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Niels W. Gade (1817-1890) was assuredly the best known and most widely recognized Danish composer of the nineteenth century.
He was an excellent violinist, and thus wrote a good deal for the violin. His fondness for the instrument is most in evidence in the works for violin and piano, among which the three sonatas trace Gade’s stylistic development over 40 years.
We can trace Gade’s development starting with youthful imagination in the early first sonata, through a firmer hand with the Classical-Romantic ideal of the period in the second, to the experienced, more rigorous Classical lines of the third and last, with none of the heavy scent of the Late Romanticism of the day.
Niels Wilhelm Gade: Violin Sonata No. 3 in B flat major, Op. 59
I. Allegro con fuoco
II. Allegro non troppo e scherzando
III. Andantino con moto
IV. Allegro vivace
Niels Wilhelm Gade: Violin Sonata No. 2 in D minor, Op. 21
I. Adagio - Allegro di molto
II. Larghetto - Allegro vivace
III. Adagio - Allegro moderato - Allegro molto vivace
Niels Wilhelm Gade: Violin Sonata No. 1 in A major, Op. 6