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The young violinist Alina Ibragimova is already established as an admired recording artist, standing alongside great artists of the past and present with her versions of Bach and Beethoven’s violin works. She appears on this latest release with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Vladimir Jurowski (in his Hyperion premiere) in a programme which includes a classic of the concerto repertoire: Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor, Op 64. Ibragimova’s is a glittering, knife-edge performance, her playing a portrayal in itself of the music’s passion held in control through exquisite craft. The Violin Concerto in D minor—an unusual and welcome pairing—is an early work, written when the composer was only thirteen. As with Mendelssohn’s other juvenile works it is extraordinarily accomplished and exceedingly charming.
Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto In E Minor, Op. 64
1. Allegro Molto Appassionato
3. Allegretto Non Troppo; Allegro Molto Vivace
Mendelssohn: The Hebrides, Op. 26, "Fingal's Cave"
The Hebrides, Op. 26, "Fingal's Cave"
Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto In D Minor
28th September 2012
“Ibragimova, with her wonderfully full, malleable tone, sinewy agility and deft expressiveness, proves a compelling exponent of this brilliant teenage score, combining it on this disc with an equally ear-catching performance of the later E minor Concerto...Ibragimova here adopts a style that goes hand in glove with the OAE’s, sparing with vibrato, lithe in articulation but at the same time appealingly reflective in the slow central movement.”
Awards Issue 2012
“Ibragimova's playing combines verve, brilliance and imaginative intelligence. Mendelssohn's dynamics are scrupulously observed...But if listeners that they are hearing an approximation of an 1840s performance, they should think again. No one could accuse Ibragimova of vibrating excessively, yet she uses vibrato on the modern way, to aid tone production and projection.”
“what was the thinking behind teaming together a soloist who uses vibrato, albeit tastefully, and a string band who don't? Not that I necessarily object to the result...Ibragimova's sensitive playing wins the day, with some superlative quiet moments and at all times a loyal adherence to the composer's markings and a sure sense of the music's phrasing and architecture.”
5th October 2012
“At first sight Mendelssohn might not seem an Ibragimova composer, though he’s never been far from her fingers...She returns to [the D minor Concerto] here, now burnished with the mature musician’s chameleon grasp of colours and modes of attack, and knack for febrile excitements. The same gifts keep the warhorse Concerto in E minor continually fresh.”
18th October 2012
“her subtle changes of colour and prodigious range of articulation are things to wonder at. The outer movements of the E minor Concerto are dazzling: Ibragimova sets off at a fearsome pace in the finale and not only sustains it, but keeps every detail of her phrasing crystal clear in the process”
29th October 2012
“Her absolute unanimity with the woodwind, which joins her in the scampering main theme, is breathtaking, and her occasional discrete use of portamento feels completely apt. This is a delightful, compelling performance from beginning to end, the equal of any in the catalogue.”
“Ibragimova’s performance suggests she perceives Mendelssohn as a pure classicalist. She and conductor Jurowski downplays any aspect of the music that might suggest Mendelssohn harbored any Romantic inclinations. The performance uses very little rubato, and Jurowski urges the orchestra ever forward”
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