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01.04.2010 - The violinist Renate Eggebrecht presents her fifth solo album.

The Solo Violin in Eastern Europe

Renate Eggebrecht, who has long been internationally known as a discoverer and reviver of important, but unjustly neglected repertoire for solo violin, presents her fifth solo album. It features eastern European composers from the Balkan, Poland, Estonia, and Russia, including three first recordings, and is therefore an indispensable milestone for all violinists and aficionados of violin music who are interested in music that is off the beaten path.

Two of the twentieth century’s most important female composers are represented on this recording: Grażyna Bacewicz and Ljubica Marić. Grażyna Bacewicz (1909–1969) was herself a brilliant violin virtuoso and, as a composer of music for strings, a prominent representative of neoclassicism in modern Polish music. Her Solo Sonata of 1941, which was written before that of Béla Bartók, is a kind of modern homage to Bach, technically very demanding, musically captivating, and stylistically reminiscent of Bartók and Stravinsky. Also included, as enchanting gems, are her two Caprices from 1949 and 1952.
 Ljubica Marić (1909–2003) numbers among the most fascinating figures of her generation. Not only was she Serbia’s greatest and most original musical talent, but also an outstanding artist and poetess. Shostakovitch said about her: “Everything that modern music can offer, she has realized in a large concept. She expresses herself clearly and convincingly. She speaks from the bottom of her heart.” The Sonata for Violin Solo, inspired by Bartók and folk music, is an impressive tribute to Bach written in 1928–29 “under the overwhelming impression of a sunset on the sea.”
 Sergey Prokofiev’s Solo Sonata was originally composed in 1947 for the unison violin ensemble of Moscow’s Bolshoi Theater. It quickly became a classic of the solo repertoire. It is the only work included here that is found in the repertoire of most well-known virtuosos.
 Eduard Tubin (1905–1982), who emigrated to Sweden before the Soviet invasion in 1944, was Estonia’s most eminent symphonic composer, whose best works are on a par with those of Shostakovich and Prokofiev. The Sonata for Solo Violin of 1962 numbers among his most profound and demanding creations. With its dissonantly free-tonal, sensuously captivating musical language, it is a pinnacle of the genre, a masterpiece of comprehensive architecture. Tubin’s late Suite on Estonian Dance Melodies, from 1979, is much simpler and of subtle musical charm in five miniature movements.
 Edison Denisov (1929–1996) numbers among the greats of modern Russian music, and was very successful in the West during his lifetime. His Sonata for Solo Violin from 1978, however, a highly complex, three-movement work of compact abstraction oriented on Bach, has hitherto been played astonishingly seldom, and is recorded here for the first time – a long-overdue endeavor and a worthy conclusion to this fascinating program.

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It features eastern European composers from the Balkan, Poland, Estonia, and Russia.

Renate Eggebrecht