Gidon Kremer- Violin Genius.

April 5, 2006 at 07:19 AM · Gidon Kremer recorded the Mozart concertos in the 1980's with the Vienna Philharmonic. He also recorded Sinfonia Concertante performed with Kim Kashkashian. This year is has been put on DVD for the first time.

I was just wanting to know your thoughts on these performances. Also, any encounters, stories, anecdotes you my have about this great violinist, thanks.

Replies (39)

April 5, 2006 at 11:56 AM · Is this DVD out in the US?

April 5, 2006 at 12:26 PM · I don't know, sorry.

Kremer's playing is fantastic. Intonation is perfect. His bow draws a wonderful sound, light, and free. The cadenza in the 2nd mvt of the Sinfonia Concertante is beyond words. He really brings out the genius of the composition.



April 5, 2006 at 05:26 PM · The thing that can't be converyed in his recordings is the fact that he has a really active and restless musical imagination and that he rarely plays things the same way twice.

Anyone whose heard his recording of the Ernst's Last Rose of Summer also knows he has a monster technique.

He's also very active in promoting new & neglected repertoire.

April 5, 2006 at 10:11 PM · He's a little crazy, and sometimes I don't like his sound, but he's always interesting! :)

April 5, 2006 at 10:46 PM · Yes, his Last Rose of Summer (Ernst) is the best. Beats Vengerov & Milstein. His Milstein Paganiniana is also the best. Beats Milstein & Accardo too.

April 5, 2006 at 11:15 PM · Milstein recorded The Last Rose? I was unaware of this.

April 6, 2006 at 12:35 AM · Michael

How much is the DVD? And where can you get it, ie. just HMV or Myer would have it as well?

April 6, 2006 at 01:02 AM · I bought it at Readings. $59 AUS ($42US). It is a 2 disc set. Mozart Conc 1-4, and Conc 5 and Sinfonia Concertante.



April 6, 2006 at 01:33 AM · Kremer certainly takes the cake for a spirited recording of The Last Rose...the recording of course has it's problems, this is indeed my favorite recording of the piece for the gutsy performance. However if you want technical perfection check out Juliette Kang on Discover International, the recording is perfect with the exception of the dynamics.

Check out Kremer playing anything by Schnittke...sure to please

April 6, 2006 at 01:41 AM · The DVD set (US version - NTSC) can be ordered here:


April 6, 2006 at 08:57 AM · Apologies on the Last Rose. Instead of Milstein, I meant Ricci.

To Jonathan, Sorry, I had the Juliette Kang but I did not like it. Sorry again. But that's my opinion. Regards - Lee

April 7, 2006 at 12:16 AM · No need for apologies Cheng! I don't think too highly of her recording either, it is however technically quite superior to anything recorded.

April 7, 2006 at 12:17 AM · The Vengerov recording on his Debut CD is quite good.

April 7, 2006 at 03:58 AM · Yes Vengerov on Biddulph - good but not great in the Last Rose - still Kremer is best for me.

April 7, 2006 at 04:10 AM · What recording is his Erlkonig that one always so much about on?

April 7, 2006 at 06:04 AM · There is a DG recording with Oleg Maisenberg - Schubert, Ernst, etc. It looks like out of print. The two best Erlkonig for solo violin that I like are Kremer's (DG) and Repin's (Erato). I have both CDs.

April 7, 2006 at 02:42 PM · My friend Ingolf Turban has recorded my favorite interpretation of the Erlkonig

April 7, 2006 at 10:55 PM · Yes, Jonathan. That's be my next great Ernst CD acquisition. I have been eyeing that CD for some time. Regards - Cheng

April 8, 2006 at 12:22 AM · Hi Cheng, I highly recommend this CD...has all of the Polyphonic studies, played beatifully, as well as many rare Ernst pieces. Buy it!

And no, I don't work for Claves :-)~

April 8, 2006 at 10:54 PM · Yes indeed Jonathan - will do. The other stuff is worth having. I did not like the Ricci Polyphonic Etudes (Dynamic). He should have retired early from recording & concert giving.

April 9, 2006 at 01:21 AM · Agreed, Ricci should have recorded these earlier.

April 9, 2006 at 05:51 PM · It was not so long ago that I heard Ricci playing all of the 24 Paganini caprices at Carnegie Hall afterwhich he played the "God Save the .... var."

It was an amazing display of awesome violin wizardy.

If he is getting up there in age, he deserves all the praise from us for he has made an enormous contribution to classical discography as he is the most recorded classical artist to date. He has also been very much a champion of new music throughout his life, and has been teaching master classes "the world over".

A true icon in the world of violin virtuosos.


And as for Gidon, he has been one of my favorite violinists since I started violin back in Odessa when I was 7 years old.

He had come to us many a time to play recitals.

He is a genius, and it is thanks to him that the world knows such composers as Alfred Shnittke, Sofia Gubaidulina, Astor Piazzolla and so many more.

He has taken championing new music to new heights.

