Violin Concertos 4 & 11

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Violin Concertos 4 & 11

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dc.contributor.other Louis Spohr es
dc.contributor.other Ulf Hoelscher es
dc.contributor.other Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin es
dc.contributor.other Christian Fröhlich es
dc.coverage.spatial Berlin, Germany es
dc.date.accessioned 2012-07-28T04:03:14Z
dc.date.available 2012-07-28T04:03:14Z
dc.date.issued 2012-07-27
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/584
dc.description.abstract Louis Spohr (1 784-1 859) was one of the outstanding figures of European music during the first half of the nineteenth century. His contemporaries mentioned Spohr the composer in the same breath as Beethoven, and compositional luminaries of the time such as Mendelssohn, Schumann, and Chopin held him in admiration. Spohr's admirers in subsequent compositional generations, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Dvorak, and Richard Strauss, continued to regard him as a master of chamber and orchestral composition. As a violin virtuoso Spohr was second only to Niccolo Paganini during his lifetime. Moreover, he enjoyed great success as a music teacher. He trained almost two hundred pupils in the course of fifty years, and the term »Kassel School« attests to the stylistic impress formed by his effective teaching. After 1 830 there was hardly a ranking Central European orchestra whose concert-master had not been one of Spohr's pupils. In Germany and England Louis Spohr the conductor numbered among the most prominent interpreters of contemporary and older music. He was named director of the Gotha Court Orchestra at the young age of twenty-one and five years later conducted the performances at the first German musical festival in the Thuringian town of Frankenhausen. Spohr made his way to Kassel after stints in Vienna (1812-15) and Frankfurt (1817-19). He became Court Music Director in Kassel in 1822 and General Music Director in 1 847 and in these positions established an exemplary orchestral discipline and trend-setting theater and concert repertoire. Spohr the interpreter always re-garded himself as an advocate, both as a violinist and as a conductor. In Gotha and then in Frankfurt and Kassel he enlisted himself in the cause of the continuous cultivation of Beethoven's oeuvre and of the revival of great vocal works of the seventeeth and eighteenth centuries. It was during his youth that Spohr, who contributed significantly to the Bach and Handel renaissance of the romantic period, had become acquainted with what remained of the tradition of early music. In addition, the Kassel music program always offered the latest operas and, whenever possible, orchestral works as well. Here we should mention the sixty-year-old Spohr's support of the young Richard Wagner's compositions; he had to overcome considerable opposition from the formed. Spohr's support of his fellow composers brought him international esteem. Hans von Bulow termed him the »fother of musical goodwill,« a man who did not let differences about aesthetic questions interfere with his support of the younger generation. Spohr and the Berlin Court Music Director Gasparo Spontini (1774-1 851) were the first »modern« orchestral educators, and Spohr was probably the first conductor to lead an orchestra with a baton. Prejudices still exist about Louis Spohr the composer. Many critics and scholars have handed down prejudicial interpretations from one generation to the next without examination of such opinions or knowledge of the best of Spohr's musical efforts. The result has been labels such as »Mozart epigone« and »scribbler.« Ludwig van Beethoven wrote almost 350 works during the five decades of his compositional career, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy over three hundred works in only twenty-seven years, but Spohr fewer than three hundred works in sixty years. »Soft,« »sentimental,« »lacking in rhythmic and dynamic contrasts one often encounters such descriptions of Spohr's style, but they are also incorrect. The label “Biedermeier com¬poser” is iust as inapropiate and would Schubert or Schumann. It does not reflec the intellectual stance of Spohr the con vinced republican, and his personal style had developed its characteristic stamp long before the Biedermeier and did not move in that direction. To be sure, the special features of Spohr's music do not come into view unless the interpretation of his works is guided by efforts at stylistic, technical, and intellectual