Rachel Barton Pine

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  Brahms and Joachim Violin Concertos
About

Joachim: Violin Concerto No. 2 in D minor,
  Op. 11 “In the Hungarian Style”
   I. Allegro un poco maestoso
   II. Romanze: Andante
   III. Finale alla Zingara: Allegro con spirito
Brahms: Violin Concerto in D major,
  Op. 77 (cadenza by Joseph Joachim)
   I. Allegro non troppo
      Cadenza by Joseph Joachim-end
   II. Adagio
      Alex Klein, solo oboe
   III. Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo vivace
 Bonus Track: Cadenza by Rachel Barton Pine

About

Brahms Concerto with the Chicago Symphony, paired with the masterpiece that inspired it, Joachim’s “Hungarian” Concerto – GRAMMY nominated!
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Press

"This is not only one of the best sounding violin and orchestra recordings ever made, but the entire concept is so smart, so well executed, and so thoughtfully planned that even if it were not so musically stupendous it still would be worthy of your attention... this is one of those rare productions in which absolutely everything goes right... Astounding!" - ClassicsToday.com
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Fan CommentsFan Comments

Extraordinary in every way! The Brahms Violin Concerto is one of the most over recorded works in the violin repertoire. It is hard to imagine another recording could have anything to add. But this is exactly what Rachel Barton, Carlos Kalmar, and the Chicago Symphony have done. Barton brings an extremely personal musical voice to the Brahms. In the over 30 recordings of it I own, there is none like it. However, rather than wondering why she does not approach the Brahms like others, I quickly found myself wondering why others have not interpreted it like she does. From her choice of tempi to her phrasing, her concept of the Brahms is grand, aristocratic and expansive. Barton's playing grabs you from her first note and does not let go. Her tone is huge and her coloring and timing exquisite. She gives us two cadenzas, the Joachim (to fit the concept of the album) and her own (very interesting and enjoyable). Chicago Symphony oboist Alex Klein plays a glorious solo to start the second movement and Barton gives the movement probably the most heavenly performance I have ever heard. Her pacing of the third movement is perfect and the flair and excitement she brings is unmatched. While I had known of the Joachim "Hungarian" Concerto, I had never actually heard it. This is an incredible work full of catchy melodies that left me humming for hours after hearing it. Had Joachim not been so successful as a violinist and teacher, he surely would have left a profound legacy as a composer. His orchestration is masterful. The technical challenges facing the soloist in the Brahms pale in comparison to those of the Joachim. Barton's performances demonstrate that her technique is limitless and her mastery of the violin unsurpassed. Every passage sounds effortless and the musical line is never lost. This is a wonderful concerto, brilliantly performed, that deserves (and will hopefully receive) much wider recognition. After a series of very fine, but somewhat niche recordings, this album establishes Barton as solidly in the mainstream. I look forward to hearing her interpretation of other "standard" violin repertoire. If this CD is any indication, she will have a long career at the very top of her profession. - (Amazon.com customer)

A landmark recording of the two greatest violin concerti. History is such a fickle judge. Joachim was a truly great musician, whose powers of orchestration were only exceeded in his lifetime time by Wagner, and whose violin skills were the equal of Liszt's piano mastery. This concerto is arguably the most unjustly neglected violin masterpiece of recent history. With the sensitive musical support of Kalmar and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Rachel Barton has created a performance of the work which must surely be the standard against which any future performance is judged. From the wonderful opening symphonic tutti in a minor key with Hungarian raised fourth, which gives no hint of the supremacy of the soloist to come, the first movement leads into an extraordinary intimate and dreamlike violin entry, right in the middle register of the instrument. This has the effect of reinforcing the initial impression that the work is conceived as symphonic and the violin is integrally partnered with the orchestra. Gradually, the violin establishes itself as the prime instrument, but never fighting against the larger body. The soloist is given sustained difficulties which are never shallow displays, rather the direct statement of Joachim's economy of thought to perfectly ornament the structure of this masterwork. From the purely hedonistic point of view, this is glorious music, sweet and beautiful, full of themes as attractive and memorable as ever you will hear. The second movement is especially beautiful, particularly the second part of the slow movement theme, and the finale is vibrant with drama and deceptive simplicity. The more I hear this, the more I realize this is the Opus Magnus of the greatest violinist composer of recent times. Brahms' violin concerto is a product of the meeting of minds between Joachim and Brahms, an excellent choice to pair with the Hungarian concerto, This performance of the Brahms is a grand expression indeed, but it is the relationships and differences between the Brahms and the Joachim concerti that are so beautifully illustrated here. The Brahms is "a struggle between violin and orchestra in which the violin wins"; the Joachim is "a striving together between the orchestra and the violin in which the music wins." What phenomenal technique and musicianship Ms Barton displays here. Let us hope that her contribution to the recorded legacy continues to dazzle us. This album should be in every musician's collection, and would please every listener who loves the sweet sound of the violin. -

Lovely, indulgent sound, fabulous Joachim concerto! I love this disc. Buy it and enjoy, you will continue to gain pleasure from the Joachim with every hearing. - Passionate “eclectic” collector (Amazon.com customer)

  Brahms and Joachim Violin Concertos
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