Best Prokofiev 2?

March 31, 2005 at 05:18 AM · Who in your opinion has cut the best Prokofiev no. 2 violin concerto?

Replies (83)

March 31, 2005 at 09:19 AM · In keeping with the new rule of stating every recording I've heard and then stating my favourite:

I've heard Mutter, Shaham, Heifetz, Chung, Kogan, Vengerov, Milstein and Repin. I think my favourite is probably Nathan Milstein's, but I wouldn't be without Chung, Shaham or Kogan.


March 31, 2005 at 10:36 AM · I've heard...

Francescatti, Zhuk, Bell, Chung, Heifetz (1937, 49, 59), Josefowicz, Kogan, Milstein, Oistrakh, Perlman, Papavrami, Shaham, Vengerov, and LOTS of others that I can't remember right now.

Milstein is my favorite to. His clarity and mini nuances togheter with a direction in the music that is unbelievable makes this recording rare.

Papavrami has a daring approach at places that is fun.

Josefowicz plays very lyrical but forces the tone to much.

Kogan and Oistrakh plays in the grandioso manner that can be appeling to many, but does not quite make it for me.

I don't quite think that Heifetz hits the point in this piece.

March 31, 2005 at 11:43 AM · Hi,

In keeping with the new rule as well, I will state that I have heard Chung, Heifetz (1937, 49, 59), Oistrakh, Perlman, Papavrami, Shaham, Vengerov and also a host of others that I can't remember. I don't have any favourite recording of this piece. The Oistrakh version that I have on LP has one of the worst splices of all time in the last movement. Of the three Heifetz versions, the first is best.

The best recording that I have heard was an archival copy of a live performance by Stefan Jackiw (and no, I don't own a copy for those who will ask). I hope that he gets the chance to record this some day. That, I will definitely buy!


P.S. I don't know the Milstein. Is it available on CD? I love his first concerto (especially his live performance released on Music&Arts), so, I would be curious to hear the second.

March 31, 2005 at 01:12 PM · Milstein is avalibe in the 6 cd EMI box.

March 31, 2005 at 03:13 PM · Mutter??? As far as I know she recorded the first concerto.

Repin and Mullova are outstanding !!

March 31, 2005 at 03:30 PM · I'm familiar with Oistrakh, Kogan (2 versions), Heifetz (2), Francescatti, D. Sitkovetsky, Perlman (2), Milstein, and Stern (3). All of these versions have their points, but if I had to choose one, I'd take Kogan with Kondrashin, 1956. The recorded sound isn't great, especially the orchestra. For a better overall recorded sound, I'd choose Sitkovetsky or Stern (with Ormandy).

March 31, 2005 at 04:04 PM · I really think that Josefowicz is truest to the concerto in terms of bringing out its biting and sarcastic digs yet she is extremely lyrical at the same time in the appropriate places.

I think this work says much about Prokofiev's frame of mind and view of the old Soviet Union as this is one of the pieces he wrote upon turning to Europe (though he lived in Paris he spent much time in Moscow...moving there permanently right after the completion of this concerto). The way Josefowicz plays it brings out the longing he feels for home, but also successfully displays the dissatisfaction and/or criticism he had for the government at that point.


March 31, 2005 at 05:41 PM · Hi,

Thanks for the tip about Milstein. Come to think of it Pieter, listen to all of the Prokofiev No. 2 recordings listed here and take what you like best from each, or go your own way.

Funny story about the beginning of the first movement that I just heard recently. Apparently, Oistrakh was playing the concerto for Prokofiev, who stopped him in the opening phrase, time after time after time saying: "No, No, David, that's not right. That's not how it should sound." So Oistrakh kept trying time and time again, trying different fingerings or vibrato. Then after about the 20th time of Prokofiev saying the same thing Oistrakh finally asked "then what should it sound like?!" Prokofiev said "it should sound like a clarinet!"

Enjoy and Cheers!

March 31, 2005 at 09:02 PM · Carlos,

You are probably right. Forgive my bad memory.


PS Hey! My demeriter is back!

March 31, 2005 at 08:15 PM · I like Szigeti. I like Szigeti in this piece. I like Szigeti because...because...he makes the music scary and beautifully haunting, just like the composer.

I've heard everybody else.