penetration. A continuous performance tradition (such as Spohr the interpreter helped to establish for Beethoven's symphonies and chamber music) today no longer exists for Spohr's own compositions. Before his works can be performed, they have to be studied afresh. Of course, the retrospective of a post-Wagnerian aesthetic is inadequate here: the orientation has to be to the composer's own requirements, as set forth in his Violinschule (1831). Over forty-six years Louis Spohr composed twenty-eight concertos for one or more solo instruments and orchestra, including four concertos for clarinet, two for violin, two for harp and violin, one for violin and violoncello, and one for string quartet and orchestra. His eighteen concertos for solo violin and orchestra, composed between 1799 and 1844, constitute the largest block of works in his complete oeuvre. The self-critical Spohr withheld three of his violin concertos from publication because they did not measure up to his standards of excellence. Neverthless they have been included in this cpo production. Their inclusion here offers us a clear picture the of development of Spohr's style and of the violin concerto genre in the early nineteenth century. The numeration of Spohr's violin concertos does not correspond to their compositional chronology. Concerto No. 4 in B minor op. 10 was composed a year prior to Concerto No. 3 in C major op. 7, and Concerto No. 10 in A major op. 62 went through various versions beginning in 1 809. The first edition was in 1 824. Spohr's appointment as Kassel Court Music Director marked a turning point in his life and was not without its effects for his composition of solo concertos. His years of extensive concert tours as a violinist were over, and his activities as a conductor came to occupy the foreground. Thus he composed thirteen violin concertos in the years prior to the Kassel appointment but only five works of this genre in Kassel, three of which were »Concertini,« through-composed forms without major breaks between the movements. The dates of composition of the three Concertini, 1828, 1835, and 1 839, demonstrate that Spohr was a pioneer in the area of formal innovation who continued along the experimental path he had set out on with the Concerto No. 8 in A minor op. 47 (»ln the Form of a Song Scene«j/ a work he had composed in 1816 for his Italian tour. Younger composers oriented themselves by Spohr's models: Charles Auguste de Beriot (1 802-70): Concertos Nos. 4-10, composed between 1 837 and 1 855; Henri Vieuxtemps (1 820- 81) : Concerto No. 4, 1849, and No. 5, 1860; Camille Saint-Saens (1835-1921): Concerto No. /, 1859; and, in succession to them, even Alexander Glazunov (1 865-1936): Concerto op. 82, 1903. The fluid boundaries between the first two movements in the Violin Concertos of Mendelssohn (1844) and Dvorak (1879- 82) also drew on Spohr's formal innovations. None of Spohr's through-composed concertos, however, was on the level of concertante program music after the manner of Carl Maria von Weber's Concert Piece in F minor op. 79. Such certainly very effective but aesthetically very dubious »copying«. of extramusicul processes (including displays of virtuosity) violated Spohr's compositional maxims. The development of Spohr's violin concerto style — and for that matter of his personal style in general - is to be understood against the background of the historical situation in which he found himself. After Spohr's first appearance in the Leipzig Gewandhaus, Friedrich Rochlitz remarked, this in 1 804, that Mozart was »his ideal.« Although there is something to this observation, many phenomena in Spohr's music cannot be understood apart from French operas and instrumental concertos of the revolutionary period. We should always bear in mind that Spohr was neither a virtuoso-composer of the caliber of Paganini, Wieniawski, or Liszt nor a violinist-composer like Viotti or Rode. To be sure, he initially composed his violin concertos for his own use, but for this very reason they had to be more than mere vehicles for the presentation of his own eminent mastery of violin technique. In our examination of the lines of tradition which influenced the young Spohr, it is important to remember the following chronological and geographical facts. When the violin concerto was estab lishcd by Giuseppe Torelli (ca. 1660-1 708) shortly before 1 700, solo performance on the violin was already in full flourish not in Italy but in Germany. The virtuosos Thomas Boitzar (ca. 1630-&3), Johann Paul von Westhoff (7656-7Z05J, the young musician had played on that tour but also to string quartets by Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven. Spohr was always »in a separate class, as they are in a separate class.