For the Record, Op. 261: Anne Sophie Mutter; Nemanja Radulovic; Sacconi Quartet

November 9, 2023, 10:35 PM · Welcome to "For the Record,"'s weekly roundup of new releases of recordings by violinists, violists, cellists and other classical musicians. We hope it helps you keep track of your favorite artists, as well as find some new ones to add to your listening!

Anne Sophie Mutter
Violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter. Photo courtesy Deutsche Grammophon.

Bach, Bologne, Previn, Vivaldi, Williams
Anne-Sophie Mutter, violin
Mutter's Virtuosi

Recorded in summer 2023 at Vienna‘s Musikverein to celebrate Anne-Sophie Mutter’s 60th birthday, this new album features the violinist with her ensemble of hand-picked musicians, Mutter’s Virtuosi, a group she set up in 2011 whose continually changing membership primarily comprises current and former recipients of Anne-Sophie Mutter Foundation scholarships. "Music moves us only when it tells a story," said Mutter, "and I’m on the trail of the next generations of storytellers." The album's repertoire ranges from Vivaldi and Bach to Previn and John Williams, via Joseph Bologne. BELOW: Anne-Sophie Mutter & Mutter’s Virtuosi perform John Williams' "Theme from 'Schindler's List.'"

Beethoven Violin Concerto & Violin Sonata No. 9 'Kreutzer'
Nemanja Radulovic, violin
Double Sens

"This album presents the core of the violin repertoire – Beethoven's Violin Concerto and Kreutzer Sonata,” violinist Nemanja Radulovic said. For the violin concerto, he has expanded Double Sens, the chamber ensemble he founded in 2008. "In our recording of the concerto, we wanted to convey a range of emotions – courage, risk, joy, love, rage, sadness, nostalgia, and magical serenity and tenderness." Rather than playing the grandly scaled Kreutzer Sonata in partnership with a pianist, he performs it here in his own arrangement for solo violin and five-part string ensemble. "While remaining faithful to Beethoven, I allowed myself to exercise my imagination." BELOW: Sonata No. 9 in A Major, Op. 47 "Kreutzer": III. Finale. Presto (Arranged by Radulovic for Violin and Orchestra)

Schubert Death and the Maiden/Beethoven Quartet Op.131
Sacconi Quartet

The Sacconi Quartet celebrates its 21st birthday with a recording of two of the finest works in the repertoire: Schubert’s "Death and the Maiden" Quartet, and one of Beethoven’s magnificent late quartets, the String Quartet No. 14 in C sharp minor, Op. 131. Schubert’s ‘Death and the Maiden’ Quartet represents a young man grappling with mortality, resulting in some of his most hauntingly beautiful music. At around the time Schubert worked on this piece, Beethoven was composing his late quartets, including the seven-movement String Quartet Op. 131 – the quartet Beethoven is said to have considered his greatest. The Sacconi Quartet writes of its relationship with these works in the album booklet: "For two decades and more, we have strived to bring this music to life. Music that we hold so dear to our hearts; music that we believe in, that we are passionate about; music that we are committed to sharing. We are still learning, still exploring, still discovering." BELOW: Beethoven's String Quartet No. 14 in C-Sharp Minor, Op. 131: II. Allegro molto vivace.

If you have a new recording you would like us to consider for inclusion in our "For the Record" feature, please e-mail Editor Laurie Niles. Be sure to include the name of your album, a link to it and a short description of what it includes.

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November 10, 2023 at 08:21 AM · For me that Mutter interpretation of Theme fron Schindler's List is a bit too much. At some point we should still let the music speak for itself, and that line is crossed here for me. Of course she is an absolute top violinist, don't get me wrong.

November 10, 2023 at 10:06 AM · I know exactly where the photo of the Sacconis was taken. It's near the town of Folkestone where they hold their annual chamber music festival. We once owned a holiday caravan on the overlooking cliffs.

November 10, 2023 at 02:19 PM · I just say, sadly, that I agree with Jean.

November 10, 2023 at 04:44 PM · I expected to agree with Jean and Richard but, happily, I don't!

November 10, 2023 at 06:18 PM · I tend to appreciate Mutter's hyper-expressionistic playing, and while sometimes I think she can be a bit much in lily-gilding, I think it works in Schindler's List.

I saw Radulovic play Khatchaturian a month or so ago, and while it was a little too 'individual' for my taste (tending in the Kopatchinskaja direction), it's a piece that can handle a bit of a rustic treatment. He's an interesting player and I'd be curious to hear him in more classically-oriented repertoire. I like his approach to the last movement of the Kreutzer here and all the colors he gets while maintaining a sense of proportion.

November 10, 2023 at 10:59 PM · Also agree with Jean. Maybe JW has shared some ideas with ASM, one of the closest violinist to the composer nowadays. But is also enriching to be exposed to fresh interpretations.

It seems to be Timothy Chooi at 0:10 in the video. Wow!

What a beautiful violin. It sounds amazing with Dominant strings. By the way, what is the E string?

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