March 31, 2005 at 08:18 PM · I know almost all mentioned interpretations but the most important and fabulous one was from January 28, 1957 with Michael Rabin and Cologne RSO under Andre Cluytens as conductor.Rabin is still the benchmark!

March 31, 2005 at 09:38 PM · Alan,

Aren't you referring to Prokofiev's FIRST concerto? I don't think Szigeti ever played the second.

You've heard EVERYBODY else? That's quite a claim.

March 31, 2005 at 10:01 PM · I've heard Heifetz, Perlman, and Stern. Heifetz's is of course great but I almost like Stern's more. They're about equal but different. Perlman's is similar to Stern's but not as good.

March 31, 2005 at 11:49 PM · I like Heifetz' several recordings of the Prokofiev 2. I'm listening to Kogan's 1956 recording while writing this message. It's also very good, but Heifetz is the number one for me on this work.

April 1, 2005 at 12:01 AM · of course he is!!!! :)

April 1, 2005 at 12:12 AM · If a diety indeed exists, may he deliver us. :-)

April 1, 2005 at 02:54 AM · Was it Oistrakh who was such good friends with Prokofiev? I believe that it would make him an authority on the works. Thank you for all the suggestions.

April 1, 2005 at 03:33 AM · Actually, yes, Oistrakh became close friends with Prokofiev.... but that was after Prokofiev publicly slandered his performance of it so I don't think that would make him an authority on the work (although I haven't heard it).

April 1, 2005 at 05:55 AM · Haha you are exactly right about that Enosh. Prokofiev's favorite violinist was Heifetz more so than Oistrakh. He had plans for a 3rd violin concerto dedicated to Heifetz but he died before finishing the sketches of it. The definitive recording of the 2nd concerto is Heifetz. Nothing touches it. Also his live recording of this with the Boston Symphony is amazing although the audio quality is rather poor.

April 1, 2005 at 05:56 AM · Menuhin never recorded any of the Prokofiev Violin Concertos...what a shame!

April 1, 2005 at 06:30 AM · Oh wow Nate that's really sad. Both his concertos are great. I find the second is better than the first so the third could've been better than the second. That's a shame.

April 1, 2005 at 06:30 AM · Oh wow Nate that's really sad. Both his concertos are great. I find the second is better than the first so the third could've been better than the second. That's a shame.

April 1, 2005 at 09:16 AM · Enosh,

Not quite. When Oistrakh was 19, (still studying at the conservatory), he played the Scherzo movement from the 1st concerto which Prokofiev criticised, proceeding to give him a lesson on it then and there in public. Later on though, Oistrakh and Prokofiev became great friends and Prokofiev certainly became an admirer of Oistrakh's playing; I don't know what he thought of his playing of the 2nd concerto specifically, but he certainly didn't 'publicly slander' it.


April 1, 2005 at 11:18 AM · Hi,

First off, I feel compelled to speak up: why did Carl get a demerit for apologizing for something? Can someone who gets moderation points please remove that! That is BEYOND ridiculous.

This said, Enosh, Carl is right. Plus, Prokofiev actually asked Oistrakh to do the violin version of his D major sonata, Op. 94.

Also, the version of the story that Carl relates is the real one. When Oistrakh later met Prokofiev, after the had become friends, Oistrakh reminded Prokofiev of the incident during a game of chess. Prokofiev, told Oistrakh that he vaguely remembered the incident and the unlucky you man whom he had addressed that way. Oistrakh then told him: "And do you know who that unlucky you man was?!" At which point Prokofiev replied in disbelief: "You don't say."

Nate, I have never heard of the story that you mentioned regarding a third concerto. Where did you find that out? I am curious to know since I would like to look it up. Thanks!


April 1, 2005 at 01:56 PM · As I recall, Oistrakh played a movement from one of Prokofiev's sonatas at Prokofiev's funeral.

April 1, 2005 at 02:00 PM · Tom,

He played the first and third movements from the first sonata.


April 1, 2005 at 02:03 PM · With Richter.


April 1, 2005 at 02:32 PM · I thought he played with Oborin.

April 1, 2005 at 02:43 PM · Sorry, but you're wrong.

April 1, 2005 at 04:12 PM · Have heard many of the ones mentioned above-- my favorites are Milstein and Perlman with CSO. Nothing against the others, just like Milstein's suave approach (especially the second movement) and Perlman's dashing playing (particularly the closing pages of the third movement). Unfortunately, the former is part of a box set and the latter may not be in circulation.

