Violinist Aleksey Semenenko writes of this new release: “I decided to make it the central focus of this album by placing Schubert’s Fantasy in C after Paganini’s ‘I Palpiti’ Variations. After hearing him play in concert, Schubert was so impressed by Paganini’s technique and style that he wanted to write something similarly virtuosic, which eventually resulted in the Fantasy in C major. Some passages are indeed on a par with anything Paganini has written. However, Schubert adapted the music into his own symphonic style. In Schubert’s Fantasy in C, technical brilliance is always at the service of the musical idea. Furthermore, Schubert is not as interested in the individual instrumental parts as Paganini was.” In addition to the Paganini and Schubert, Semenenko has included works by Grieg, Tchaikovsky, and Castelnuovo-Tedesco. “Stunning technique and intonation, verve, wit, (and) beautiful phrasing.” (The Boston Musical Intelligencer) “an unparalleled level of refined musicianship and stage presence.” (The Strad)
What is a virtuoso? A musician with the secret to play things faster than anyone else for absolutely no reason. Of course it is a little more complex than that. What drives a true virtuoso is partly the thrill of speed for one thing, but also having the ability to pull the audience in and make them hang onto your every note, be it fast or slow.