I recently purchased the Dutton recording of Ginette Neveu playing the Brahms Violin Concerto (w/Suk Four Pieces, Op.17; Chopin Nocturne No. 20; Ravel Tzigane; Falla Danse Espagnole; Dinici Hora Staccato--budget priced to boot!) and I must say I am stunned by her Brahms! It is AMAZING!!!!! Her playing transforms the concerto. For years, many recordings (and I have heard many) have turned the Brahms into a soupy pseudo-violin-symphony, but Neveu plays the heck out of the concerto--controlling it like an honest dialogue between soloist and orchestra.
I was floored by her control of the instrument, her audacious attack on double stops and chords, and her impeccable sonority. This was, sadly to say, a late purchase, but I think it is probably the best version of the piece I have ever heard, with unbelievable clarity, passion and drama. To me, it sounds like the way I wish I could play it. Hearing this disc has also allowed me to get a sense of the tragedy of her early death, because, undoubtedly, she would stand higher than many of the men in her generation. The Poulenc sonata, dedicated in memory to Neveu, now holds an even more special meaning to me! (I also see where Mutter and Hahn have gotten their inspiration from for their Brahms recordings.) What a disc!! Any thoughts?
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