April 1, 2005 at 05:31 PM · Hi Christian,

Heifetz told my teacher about the 3rd violin concerto.


April 1, 2005 at 05:59 PM · Hi,

Nate: Thanks for that bit of info. Very interesting. By the way, did Mr. Friedman ever record the 2nd concerto? I have the old LP with his recording of the 1st concerto (very beautiful), and I always wondered that.

Speaking of Heifetz and a 3rd concerto, does anyone know why he didn't play the 1st concerto?


April 1, 2005 at 07:42 PM · Oistrakh was instructed by Prokofiev himself on how to perform this piece. It's inimaginable to conceive anybody performing this piece more close to Prokofiev's wishes than Oistrakh. Just as Shostakovitch did before by discussing his concerto no.2 with Oistrakh, so did Prokofiev.

Oistrakh was happy while performing this piece. Can anybody name one violinist who sounds as happy as Oistrakh in such a complex piece???

April 1, 2005 at 08:19 PM · Just to clear things up I didn't mean Prokofiev didn't like Oistrakh's playing in general I meant he publicly stated he didn't like how he played apparently the 1st concerto. I also didn't mean he slandered it, just couldn't find a better wording.

April 1, 2005 at 08:24 PM · Enosh:

I'm sorry but you must be mixed up with something else. Prokofiev adored Oistrakh's playint. The concerto no.1 was in fact, as everybody knows, originally writen for the flute. Oistrakh proposed to Prokofiev that he transcribed it for the violin. Prokofiev took up his suggestion. Oistrakh went on to write his own cadenza for the concerto no.1, and Prokofiev loved it.

April 1, 2005 at 08:31 PM · Amadeo

I think you are confusing the first concerto with the first sonata., or something like that. I never can keep his first and second sonatas straight in my head, even though I've played both!


April 1, 2005 at 09:21 PM · Benjamin:


I'm a bit confused with my "demerit".

I apologize for the wrong info. Unforgivable mistake.

I have a recording by Oistrakh performing the violin concerto no.1 with Prokofiev himself conducting. A recording of 1938 in which a whole history of both pieces are printed in the thick booklet. I got confused. I was particularly,in my mind,referring to Shostakovich's 2nd in which Oistrakh discussed the cadenza with the composer and ended up rewriting a big portion of it.

April 2, 2005 at 03:24 AM · Hi Christian,

I don't believe Friedman ever recorded the 2nd concerto..I too greatly enjoy his recording with the Boston Symphony of the 1st concerto. That was Friedman truly at his best and by far my most favorite rendition of the piece.

April 2, 2005 at 04:16 AM · In other words,

1) You need to grow up.


April 2, 2005 at 07:03 PM · I am sick of this kind of tripe from Erika. It is immature, hateful stuff, and I don't have to tolerate it.

Such posts as Erika's are part of an ongoing ethos of divisive, useless and puerile posts which make an increasingly distasteful place to visit. For some reason, this kind of stuff has been specifically targeted at me.

I think, by now, Erika has broken site guidelines frequently enough to warrant being removed from the site. In recent weeks she has received several merits but no demerits; I see this as a clear failure of the moderation system. Consequently, if Erika is not removed from this site, this will be my last post. I will not continue to expose myself unnecessarily to this kind of unwarranted abuse.


April 2, 2005 at 09:42 AM · Hi,

I second that. As a member of this site, I really think that the nonsense needs to stop. I mean really; This went to the ridiculous a long time ago. And targeting a particular site member really isn't funny, and in this case, unwarranted. It's actually getting annoying.

Carl: Sorry these people are doing this to you. It is totally unwarranted and shameful.

Really, please leave Carl alone, OK?!

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Those who want to "worship" Heifetz may, but as far as I remember, since your American, "religions" could not be imposed according to the first Amendment of your Constitution. I really do think honestly that there was/is more than one violinist (after all we are all playing, right?). What would be the point of anyone playing then?