The range of his dynamics, colors, and tempi are amazing.

BTW, did anyone mention that Karajan had proclaimed Gidon to be the "Greatest Violinist" in the world in the early 1980's. That is how he was billed/promoted by his management for concerts.

April 9, 2006 at 06:15 PM · I love his Brahms with Bernstein.

April 9, 2006 at 06:32 PM · You mean the Brahms with a Prelude by Max Reger as the cadenza? very cool indeed.

Also his Beethoven with Shnittke cadenza is quite unique to say the least.

April 9, 2006 at 07:25 PM · Gennady,

What are YOUR favourite cadenzas for the Beethoven VC ?

April 9, 2006 at 08:02 PM · The Schnittke cadenza is great...Gennady have you heard the recording by the person the cadenza was written for? Mark Lubotsky, does a fine job with it!

As well check out Ferdinand Davids cadenza for this concerto, absolutely great, I will email it if you would like. Vieuxtemps' cadenzas are also highly well Ferdinand Laub wrote a dandy set!

April 9, 2006 at 08:18 PM · I think the piano is strange.

To be honestly, I think the Joachim cadenza is a lovely bit of composing and it's one of the few cadenzas that I don't think needs to be replaced.

April 9, 2006 at 08:30 PM · Mattias, are you out there? I know you perform with the David cadenza right?

April 9, 2006 at 10:26 PM · Gennedy -

Yes, with the Reger cadenza. I haven't found a recording that I like better

April 9, 2006 at 11:33 PM · Benny,

For the Beethoven, I do like the Kreisler cadenza the best.

The Shnittke cadenza offers basically two pieces for the price of one ticket :)


Peter S.

I do love the way Gidon plays the Reger Prelude as the cadenza to Brahms, but still my prefered cadenza for the Brahms concerto is the Joachim.

I wrote one myself when I was studying with Yfrah Neaman. He liked it quite a bit.

April 10, 2006 at 09:57 AM · Like you Gennady I prefer the Kreisler cadenza for Beethoven and Joachim's for the Brahms, yet it is interesting to hear Kremer's choices too.

I think of Gidon Kremer as one of the Greats. He is a truely charismatic player, and never ceases to amaze me. A few years ago I heard his Bach Chaconne in a church and the silence before the applause Wow ! It was some experience !

April 10, 2006 at 10:27 AM · You gotta love Gidon's glasses he had in the early '80's. Big magnifying glasses.


April 10, 2006 at 10:35 AM · Has anybody seen Spring Symphony with Natasha Kinski as Clara Schumann? Well, Kremer played the Paganini Caprice No17 (he played Paganini's role). Amazing stuff - especially the central octave sections on the G & D strings! Jaw-dropping!

April 10, 2006 at 03:03 PM · Kremer is so nimble... Everything he plays sounds not only perfect but beautiful.

April 10, 2006 at 04:57 PM · Come to think of it...Wieniawski's cadenza for the Beethoven is nice as is the Schradieck...Spohr's is ok, very short. There's plenty to choose from!

April 10, 2006 at 08:57 PM · kremer is as much a composer as a performer. his musical logic is unassailable. maybe his heart is not on his sleeve like some other players but he is always so respectful of the pieces he plays and i can't imagine him doing anything excessive or vulgar. he is a consummate artist.

and i'm glad he got rid of the big old school glasses. they made him look like one of the rappers in Run DMC. the new ones fit him much better :c)

April 12, 2006 at 06:31 AM · Pieter - The Ernst Erlkonig can be found on:-


Violin Works

Gidon Kremer, Oleg Maisenberg, Isabelle van Keulen, Tabea Zimmermann, David Geringas, Alois Posch, Eduard Brummer, Chamber Orchestra of Europe


Polonaise in B flat, D. 580

5 German Dances, D89 (D90)

Rondo for Violin and Orchestra in A D. 438

Five Minuets and Trios for String Quartet, D 89

Konzertstuck (for Violin and Orchestra) in D major, D345

Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst (1814-1865)

Grand Caprice sur Le Roi des Aulnes de F. Schubert, Op. 26

Franz Liszt (1811-1886)

Soiree de Vienne S 427 (after Schubert)

DG 4CDs 4698372

Regards - Cheng

April 12, 2006 at 08:36 PM · The Erlkonig Cd I have with Kremer/Maisenberg inc.


Der Erlkonig


Grand Duo concertant

La Lugubre gondola

Valse-Caprice No 6


Variationen fur violine und klavier uber Trockne Blumen (Die Schone Mullerin)



Brilliant ! Must have !

June 30, 2008 at 05:54 PM · hi. i have just discovered recordings ov vasco abadjiev -bulgarian violinist at youtube. there is a rec. of ernst the last rose of the summer. they have put the kemer recording from 1970 tchaikovski comp.from gidon kremer historic russian archives 10 cd box cd. 10 track 4.can somebody compare this recordings and tell this people not to steal other peoples property. thanks. ip

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