Beethoven's birthday gift to us (best Violin Concerto performance on video)

December 17, 2020, 11:12 AM · Zino Francescatti: In my opinion, the greatest performance of the Beethoven Concerto (and on a beautiful video)

Replies (12)

December 18, 2020, 9:48 AM · Very enjoyable, Sandy. I like Kyung Wha Chung's performance too:

December 18, 2020, 1:52 PM · Grumiaux
December 18, 2020, 4:00 PM · Hilary Hahn
Edited: December 18, 2020, 8:36 PM · Listening to Francescatti's Mozart (with Buno Walter) when I was a boy, I was gobsmacked by the purity of his tone that, to me, transcended the limitations of the instrument in its incandescence, creating a kind of disembodied beauty that I tried to describe to my mother. (She was an indulgent, non-classical music fan who humored me by agreeing it was "very pretty.") ANYWAY, listening to this version of the Beethoven I delighted once again in that hypnotic tenderness that brought me back to the first time I heard him. Thanks so much, Sander!
December 19, 2020, 2:44 AM · Yes Francescatti--togheter with Menuhin Oistrach and Perlman
December 19, 2020, 2:44 AM · Yes Francescatti--togheter with Menuhin Oistrach and Perlman
December 19, 2020, 9:51 AM · Thanks for the reference, yes, I like that very very much. Somehow a very "humane" but of course also almost perfect performance.
December 19, 2020, 11:26 AM · One of my favourite violinist recordings. I'm glad he lived long enough to make such a high quality live performance. Not bad for a 70 year old! His interpretations are always rather simple, with no tricks or exaggerations or special effects, but the energy and beauty he gives to the notes carries the music through.

Now to steer the topic back to my favourite hobby - gut strings! He appears to be using all Eudoxa wound gut strings in the video, although I've heard that he used a Kaplan Golden Spiral D. The way he uses huge bows on the G string I think is typical of the older generation of gut string players - it involves more bow speed work but creates a special feeling of high energy, which couples well with his rather electric vibrato. His sound so strong yet still with sweetness, not forced.

December 19, 2020, 11:29 AM · Joseph Szigeti, especially the two versions with Bruno Walter.
Edited: December 19, 2020, 2:55 PM · Well said, Mr. Kruer. I'd have put a heart (for approval!) on your comment if the site allowed.
And yes, Zino did quit recording and concertizing before he declined (unlike Elman and Stern, for instance...).
December 19, 2020, 3:52 PM · Everyone should play this next year in lieu of, if not also because of this year. I'd travel within North America if possible to hear Anne-Sophie Mutter play it. At least downtown Toronto.
December 19, 2020, 4:18 PM · No wonder he was good at Beethoven's violin concerto. He was peforming it when he was 10 years old !

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