Sibelius, Prokofiev, Glazunov: Violin Concertos

Sibelius, Prokofiev, Glazunov: Violin Concertos

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by Jascha Heifetz
     
 

Was Jascha Heifetz the greatest violinist of the 20th century? His critics carped that all his interpretations sounded the same. It is true that it takes only an instant to recognize his diamondlike precision and powerful tone, but the fact remains that from the time of his U.S. debut and first recordings in 1917, Heifetz set new standards of technical proficiency and… See more details below

Overview

Was Jascha Heifetz the greatest violinist of the 20th century? His critics carped that all his interpretations sounded the same. It is true that it takes only an instant to recognize his diamondlike precision and powerful tone, but the fact remains that from the time of his U.S. debut and first recordings in 1917, Heifetz set new standards of technical proficiency and coloristic variety that will remain touchstones as long as mortals set bow to strings. As hard as it is to pick one selection from his vast recorded output (currently available in its entirety in RCA's 65-CD Heifetz Collection), this single disc of three 20th-century concertos -- all of which Heifetz helped to popularize -- clearly demonstrates the violinist's ability to use his prodigious gifts to serve the music at hand. No other violinist has captured Sibelius's icy ruggedness, Prokofiev's bittersweet irony, or Glazunov's suave brilliance with such mastery and panache.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Blair Sanderson
In reissuing its vintage stereo recordings, RCA either reproduces the original albums as they were released on LP or combines several recordings into much fuller programs. Fortunately, the second option pertains to this album of Jascha Heifetz's masterful performances of violin concertos by Sibelius, Prokofiev, and Glazunov; listeners get well over an hour of great music. Heifetz recorded Sibelius' concerto and Prokofiev's "Concerto No. 2" in 1959, and these were released on LP with Walter Hendl and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in the former, and with Charles Münch and the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the latter; the Glazunov concerto was recorded in 1963, with Hendl leading the RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra. As varied as the conductors, ensembles, and venues are, there is remarkable consistency in the excellence of the recordings. Heifetz is always in complete control, and his awe-inspiring playing binds these performances. In terms of reproduction, Heifetz is always distinctly separated from the orchestral accompaniment, and the three ensembles are reproduced with natural depth. For Heifetz fans who want to hear every astonishing detail, this is an ideal disc.
Penguin Guide to Compact Discs
[The Sibelius concerto] set the standard by which others have come to be judged. It is one of [Heifetz's] finest recordings.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/25/2005
Label:
Rca
UPC:
0828766637229
catalogNumber:
66372
Rank:
28544

Tracks

  1. Violin Concerto in D minor, Op. 47  - Jean Sibelius  - Jascha Heifetz  -  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  - Walter Hendl
  2. Violin Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 63  - Sergey Prokofiev  - Jascha Heifetz  -  Boston Symphony Orchestra  - Charles Münch
  3. Violin Concerto in A minor, Op. 82  - Alexander Glazunov  - Jascha Heifetz  - Walter Hendl  -  RCA Victor Orchestra

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