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Milhaud - Violin Concerto No 2 ∙ Concertino de Printemps ∙ Danses (1949)

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Milhaud - Violin Concerto No 2 ∙ Concertino de Printemps ∙ Danses (1949)

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2nd Concerto For Violin And Orchestra
1 	Dramatique 	7:09
2 	Lent Et Sombre 	8:46
3 	Emporte 	6:39

4 	Concertino De Printemps 	8:17

Danses De Jacaremirim 
5 	Sambinha 	1:12
6 	Tanguinho 	2:15
7 	Chorinho 	1:06

Louis Kaufman - violin
Artur Balsam - piano (5-7)
French National Radio Diffusion Orchestra (1-4)
Darius Milhaud - conductor

 

The Second Violin Concerto is a very major work, one of the great unknown violin concertos of the last century. It’s a big piece, about 25 minutes long in three movements, and fully symphonic in scope. Its emotional depth, supposedly inspired by reflection on the just-ended Second World War, belies the composer’s reputation for polished superficiality. The opening movement is a stern march with lyrical interludes that ends threateningly; the slow movement, marked “slow and somber”, is an absolutely gorgeous elegy that really lets Steinbacher display her warm tone to excellent effect. The finale begins in an optimistic mood, but the ending is agitated and quite exciting. ---David Hurwitz, classicstoday.com

 

This is Milhaud’s Concertino de printemps for violin and chamber orchestra, opus 135, 1934. A year of poor health. It isn’t Groupe des Six superficiality, but a little masterpiece of French pastoralism. The violin “is […] like a butterfly among flowers that finally disappears in a ray of sunlight” (Paul Collaer).

Milhaud recorded it three times as conductor. The first time with Yvonne Astruc, the dedicatee, and an unnamed orchestra in 1935, the second time with Louis Kaufman and the Orchestre national de la Radiodiffusion française in 1949, the third time with Szymon Goldberg and the Ensemble des Solistes des Concerts Lamoureux in 1958. This is the Kaufman. ---davidderrick.wordpress.com

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