« Here we have clear evidence of the »modern approach« of Spohr the interpreter, who always regarded himself as an advocate of each composer, a feature that Spohr the conductor also maintained throughout his life and handed down to all his pupils. It is evident that Spohr has to be regarded as Paganini's antipode. The Genoese attained to fame throughout Europe as an interpreter of his own works only, and their refinement was completely tailored to his own individual »specialties.« Of course, Paganini was known and esteemed only in Italy during the years of Spohr's major concert tours, that is, until 1821. His European-wide fame began with his 1828 tour, after Spohr's international successes as a violinist. It is worth mentioning that Paganini and Spohr had met in Ven ice in October 1816 during the latter's Italian tour and held each other in esteem. In his travel journal, a work still extant today, Spohr offers a detailed description of all the Italian's violinistic »tricks.« He also mentions that Paganini had rivals in his own country who compared the German and his different playing style to the old masters Tartini and Pugnani. For his part, however, Spohr rejected any sort of comparison between Paganini and himself as lacking in seriousness: it »is very unjust inasmuch as one should never draw parallels between two artistis of such different manner « Spohr did not hear »the wizard of the violin« until 1 830 because Paganini had declined to display his talent in front of Spohr in Venice. According to a report in the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung, Spohr is supposed to have termed the Italian the »premier and most outstanding singer on the violin.« The effect of the Paganini-phenom-enon cannot be understood apart from the aesthetic breakthrough of the years around 1 820. Momentous were the hours when Paganini performed in Spohr's Kassel base of operations and presented his just completed Concerto No. 4 in D minor to the public. The mutual respect shared by Paganini and Spohr is also reflected in the fact that on this occasion the former presented the latter with a wax portrait relief by Pierre Jean David d' Angers. It is one of the best representations of Paganini. Hearers interested only in the fasci-nation and bedazzlement offered by passive participation and by calculated stunt effects and sound sensuliuns will find llie approach to Louis Spohr's violin concertos difficult - as is also the case with the violin concertos of Brahms or Sibelius. Such music requires full intellectual and emotional involvement. The same also applies to the inter-preter, as Friedrich Rochlitz recognized already in 1 808: »The high level of melodic development requires »various styles of bowing,...which makes the performance of his solo parts difficult for other violinists who have not yet become accustomed to his style; for one feels that one is too animated, that without the use of the prescribed fingering and bowing all that is to be represented seems to lose its physiognomy and to become an indistinct, indifferent mass of fog.« es
dc.description.tableofcontents Violin Concertos 4 & 11 Violin Concerto No. 4 in B minor Op. 10 ; Allegro moderato, Adagio, Rondo. Allegretto-- Violin Concerto No. 11 in G major Op. 70 ; Adagio. Allegro vivace, Adagio, Rondo. Allegretto-- es
dc.format.medium 1 CD-Rom (45 min., 49 seg.) : Stereo ; 4 3/4 plg es
dc.language.iso en_US es
dc.rights Uninorte F.M. Estéreo es
dc.subject.lcc 762155124 es
dc.subject.lcsh Concertos (Violin) es
dc.title Violin Concertos 4 & 11 es
dc.title.alternative Conciertos para Violin No. 4 y No. 11 es
dc.language.rfc3066 eng es
dc.identifier.classification 761203919628 es
dc.subject.cdu Spo.07cd3 es


Files in this item

Files Length Size Format View Description
1. Violin Conce ... 10 - Allegro moderato.mp3 9:19 12.77Mb Unknown mp3
2. Violin Conce ... minor Op. 10 - Adagio.mp3 4:58 6.806Mb Unknown mp3
3. Violin Conce ... 10 - Rondo. Allegretto.mp3 6:25 8.805Mb Unknown mp3
4. Violin Conce ... Adagio. Allegro vivace.mp3 10:35 14.50Mb Unknown mp3
5. Violin conce ... major Op. 70 - Adagio.mp3 6:36 9.045Mb Unknown mp3
6. Violin Conce ... 70 - Rondo. Allegretto.mp3 7:38 10.47Mb Unknown mp3
Violin Concerto ... inor Op. 10 - Completo.wav 20:36 207.9Mb WAV audio wav
Violin Concerto ... ajor Op. 70 - Completo.wav 24:42 249.3Mb WAV audio wav

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