In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.
Charlie’s second album for Warner Classics combines Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto No.1 in G minor - one of the best loved works in the violin repertoire - with two less familiar pieces: Henryk Wieniawski’s Violin Concerto No.1 in F sharp Minor and Ole Bull’s Cantabile Dolorosa e Rondo giocoso.
The other two works on the album put Charlie to the test in other ways. Henryk Wieniawski wrote some of the most challenging works in the violin repertoire, including two ferociously difficult concertos. While Wieniawski’s second Violin Concerto is more frequently performed and better-known, Violin Concerto No.1 is a dazzling work brimming with virtuosic pyrotechnics as well as expansive romantic melodies.
The last piece on the album is a relatively unknown work by the Norwegian composer, Ole Bull. This charismatic violin virtuoso, who led a colourful life and had an exciting international career, had a reputation at one time to rival that of his contemporary Paganini. Charlie himself has a Norwegian background, and recently found out that he is in fact related to his long standing hero.
“I’ve been inspired by him for about10 years… partly because of his character, the story of his life, the things that he did. He was a phenomenal violinist and he seems to almost inhabit the mythical folk culture in Norway but he’s forgotten largely elsewhere, even amongst violinists. And so I think it’s great to bring him to the surface, especially now I have this very personal connection to him…”
6th September 2011
“He rises to the challenge and produces lively accounts of both works, topped off with a short work by the 19th-century Norwegian virtuoso Ole Bull. He plumbs no imaginative depths, but then there aren’t many to plumb.”
“From the moment Charlie Siem makes his first swashbuckling entry in the Wieniawski...one feels in the safest of virtuoso hands as he goes on negotiate even the blackest of staves with an almost nonchalant disregard for their difficulty. Yet what impresses most is Siem's tonal purity and emotional intensity, which combine in the Bruch to create a reading of tender sincerity and coruscating brilliance.”
“although Siem has all the necessary technical fireworks to get round the challenging passagework of the Wieniawski and the faster sections of the Bull, the steady stream of scales and arpeggios in both works have a rather mechanical impact here...Siem offers more interest in the Bruch, shaping the cantabile lines in the slow movement with sensitivity.”
“The good news is that this is a really fine performance [of the Bruch]. Siem, young man that he still is, has been playing it since he was 16. He has its technical measure and brings freshness and relish to it, although his continuous intensity can be a bit much...The Ole Bull is quite delightful overall, not least in its contrasts and a Haydn-like surprise! Siem plays it with evident affection.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.