Judging simply by timings, Mintz and Sinopoli seem to have decided on a middle path in their approach to the first movement of this concerto: they take nearly a minute less over it than Mutter and Karajan (also on DG), about a minute and a half more than Perlman and Giulini on EMI. Using ears rather than a stopwatch, however, they seem to be giving by far the slowest performance of the movement that I have heard in years. It is a reading from which anything which might savour of soloistic display has been expunged, in which no note, even one of a flourish of semiquavers, is allowed to be 'merely' decorative. Mutter is fond of polishing every note like a jewel, too, but the very opening of the concerto in hers and Karajan's reading sounds positively sprightly set beside the newcomer. The moment Mutter enters the speed slackens markedly, but Karajan watchfully assures that the pulse returns with each tutti, and a sense of momentum is present throughout, even during the soloist's most wayward rhapsodizings.
Mutter's Beethoven Concerto was recorded live at the final subscription concerts of Karl Masur's long tenure as the New York Philharmonic's music director, and the beautifully played orchestral part is a tribute to his leadership. Mutter plays with a silken tone and astonishing technical command of her instrument–absolute ease in the stratospheric tessitura of the solo part, and an amazing array of microdynamic adjustments that display the infinite variety of pianissimos at her command.
Legendary violinist David Oistrakh delivers a profoundly thrilling rendition of Beethoven’s Concerto for Violin & Orchestra in D Major Op.61. Arguably, 1 of the best violin concertos ever composed, the esteemed violinist delivers with his flawless virtuosity & skillful execution. Remastered by 4 historic engineers, the sound is spacious & warm.
The interpreter is the Czech violinist Josef Suk (1929). Having completed his studies in Prague, he devoted himself to both chamber music and solo performances. Among his repertoire Suk includes works not only by Dvorak, Suk and Beethoven but also by Berg, Janacek and Martinu. The Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, with whom Suk appeared as a soloist for many years, performs here under the direction of the conductor Franz Konwitschny (1901-1962). Konwitschny first began his musical career as a violinist and viola player; he took up the baton succesfully for the first time in 1927. In 1949 he was made Director of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, and later took up the post of Principal Conductor at both the Dresden and Berlin Operas. Milos Navratil
A cosmopolitan fluent in 7 languages, a humanitarian, and a violinist of extraordinary gifts, Szeryng became renowned as a musician's musician by combining a virtuoso technique with a probing discernment of the highest order. –Nicolas Slonimsky
One of Kremer's most commanding performances, both polished and full of flair, magnetically spontaneous from first to last. The rule now seems that all the finest versions of the Beethoven Violin Concerto are being recorded live… Here is another, for Gidon Kremer's Teldec recording offers one of his most commanding performances, both polished and full of flair, magnetically spontaneous from first to last. Rarely have I heard such consistently pure tone in this work as from Kremer, and his achievement is set in place the more clearly, when my other new version offers the first recording of this work using period instruments. Harnoncourt may have expanded his sights beyond the period performance movement, but the lessons he learnt then are most imaginatively applied in his work with COE, earlier in his Beethoven symphony cycle, later in the Missa solemnis, and now in this Concerto. If Kremer regularly has you registering new detail in the solo part, the orchestral writing too is superbly realized, with magical sounds in the slow movement in particular.