This recording is the last volume of a four-disc survey of Martinuo’s complete output for solo violin and orchestra,
including compositions with other solo instruments. They are performed here by the orchestra in which Martinuo played
the violin, the distinguished Czech violinist Bohuslav Matoušek who is one of the foremost living exponents of this
music, and conductor Christopher Hogwood.
Martinuo’s Violin Concerto No 1 was written for the celebrated Polish-born American violinist Samuel Dushkin.
Although immediately appealing to the performer, its premiere was delayed due to the volatile European political
situation in the thirties, and the score was lost during World War II when Martinuo was forced to hide his autographs in
Europe and flee to the USA. The score was discovered in 1968 and the work did not receive its premiere until 1973. It is
a dazzling, virtuoso work, revealing the influence of Dushkin’s violin playing, especially his liking for technical display.
The Violin Concerto No 2 is different from its predecessor both stylistically and in terms of its fate. It was commissioned
by Mishca Elman (1891–1967), a famous American violinist of Ukrainian origin. The work’s main characteristics recall
the qualities of Elman’s playing, notably his unique sound, his preference for noble and elegant melodies, his
exceptional feeling for the sonority of his instrument, his love of slow tempos, and his rich use of rubato and
Bohuslav Matoušek demonstrates his great versatility in idiomatic performances of these contrasting works.