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Karl Amadeus Hartmann: Concerto funebre (Hyperion Audio CD)

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Catalogue No: CDA67547

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Department: CDs - Classical CDs: Orchestral

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Concerto funebre
Suite No 1
Suite No 2
Sonata No 1
Sonata No 2

As is well known, the Third Reich drove many of its gifted composers into exile, to early deaths or to the concentration camps. But a significant responsibility devolved on another group, who became ‘internal exiles’, remaining in Germany, but refusing to become cultural ornaments of the Nazi regime. Karl Amadeus Hartmann (1905–1963), in Bavaria, consistently kept the spirit of modernism and human commitment alive in his own work.
However, the rise of the Nazis gave his music deeper resonances of anger and lamentation. Concerto funebre was composed during the outbreak of World War II. It is an extraordinary work, inspired initially by Hartmann’s feelings about the Nazi annexation of Czechoslovakia, containing conflicting messages of hope, desperation and foreboding at the times ahead. The solo violin line is at once a mournful commentary and a prophetic cry.

This generously filled disc also contains all Hartmann’s works for solo violin. These sonatas and suites are fiercely difficult, conceived on a grand scale, and recall the majesty and breadth of J S Bach’s solo violin works.

Making her recording debut for Hyperion in this disc of important repertoire is the spectacular young Russian violinist Alina Ibragimova (b1985). Alina’s many concert appearances throughout Europe have earned her the highest praise, and, as Richard Morrison wrote in The Times, she is ‘destined to be a force in the classical music firmament for decades to come … you feel that you are getting the music straight from the composer’s quill’.

Recording details: Various dates
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Various producers
Engineered by Various engineers
Release date: September 2007
Total duration: 79 minutes 58 seconds
Available for download on iTunes: No

View sleeve notes/artwork
GRAMOPHONE EDITOR'S CHOICE

'She is Russian, 23, and a scorchingly good violinist. This is her CD recital debut; always a testing occasion, but especially for young violinists. What repertoire should be chosen? … Ibragimova has chosen the third route, towards serious and neglected repertory … Hartmann had his youthful iconoclasms, but the agony of the Second World War brought out the tragic artist in him … [Concerto funebre] To the adagio section she brings passion without mawkishness; and the control wielded at high altitudes is phenomenal. The Britten Sinfonia, led by Jacqueline Shave, make fluent sounds too, amplified by Hyperion's lively recording - close to the mike, but never in your face … Ibragimova is marvellously sturdy and exact, especially when making perilous leaps from exposed places. And she plays with such commitment and feeling … As for her next disc, the doors are wide open. But whatever Ibragimova plays, it'll be worth hearing' (The Times)


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