Who is your favourite violinist for Mendelsshon violin concerto in E minor

November 2, 2011 at 02:11 PM · I've been searching for an interpretation that suits my taste. I am getting a little frustrated cause I can't seem to find one. so can you suggest some soloists that you guys really like?

Replies (30)

November 2, 2011 at 03:12 PM · Hilary Hahn's is my personal favorite. Some may say it's not emotional or passionate enough, but I feel that her strong qualities of precision, clarity, and elegance match Mendelsshon's compositional style very well!


November 2, 2011 at 03:56 PM · Eugene Ysaye but as far as I know he only recorded the last movement. It was done in one take at lightening speed and is absolutely briliant.

November 2, 2011 at 04:12 PM · I like Janine Jansen for the Mendelssohn.

November 2, 2011 at 04:16 PM · Steven - there are so many terrific recordings out there that it must be possible to find one that "suits your taste." Of course, none of us know what you like, so our recommendations won't necessarily help --- but, since I have several recordings I like, I'll list them (not necessarily in order of how much I like them).

Robert McDuffie

Shlomo Mintz


Anne Akiko Meyers

Nicola Benedetti

Kyung-Wha Chung

(Also have Hilary Hahn's recording; Victor A's post describes exactly why I respect it but don't enjoy it.)

November 2, 2011 at 06:15 PM · My favorite is the first I ever heard: Francescatti.

November 2, 2011 at 08:57 PM ·

November 2, 2011 at 09:53 PM · Im not sure about the piece of music in question but if he has recorded it I am very partial to almost everything that is performed by James Ehnnes. He is very expressive and seems to have the ability to make any piece sound incredible and alive without being to showy or flashy or dramatic while playing. I think he is one of the greatest modern violinists out there performing today. I do also very much like Zukermans performance of this this piece by Mendellson

November 2, 2011 at 10:44 PM · I agree with Janine Jansen. Close second would be Niccola Benedetti. Most other artists, I find they take the piece too fast. This includes Heifetz. I also like a local artist's version especially.

November 3, 2011 at 01:48 AM · Anne Sophie Mutter is my personal favorite,she made me fall in love with the concerto.

November 3, 2011 at 02:59 AM · GRUMIAUX

November 3, 2011 at 04:04 AM · Greetings,

I love the Milstein versios but at the end of the day agree with Scott. There is a DVD of Grumiaux playing the Mendelssohn live which is just so right its mesmerising.



November 3, 2011 at 04:35 AM · Heifetz, Friedman, Kreisler.

November 3, 2011 at 04:59 AM · thanks for the responses. it's like the simplest concerto and yet not many violinists are able to perform it perfectly, just like the Beethoven concerto. I will check out those suggestions. One thing i noticed however was how similar Kreiser's recording is to Heifetz's. sounds are different but fingering and speed are almost identical. Anyway, keep them coming. thanks !

November 3, 2011 at 06:01 AM · Mmmm,

would respectfully venture to suggest that heifetz and Kreisler used radicallly different fingerings. The latter avoided his fourth finger as much as possible. The former is much more concerned with playign single phrases on one string irrespective of how high up te violin one ends up to cite just two differences.



November 3, 2011 at 08:28 AM · Buri,

interesting. cuz I found a recording on youtube of Kreisler playing the concerto. I was expecting a totally different interpretation from Heifetz knowing the style of Kreisler. For example, they both used open E in the opening passage. but then..i found another Kreisler's recording with a different style. Maybe it was just the particular recording that he had a different fingering. Apologize for that

n yea I forgot about Mutter's interpretation. It's amazing. I just checked out Hilary's. I thought it's a bit rushed? I guess I will keep checking them out

November 3, 2011 at 09:44 AM · Alfredo Campoli

November 3, 2011 at 11:14 AM · greetings,

Steven, no need to apologize. Kreisler changed his fingerings a lot so there is bound to be some intersection. Also worth remembering that Heifetz revered Kreisler.

But Heifetz developed his own very elegant way of fingering which is well worth studying in depth. To do so one need only worl through the portfolios of Heifetz editions. Lokk at the fingerings he used in Glazunov Meditation fro example.



November 3, 2011 at 12:02 PM · I don't have a single favorite for the Mendelssohn, though re Grumiaux and the feeling of just spot-on rightness, that's how I feel about his Beethoven on the same DVD. But speaking of DVD's, I'd like to remind people about "The Art of Violin". Early on in the program they cobbled together the 1st mvt. of the Mend. with a number of players taking over one from the other. It's most interesting!

November 3, 2011 at 12:17 PM · I'm pleased someone mentione Alfredo Campoli!!

His was one of the great peformances, and I experienced one live performance myself from within the orchestra.

I would also mention Kreisler and Heifetz, among others who have exceptional performances.

Ehnes, great player but I don't have experience of his Mendelssjohn. Some of the other contemporary players mentioned, I won't comment on...

November 3, 2011 at 01:25 PM · I discovered the Mendelsohn, then in the 1980s on a vinyl 33" Deutsche Grammophon LP together with the Bruch, played by Cho Liang Lin. I wonder if that LP has been later brought out on CD. Anyway, since that recording is really etched in my memory, I tend to compare all other performances with Cho Liang Lin, and to be honest, I still prefer his version. It is also quite personal, i.e., rather nonstandard. Any other people know what I am talking about? Apart from that I also very much like Menuhin's classical EMI recording.

November 3, 2011 at 01:40 PM · I second (or is that third) Campoli. We had a record of his performance in the family when I was a child and I loved it. I remember it as wonderfully sweet.

November 3, 2011 at 02:31 PM · From Stephen Brivati:

"I love the Milstein versions but at the end of the day agree with Scott. There is a DVD of Grumiaux playing the Mendelssohn live which is just so right its mesmerising."

Dear Sir,

In honor of this occasion I am going to take up prunes. Thank you.

November 3, 2011 at 03:11 PM · My favorites are many of the historic recordings already mentioned; Heifetz, Milstein, Francescatti, Grumiaux, and Kreisler.

Nigel Kennedy's is good too.

November 4, 2011 at 01:53 AM · Grumiaux's sound is excellent. I have that dvd of his live performance but he made too many mistakes that bothered me alot so i eventually stopped listening to him. Not saying mistakes ruined the performance. Perlman for example make mistakes too but i felt he has much more to give so I keep listening to him. not the same for Grumiaux although I own many of his CDs.

and Peter ..yea I feel you. some contemporary violinist i just don't understand. I had the pleasure of listening to James Ehnes live playing Tchaikovsky. I really liked his technique and interpretation but his sound did not have the volume to fill the concert hall. maybe it was just that one performance but yea. left me kinda disappointed cause it was a great violinist and a strad but it did not produce the outcome i expected

November 13, 2011 at 10:44 AM · Kremer with Zubin Mehta. Granted, this recording is almost impossible to find, but the thinness of the higher registers are just simply amazing. It sounds so fragile and sensitive and airy.

November 13, 2011 at 04:12 PM · Viktoria Mullova's recording is excellent.

November 14, 2011 at 05:05 AM · I say Fritz Kreisler no contest.

November 14, 2011 at 05:29 AM · I like Campoli's version a lot, but for me it's Hilary Hahn hands down. Her interpretation just clicks.

November 14, 2011 at 05:59 AM · I love Milstein's recording of the Mendelssohn. There truly is beauty in simplicity!

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