Beethoven and more 2011 podcast #4: Experimental colors | Beethovenfest | DW | 23.09.2011
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Beethoven and more 2011 podcast #4: Experimental colors

For Julian Rachlin, each of Beethoven's violin sonatas is a challenge, revealing new aspects of the composer. 'My favorites are the ones you don't hear so often,' Rachlin said.

Pianist Itamar Golan

Itamar Golan is Rachlin's long-standing duo partner

Ludwig van Beethoven 
Sonata No. 4 in A Minor for violin and piano, op. 23: 1st  movement: Presto
Julian Rachlin, violin
Itamar Golan, piano
MP3 recorded by Deutsche Welle (DW) in the chamber music hall of the Beethoven House, Bonn, on September 17, 2011

It's unfortunate that Beethoven's A Minor Sonata of op. 23 is "not often heard," remarked Ferdinand Ries, one of Beethoven's piano students. Published in 1801 and dedicated to Count Moritz von Fries, the piece stood somewhat in the shadow of its companion work, the famous "Spring Sonata" of op. 24. Beethoven often worked simultaneously on contrasting works within a genre, but for many, this particular violin sonata seemed too odd and too bleak.

Even today, the A Minor Sonata is relatively seldom played. Nonetheless, said Itamar Golan, "I have no idea why some works within a cycle become so much more popular than others."

Julian Rachlin enjoys performing neglected works because they're often especially experimental, and he likes to draw out their power: "I always want to narrate or express something. And that includes narrating new things, with other colors than usual, in order to get the listener's attention or perhaps provoke a new understanding. I can do that with my instrument ten times better than I can verbally!"

Author: Marita Berg / gsw
Rick Fulker

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