Bartók: Violin Concertos Nos. 1 & 2

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Bartók: Violin Concertos Nos. 1 & 2



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61 minutes


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Bartók: Violin Concertos Nos. 1 & 2


Violin Concerto No. 1, BB48a, Sz 36

Violin Concerto No. 2, Sz 112



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Bela Bartok: Violin Concerto No. 1, BB 48a

I. Andante sostenuto

II. Allegro giocoso

Bela Bartok: Violin Concerto No. 2, BB 117

I. Allegro non troppo

II. Andante tranquillo

III. Allegro molto

Classics Today

“Gyorgy Pauk plays both works with excellent intonation, secure technique, and a sure sense of style. Tempos in the outer movements of the Second Concerto are a bit on the slow side, but never excessively so; Pauk and his conductor really breathe with the music. It!|s a very Romantic, rhapsodic interpretation, made all the more impressive by a spacious recording that allows the orchestra plenty of room to expand, but never at the expense of the soloist. In fact, the first movement of the First Concerto and the nocturnal slow movement of the Second are among the most poetic and atmospheric on disc. A fine achievement at a great price.”

Gramophone Classical Music Guide


“The strongest aspect of these performances is soloist Gyorgy Pauk's supremely idiomatic playing. He may not have the virtuosity of a Mullova or Midori, but there are only one or two moments when he sounds uncomfortable with the technical demands, and the Hungarian idioms of Concerto No 2 flow naturally from his bow, unexaggerated yet full of character.
He's strikingly successful, too, at seeing each movement as a whole. It's so easy for the first movement of Concerto No 2, with its dramatic mood-swings, to sound disjointed, but here the march-tread of the opening remains somewhere in the background through most of the movement, giving it real coherence.
Rob Cowan, reviewing a recent Shaham/ Boulez recording, commented that performances of this concerto which elongate Bartók's meticulous timings tend to miss something of the music's fiery spirit, and this version might also be thought rather easygoing by the side of Mullova, who stays close to Bartók's suggested tempos. She benefits, too, from a more sharply-focused recording. Though well balanced, this one lacks the last degree of definition and perspective – essential if Bartók's marvellously detailed orchestration is to make its full effect. The orchestral playing is accurate and spirited, but doesn't have the refinement that allows an orchestra like the Berlin Philhar- monic to give such a strong sense of direction to the first movement of the First Concerto, and to accentuate the grotesque features of its second movement.
Pauk's interpretations, thoughtful and strongly felt, are essential listening for Bartók enthusiasts.”

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