Edwin Huizinga, violin
Paul Wilmot, piano & organ
Violin Sonata Op. 78 in G major . . . Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)
I. Vivace ma non troppo
Romance Op.26 . . . Johan Svendsen (1840-1911)
Sarabande, from the Partita in D minor. . . J.S.Bach (1685-1750)
Es ist das heil uns kommen her, BWV 638 from Das Orgel-Büchlein . . . J.S.Bach
Brahms’ first violin sonata is a masterpiece of construction, beauty and romantic sweep. Both instruments intertwine, imitate and respond to each other in an exquisite texture at turns graceful, serene and passionate. There are allusions to rain throughout – the sonata is known as “Regensonate” (“Rain sonata”) – referring to the fact that Brahms reused one of his art songs, “Regenlied” (“Rain Song”) in the construction of the work; the song text by Claus Groth expresses nostalgia for youth evoked by rain and nature. Brahms channels this reverie into a lyrical, at times tempestuous musical exchange, with more than a suggestion of sudden rainstorms unleashing powerful inner emotions.
Johan Svendsen was a Norwegian violinist and composer, a life-long friend of his more famous contemporary Edvard Grieg, and Richard Wagner. He was renowned for his skills as a conductor and orchestrator. The restrained, elegant and hauntingly beautiful Romance, composed in 1881, is his most famous composition.
It is easy to forget that J.S Bach was also an excellent violinist. His father was a violinist; and he obtained his first job as a violinist, playing in the Weimar Court Orchestra. He supplied violinists with great masterpieces to play, of which the Partita in D minor is an outstanding example. The D minor Partita presents a standard group of Baroque dances, including the magnificent Sarabande. This dance, presenting a strong division between the 1st and 2nd beats, is a favorite of virtuoso violinists the world over.”