might bring a couple closer together. Pianist and violinist play both these short pieces with a great deal of feeling for this composer and his music. The sound on this disc is clear and the balances are well equalized. I think this is a recording that belongs in every collection.
© 2013 Fanfare
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Bob McQuiston (Classical Lost and Found), November 2012:
…for one of the best chamber music discoveries to roll down “CD Lane” in a long time, the violin sonata of 1902. Honored with the prestigious Mendelssohn Scholarship Prize shortly after it was written, it seems incomprehensible that a work of this quality has remained buried so long!
In three sublime movements, the initial sonata from allegro [track-5] begins with a questioning theme that soon gives way to another Waghalter killer melody (WK) [01:26]. The two ideas undergo a highly structured development and recapitulation. The latter ends in a coda based on WK that brings the movement to a breathtaking close.
Ignaz follows this with a winsome andante [track-6]. It’s based on an attractive extended subject that becomes the topic for dramatic opening and closing conversations between the two instruments. These surround a brief animated central episode [03:10-04:20] which assures the movement never becomes a romantic wallow, and anticipates the lively finale [track-7]. With leaping virtuosic passages for the violin and an exciting agitated piano accompaniment, it ends this exemplary sonata on a high.
Two violin and piano encores, Idyll [track-8] and Geständis (Confession) [track-9], fill out the CD. Granted these are salon music, but only in the best sense of the term. Once again Waghalter proves himself a master tunesmith, giving us a couple of loveable numbers that bring this amazing disc of discovery to a satisfying conclusion.
You may not have heard of Greek-Polish violinist Irmina Trynkos, but based on her spectacular performances of everything here, it shouldn’t be long before she’s much wider known. Her commanding technical ability, lovely tone, immaculate phrasing, and spot-on intonation make her one of the most exciting new soloists to have appeared in these pages.
The outstanding support she receives from the Royal Philharmonic orchestra under conductor Alexander Walker makes the case for the concerto and rhapsody even stronger. The same can be said about the superb, perfectly judged accompaniment provided by Georgian pianist Giorgi Latsabidze in the chamber pieces.
All of the recordings were done in Henry Wood Hall, London, but the orchestral and chamber ones were made six months apart. The soundstage for the orchestral selections is ideally proportioned in a warm acoustic with soloist and tutti perfectly balanced against one another. The violin tone and instrumental timbre are crystal clear and musically pleasing.
The soundstage for the chamber works in these spacious reverberant surroundings is wide as well as deep, and should appeal to those liking wetter sonics. The violin tone is musically bright, and the piano beautifully captured.
© 2012 Classical Lost and Found
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Infodad.com, November 2012:
…Ignatz Waghalter…was both conductor and composer…Waghalter never moved significantly beyond Romantic sensibility, creating melodic, well-constructed music…His violin concerto…stands in strong contrast to those of composers such as Bartók and Ligeti, being in the traditional three movements and filled with overflowing melodies and Romantic (or post-Romantic) emotions. For the violinist, Waghalter’s concerto lies well on the instrument and presents plenty of opportunities for display and emotional involvement—it is a highly attractive…The other major piece on the new Naxos CD of Waghalter’s music is a violin-and-piano sonata for which Waghalter won the prestigious Mendelssohn Prize in 1902, at the age of 21. Again, this is a classically structured work with Romantic sensibilities, the violin and piano parts being nicely balanced and the sensibilities warm and winning.
© 2012 Infodad.com
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David Denton (David’s Review Corner), October 2012:
‘I cannot think of many composers post-Bruch who translate such inventiveness into such a creative palette. Violinists should take it up without hesitation.’ So read a contemporary review following an early performance of Waghalter’s Violin Concerto. The composer had been born of impoverished Polish-Jewish parents, his musical gifts eventually taking him to Berlin where he became a well-known conductor and an admired composer. But he was writing at a time when the musical world was quickly moving forward spearheaded by the Second Viennese School. Then came the Nazi era and Waghalter fled to the United States where he embarked on some misguided ventures, dying quite suddenly at the age of 68, still relatively unknown in his new homeland and long rejected by those he had left behind in Germany. It was a complete recipe for membership of ‘the most unjustly forgotten musicians of his time’. This first recording of his Violin Concerto shows a score that could well of come from those who lived and worked in the musical world of Arensky, Taneyev and their friends. It is beautifully crafted, the central movement of considerable charm and the outer movements providing ample virtuosity for the soloist. Maybe it has no melodic material that hangs in the memory bank, but I urge you to get to know it. The Rhapsody I find of less interest, but the short Sonata is full of pleasing material in a quite light mood. The other two short pieces are equally beguiling. The Greek-Polish violinist, Irmina Trynkos, is an ideal champion, her warm tone aided by a fast vibrato to seduce the ear. Ably abetted by the RPO with Alexander Walker conducting, and a highly responsive piano partner in Giorgi Latsabidze. Top drawer UK sound quality.
© 2012 David’s Review Corner