Secondly, if people want to enjoy other interpretations of pieces on top of/or other than Heifetz, then it is their choice. These threads reveal sometimes very interesting information, but I do find that the glorification aspect of any artist really gets in the way, whether or not it is supported by historical statements or facts. Not that this prevents anyone from doing so, but targeting Carl in this case because he has farther reaching tastes, really is uncalled for. I personally do not want to see him leave as his knowledge contributes much to discussions, and I do find a diverging opinion to be thought provoking and useful.

So the bottom line: Civility at all times, if not for yourself or towards the person you are trying to denigrate, then at least to other members of the site who couldn't care less and do want free and open discussions.

Cheers to one and all, whoever they may admire!

April 2, 2005 at 12:13 PM · I've been lurking here for far too long. At this point I have been drawn out the woodwork to post here.

I agree completely with Christian. I'm new so I have no stars to give, but if I could I would. We will all have our heros and heroines in the violin world (and reading the various posts here it becomes obvious who is in the Heifetz camp, the Oistrakh camp or wherever), and simply posting your favourite violinist's name in response to the "whose is the best recording of....?" question really adds nothing to the discussion / debate.

Where we all really start learning something is when we read the "you should listen to this recording because...." comments.

Now I might well be the first to firmly nail my colours to a mast (and Carl if you remember me you will know!), but what we can all benefit from is informed discussion which tempts us back to the recordings to listen again to something we maybe missed or paid too little regard to previously.

When we need to learn about a recording to maybe inform our own interpretation (and am still a long way from being able to play most of the "real" stuff) then we should listen to as many versions as we can get our hands on, and listen carefully. Then maybe we form an opinion of whose (and this is "whose" plural) interpretation may influence us with fresh thoughts, ideas etc, but in the end it has to be our own interpretation we develop.

And the "favourite violinist" question? Well I guess we all have our favourites, but this should not make us blind or deaf to everyone else. I am currently reading a book about the great violinists (from Corelli to Perlman) and its packed full of quotes of opinions....this sort of debate has always been going on, and what I have learned from this site is that this IS opinion. We are all entitled to our own, no-one's opinion is right or wrong, just different, but all worth listening to if we also know *why* that opiniion is held.

What a dull world it would be if everyone liked the same thing, how boring the recordings would be if everyone issued a "definitive, what the composer had in mind" version and they all sounded the same.

Vive la difference, and Carl, you can rise above all this. Do keep posting.



April 2, 2005 at 07:15 PM · Szigeti's recording was praised by the composer, and i like it a lot, fantastic musicianship. Oistrakh, of course, is amzing as well.

April 2, 2005 at 09:36 PM · heifetz...just because of this one slide...

April 2, 2005 at 10:16 PM · To me the Heifetz version is supreme. Oistrakh's, is a little less personalized but still great. For modern recordings, I do enjoy Vengerov, and Repin.

April 2, 2005 at 10:25 PM · I don't know about any pro-Heifetz or anti-Heifetz factions. All I know is what I hear when I play the recordings of many great players, past and present. Just as Mozart, Beethoven, Tchakiovsky, Schubert and others stand out as great genuises of composition, then so do the recordings of Heifetz, Kogan, Rabin, Oistrakh stand out to me as works of genius - but particularly Heifetz and Kogan. A few of Heifetz' recordings I don't enjoy so much (e.g. Tchaikovsky concerto, Gluck's Dance of the Blessed Spirits), but for the most part he epitomises the very best of music making and the very best of technique. If I am in the 'Heifetz camp' it's only because I love his playing! But I also love Kogan and the best of Rabin, Milstein, Oistrakh and of some others. That's OK, isn't it?

April 3, 2005 at 04:12 AM · Carl,

Don't worry, all of us are on your side. We've had our disagreements but some of the things that have been said about you are totally ridiculous. Just don't take any of it seriously. Some people are idiots. About the real question of the thread, I personally adore Oistrakh's recording of this piece. The second movement is spectacular, especially the pizz. at the end. He soars over an orchestra like almost no one could. About the Heifetz question, I agree with the previous poster's statements. I love Heifetz's playing, but I also love so many other violinists, and I'll never be able to have a favorite. I do agree though that people who don't like Heifetz seem to be treated like second class citizens on this website.

April 3, 2005 at 05:32 PM · I don't know, but I can't get my head around this concerto. I guess I'm very conservative, but I find this concerto too much of not here nor there.

I guess I just like the old greatest hits so to speak. I do find Prokofiev no. 1 much more appealing, the 2nd movt kicks ass.

