Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra, Violin Rhapsodies & Dance Suite James Ehnes, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra & Edward Gardner

Album info



Label: Chandos

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Concertos

Album including Album cover


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  • Béla Bartók (1881 - 1945): Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123:
  • 1Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123: I. Introduzione. Andante non troppo - Allegro vivace10:27
  • 2Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123: II. Giuoco delle coppie. Allegretto scherzando06:16
  • 3Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123: III. Elegia. Andante non troppo07:00
  • 4Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123: IV. Intermezzo interrotto. Allegretto04:14
  • 5Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123: V. Finale. Presto09:40
  • Violin Rhapsody No. 1, Sz. 87, BB 94b:
  • 6Violin Rhapsody No. 1, Sz. 87, BB 94b: I. Lassú. Moderato04:31
  • 7Violin Rhapsody No. 1, Sz. 87, BB 94b: II. Friss. Allegro moderato (First Version)05:47
  • 8Violin Rhapsody No. 1, Sz. 87, BB 94b: II. Friss. Allegro moderato (Second Version)05:05
  • Violin Rhapsody No. 2, Sz. 90, BB 96b (Revised 1944 Version):
  • 9Violin Rhapsody No. 2, Sz. 90, BB 96b (Revised 1944 Version): I. Lassú. Moderato04:25
  • 10Violin Rhapsody No. 2, Sz. 90, BB 96b (Revised 1944 Version): II. Friss. Allegro moderato05:55
  • Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a:
  • 11Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: I. Moderato03:29
  • 12Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: II. Allegro molto02:08
  • 13Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: III. Allegro vivace02:59
  • 14Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: IV. Molto tranquillo02:49
  • 15Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: V. Commodo00:59
  • 16Dance Suite, Sz. 77, BB 86a: VI. Finale. Allegro03:53
  • Total Runtime01:19:37

Info for Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra, Violin Rhapsodies & Dance Suite

Four years after a highly successful Bartók recording with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Edward Gardner here returns to the composer on HighResAudio, with James Ehnes as solo violinist, and his Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra.

The central piece in this recording is the Concerto for Orchestra, the largest work that Bartók completed during the last five years of his life and described by the composer, in the programme notes for its 1944 premiere, as ‘a gradual transition from the sternness of the first movement and the lugubrious death-song of the third, to the life-assertion of the last one’.

It is joined by the Dance Suite, the immediate predecessor, among Bartók’s few works for full orchestra without a soloist, of the Concerto for Orchestra, though by more than two decades; and by the violin Rhapsodies, the colourful folk influences of which are revealed by James Ehnes, a specialist in the repertoire, who already has recorded the complete sonatas as well as the concertos for violin and for viola to critical acclaim [CHAN 10690, 10705, 10752, 10820].

"The Dance Suite is impeccably done, and James Ehnes’s intense, rhythmically taut playing does the Rhapsodies proud…the disc makes a worthy companion to The Miraculous Mandarin and Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta recorded by the same forces." (BBC Music Magazine)

"A fierce, lucid account of Bartók’s last great masterpiece, Concerto for Orchestra...The Bergen orchestra sounds wonderfully alive to Bartók’s rhythmic exactitudes." (The Observer)

"Gardner has his traditional well- behaved orchestra fizzing with attitude and brazen ferocity, but there is hard- earned character too, not least in the swarming string passages of the Concerto for Orchestra’s first scherzo and the comparative warmth of the movement that follows." (The Strad)

James Ehnes, violin
Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra
Edward Gardner, conductor

James Ehnes
Known for his virtuosity and probing musicianship, violinist James Ehnes has performed in over 30 countries on five continents, appearing regularly in the world’s great concert halls and with many of the most celebrated orchestras and conductors.

In the 2013-2014 season James performs in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Russia, Israel, Belgium, Norway, Germany, the Netherlands, France, and Australia. Season highlights include concerts with the Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Toronto Symphony, and a three-week residency in Melbourne, as well as performances in London, Paris, Berlin, Leipzig, Brussels, Prague, Tel Aviv, and Moscow. An avid chamber musician, Ehnes will tour with his string quartet, the Ehnes Quartet, and lead the winter and summer festivals of the Seattle Chamber Music Society, where he is the Artistic Director.

James Ehnes has an extensive discography of over 30 recordings featuring music ranging from J.S. Bach to John Adams. Recent projects include a disc featuring concertos by Britten and Shostakovich, three CDs of the music of Béla Bartók as well as a recording of Tchaikovsky’s complete oeuvre for violin. Upcoming releases include a double CD of the complete violin works by Prokofiev and a recording of Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto paired with Shostakovich’s String Quartets Nos. 7&8. His recordings have been honored with many international awards and prizes, including a Grammy, a Gramophone, and 7 Juno Awards.

James Ehnes was born in 1976 in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada. He began violin studies at the age of four, and at age nine became a protégé of the noted Canadian violinist Francis Chaplin. He studied with Sally Thomas at the Meadowmount School of Music and from 1993 to 1997 at The Juilliard School, winning the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music upon his graduation. Mr. Ehnes first gained national recognition in 1987 as winner of the Grand Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Competition. The following year he won the First Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Festival, the youngest musician ever to do so. At age 13, he made his major orchestral solo debut with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal.

He has won numerous awards and prizes, including the first-ever Ivan Galamian Memorial Award, the Canada Council for the Arts’ Virginia Parker Prize, and a 2005 Avery Fisher Career Grant. James has been honoured by Brandon University with a Doctor of Music degree (honoris causa) and in 2007 he became the youngest person ever elected as a Fellow to the Royal Society of Canada. In 2010 the Governor General of Canada appointed James a Member of the Order of Canada, and in 2013 he was named an Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Music, limited to a select group of 300 living distinguished musicians.

James Ehnes plays the "Marsick" Stradivarius of 1715.

This album contains no booklet.

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