April 3, 2005 at 08:24 PM · I had to listen to it a few times to not feel that way and now it's I think it's really great.

April 4, 2005 at 07:44 PM · Carl,

Give Erika a brake.

She can learn a lot with our conversation, and I sort of like her childish like appeal to the site.

April 4, 2005 at 08:11 PM · On comments of Enosh and Nate.

Once again it amazes me to witness such a lack of respect and most of all, lack of knowledge.

I'm sure both of you have never been involved enough with Oistrakh's recordings. So be it! You lose!!!

Not only was Oistrakh a friend to Prokofiev but a messenger of the music of this great composer. No one ever equaled Oistrakh in Prokofiev's music or in any music for that matter. Oistrakh was a complete artist, not just a "violinist".

April 4, 2005 at 08:56 PM · Amadeu,

I don't like Erika's childish 'appeal'. I don't have a problem with the so-called Heifetz and Oistrakh camps, if indeed they exist so tangibly; I'm not offended by other people's tastes. However, I have taken enough crap from cretins like Erika; I am now leaving this site. used to be an interesting and enjoyable place to visit. For me, it no longer is. Stupid arguments about Heifetz and random demerits, along with the occasional foolish remark from Erika make this site unpleasant and tiresome for me to post on.


April 5, 2005 at 12:11 AM · First of all, I wasn't disrespecting anyone. I never made an opinion on this thread of what I thought of Oistrakh's recording, I was just pointing out that Prokofiev publicly stated he didn't like how he played apparently the first concerto. You're right, I'm not involved enough with Oistrakh's playing because I don't have many CDs of his and can't afford at the moment to buy more. I do however have both of his DVDs and a few CDs which I enjoy very much so I'm not disrespecting anyone. I just in general like Heifetz more.

Also, I completely disagree with you that Oistrakh played EVERYTHING better than anyone else. For example, when he plays Spanish music, to me, being the son of two flamenco musicians and understanding Spanish music, it is unrecognizable. (Heifetz also doesn't play Spanish music very correctly but much more so than Oistrakh, it's in his basic sound). And how about Tzigane by Ravel? With the way Oistrakh I recognized no Gypsy, fiery flavor at all which Heifetz does amazingly.

Those are just a couple of examples but there are more and again, I do like Oistrakh very much but I think it's quite bold and untrue to say he played everything better than anyone else. I don't even think that about Heifetz (I don't like his Bach).

April 5, 2005 at 01:01 AM · Hi,

Carl, I do hope that you reconsider your idea. While Erika may not appreciate your presence here, many people do, including myself. Is it worth to deprive the many because of the few?


April 5, 2005 at 01:27 PM · Carl -- please stay with us. Your views are valued by those of us who are not off on a toot. The price of having a good site like this one is sometimes tolerating and ignoring people who are.

April 5, 2005 at 02:12 PM · Erika:

First of all to be a complete artist has to do a lot with how your human character was formed as a human-being. Enosh mentions that Oistrakh wasn't capable of transmit the spanish soul into the music. Let me tell you a story about that. I was once playing the Saint-Saens Introduction with Oistrakh and my mother was sitting next to me. She immediately came up with the question: "That's gipsy music isn't it?" She doesn't really know music so well, that's what surprised me. And that's what Oistrakh was capable of. To play anything, with the soul required for the piece. I have thousands of recordings. Many of them spanish artists performing spanish music. And all that scratching and out-of-tuning just disgusts me. Oistrakh had a complete soul, with the perfect technique to surpass any musical style obstacle. He went beyond talent. He became the music


P.S. - Erika, please,make up with Carl. You can learn much with him.

April 5, 2005 at 04:09 PM · Christian, Tom,

You're right. Thanks for your support.


April 5, 2005 at 04:31 PM · Well Erika,

What do you have to say to all of that???

April 5, 2005 at 04:39 PM · Carl, please don't leave our board. Though I'm not always agree with your opinions (you know it) this site will not be interesting to visit anymore if you are not there. And ignore stupid comments which come from not enough educated people...

April 5, 2005 at 08:07 PM · Yes Erika, I'll be more specific.

1) Heifetz played in the movies. He should have been an actor.

2) Oistrakh played in the world of music. Before taking up a piece, Oistrakh would spend weeks or even months analizing it before even dare taking it to the stage.

Don't get me wrong. I like Heifetz just as I like Christian Ferras performing Schumann's violin sonatas and many other violinists performing whatever they perform. But,none,will ever come close to Oistrakh. Perhaps you will. Nice thought.

April 5, 2005 at 10:02 PM · Amadeu -- while I prefer Oistrakh to Heifetz, at least for many pieces, I think perhaps you paint the distinction too starkly. What bothers me about Heifetz is that he seems to me to sometimes sacrifice speed and virtuousity for soul to some extent. HOwever, I do not think you can say that he was incapable of putting soul into the music or that he failed to analyze pieces. However, I do not feel it is fruitful to try to prove that one is better than the other. They were probably the two greatest of the 20th century, and which one you prefer is a matter of personal taste. I would say that almost everyone on this site has a different opinion on various violinists. There is no right or wrong. That is where I think Erika goes too far.

April 5, 2005 at 10:38 PM · This situation always seems to be the problem on many, many forums, and deterrs people like Carl from posting good, informative posts that everyone (at least me) enjoys to read. I think that what Erika has not realized is that what people post on this board is all opinion only, and they are not "right" or "wrong" or "ridiculous". If one thinks that an idea is ridiculous, then he or she should keep it to himself or express his opinion in a way such as to not be rude.

Just throwing in my two cents,


April 6, 2005 at 12:44 AM · Erica is going through a Heifetz period it seems to me. I went through a Sinatra period when I was about 19 years old. I didn't want to hear nothing at all bad about Frank!. Now today at 43 years old, I still love Sinatra's singing but I mellowed out 100%. I realize now that everyone has their own opinion and no matter what, it is very difficult to change someone's mind about their opinion. So anyone struggling with this intense problem, try chilling out a little. I know it's not easy!.

April 6, 2005 at 03:33 AM · Amadeu, I still disagree with you. First of all, Introduction and Rondo Capriciosso was not meant to be a Gypsy piece, it was meant to be Spanish and I might add he didn't do a good job of getting the Spanish character. I also think that putting Heifetz and Ferras on the same level is absurd. It surprises me that alot of people think Heifetz doesn't have soul and that he just plays fast and technical. Not that I'm agreeing with these people because they're them, but Gitlis, Perlman, Milstein, and I'm sure more famous people have all said that it's ridiculous that people thought he was cold and I agree. I also think we should stop arguing about this because Heifetz and Oistrakh are two very different players with very different styles that bring different qualities into music and it just depends on which style you like more.

April 6, 2005 at 04:49 AM · I just heard Oistrakh's version and loved it.

April 6, 2005 at 01:01 PM · Nice of everyone to write so swiftly and often, so rightly put. I just have to (again) disagree with Enosh about Oistrakh. Remember that my mother's comments were not that of a musician, she just immediately felt the spanish soul on Oistrakh's performance of the Saint-Saens. That's what impressed me. I'm sure that one day you'll realize Oistrakh's capability of changing styles was just unmatched by any other "violin" player. His Bach sonatas for violin and harpsichord which are long out of print,are unbelievable. From his Mendelssohn to Rakov to Stravinsky etc...each composer revives through Oistrakh's playing. Perhaps it has to do with his almost perfect technical skills blended with an almost "religious" respect for the music. I would like to mention that Oistrakh wrote on his diaries of his admiration for Heifetz, Francescatti, Kreisler,Thibaud,Neveu and others. In fact he was a close friend to most of them.


April 6, 2005 at 03:26 PM · Amadeu -- I would love to get Oistrakh's recording of the Bach sonatas for violin and harpsichord. I was unaware that he had recorded them. Is it a CD? which company? thanks.

April 6, 2005 at 04:37 PM · Tom:

This is a recording that few people know of its existence. It came up on the Deutsche Grammophone label. I don't know the date,probably early to mid sixties, and I borrowed it from the New York Library for the Performing Arts,back in my Juilliard years, 1986. I transcribed the LPs into tapes. The library was renovated some 3-4 years ago and they got rid of all LPs. Including the Oistrakh/Bach violin sonatas. It was a double LP album and the harpsichordist playing w/Oistrakh is Pischner. Never released on CD. I don't know why. "Politics?"

The LPs scratched a little, but,who cares!!!

It's fantastic!

If you're truly insterested let me know, I'll be glad to make a copy for you.

April 6, 2005 at 05:28 PM · Amadeu,

I have the Oistrakh/Pischner Bach Sonata LPs (and in very good condition too - no scratches). Thank God my dad was an Oistrakh fan in the 70s!


PS They really are good. I'm eternally confounded as to why some old recordings are never transferred to CD...

April 6, 2005 at 05:31 PM · Market value.

April 6, 2005 at 06:01 PM · Carl:

I'm amazed!!!

I thought you couldn't even find Oistrakh's performance of the Franck sonata w/Richter and here you come with one of the rarest items out there.

I guess we should consider ourselves privileged.

Changing the subject a bit:

What do you think of Felix Ayo, the former violin solo at "I Music" back in the early sixties??? I have an amazing recording of his playing Bach sonatas and partitas for solo violin.

April 6, 2005 at 07:45 PM · Amadeu,

On Monday I bought The David Oistrakh Edition box set, which includes some sonatas with Richter (including the Franck), so now I have that as well!

I didn't find the Bach sonatas - my dad bought them on LP when they were first issued.


April 6, 2005 at 07:54 PM · How many CDs are in the boxed set? How much does it cost? I might like to get one for myself. Have you heard "The David Oistrakh Collection"? I have two CDs from that.


April 6, 2005 at 08:02 PM · Benjamin,

The link to that set is:

It really is more than worth the price.


April 6, 2005 at 08:09 PM · Thanks Carl.

April 6, 2005 at 08:08 PM · Carl:

What do you mean you didn't find the Oistrakh/Bach LPs? I can't believe it. I may be the only one (in this site) who actually has it.

About the box set. I got this box set some 4-5 years ago. It's amazing isn't it? Specially when comes to the short pieces at the last CD.

You will find far more incredible the box set (4 CDs I believe) of "The young Oistrakh". I found it by luck at Virgin Records here in NY. Never saw it again. The Oistrakh edition of the Prague collection box is the ultimate Oistrakh at his best. The DOREMI box set is also fantastic despite the poor quality of the sound in many of the pieces. I could go on forever...but I can't, or Erika will yell at me!!!

April 6, 2005 at 08:41 PM · Amadeu,

I do have the set - but it wasn't me who found it, it was my dad. Anyway, it is now in my posession.


April 7, 2005 at 01:15 AM · I have the Oistrakh Bach violin/cembalo 2-LP set as well. It has not been reissued on CD. The violin is very closely miked which, given the artist, isn't necessarily a problem.

Menuhin also made a recording of these sonatas with George Malcom on harpsichord, with cello backup; that too is only on a 2-LP set that has not been issued on CD, although Menuhin's earlier set with Louis Kentner (piano) and Wanda Landowska (harpsichord) are on CD.

Oistrakh aslo recorded (issuded on CD) the Bach solo G-minor sonata, which is on CD along with him playing in the 4th Brandenburg Concerto, etc.

April 7, 2005 at 12:17 PM · I've heard Heifetz, Oistrakh, Stern and several others play the Prokofievs. I've bought several.

I never regretted getting Ricci and it's the one I always grab when I want to hear Prokofiev the way I want to hear it. Ricci does more with it. All of my other favorite violinists play these concertos as if they're playing Viennese waltzes.

Ricci's way different. He uses the full palette when he paints. Ricci is also very daring in his

style. He's not afraid to go for it, while everybody else plays it so smooth, measured and manicured. Not Ricci; his daring will scare your

socks off.

April 8, 2005 at 07:18 AM · Another link to the Ruggiero Ricci - Ernest Ansermet recording of the 2 Prokofiev Violin Concertos originally released on London Records, now released by Arkiv Music:

April 8, 2005 at 07:21 AM ·

April 18, 2005 at 03:09 AM · I must bring up another recording which nobody's mentioned which, to my mind, is as good as any: Szeryng/Rozhdestvensky/LSO. In fact, sometimes I think it's my favorite of all of them. You MUST hear it. It's available on one of the Philips "20th Century Violin Concerto" sets, which are well worth having.

April 18, 2005 at 09:27 AM · Hi,

Terry, thanks for bringing that one up. I was looking through my stuff for that one. That is one awesome performance!!!!!


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