Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Midori|
Violin Concerto in D Major / Violin Concerto 1
It's amazing how far virtuosity has come in just a little over a century. Here is the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, a work that no less than Leopold Auer declared unplayable when it first appeared. Here, Midori makes easy w... more »
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It's amazing how far virtuosity has come in just a little over a century. Here is the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, a work that no less than Leopold Auer declared unplayable when it first appeared. Here, Midori makes easy work of it. Hearing her play this piece is like watching a television commercial for a sports car; one cannot help but be awed by anything that goes from zero to 90 in an instant. And the violinist's tone is deep and lush throughout. For those who perceive emotional depth in this work, however, Midori's interpretation may disappoint. Certainly that goes for the Shostakovich featured here, a work which for all its substance nevertheless comes across as tepid and directionless. --Gwendolyn Freed
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Member CD Reviews
Beth L. from MELVILLE, NY
Reviewed on 6/9/2012...
Brings tears to your eyes to hear a violinist at her best.
The Best Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto Ever
Tallanvor Martyne | Singapore | 06/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It is amazing how some people seem incredibly fixated on the one thing you're supposedly bad for, and continue relentlessly to bring it up as evidence of your supposed inferiority to a certain other infallible reference point. Midori Goto here suffers from the same ill treatment that's been trailing her every CD recording; even her sensational (some say, divine) interpretation of the Sibelius Violin Concerto continues to receive flak from those so-called critics. Emotional depth. What is emotional depth, and how is it transcribed from the notes on a page to the singing of the violinist's strings? To me, it would be primarily the ability to manipulate the dynamics written -- and not written -- by the composer; the skill to vary tone and color and speed when deemed necessary by the soloist; to fully appreciate and give due and deep meditation for the silences, as well as the cadenzas, in a way that is both original and breathtakingly beautiful, something never heard before. Midori Goto, in my opinion, does all the above with the highest level of artistry and individuality availed on the recorded media today. The Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, over-recorded as it is, still remains the community's yardstick in which the budding young -- or old -- violinist, striving to make a mark on the classical world, is measured against. Virtually every solo violinist worth his or her salt has attempted the megalithic piece at least once. And for good reason, too, for the fireworks and melodious themes and throbbing undercurrents of the violin concerto aren't something to be tossed aside easily, but it seems now that it is, with the gamut of recordings we have available to us. The only thing that allows the listener to discern between one soloist's rendition of the piece from the next is the individuality that they manage to convey through every note played, every draw of the bow. It is amazing, therefore, that someone still has something to say through the violin concerto, almost 110 years after the composer's death. That, Midori does, with a stunning interpretation that is surely changing the way modern violinists think about the concerto. The first movement is lush and vibrant, and her singing tone is impeccable throughout. The listener will be amazed at the way she marks her stamp on the movement -- entering quietly, almost demurely, after the thunderous opening, only to soar brilliantly as she takes us on a roller-coaster ride, one in which she is in full control. Compared to, say, Sarah Chang's version, it becomes rapidly apparent that Midori had put a tremendous amount of thought into her approach of the music. Nothing is linear, and the pacing is entirely refreshing (although it might take a little getting used to -- this is as individualistic as it gets). The second movement is starkly beautiful, and the third has a drive and force and ... tenderness, at the same time, that will certainly ensure this recording of the Tchaikovsky as one of the greatest today. However, the last movement's velocity is lost somewhat in Midori's romantic approach. The outright opposite to this would be a no-holds barred, Uzi-shotgun approach, which Skwortsow does rather admirably, but therein lies the tradeoff -- devilish speed at the expense of tonal beauty and expression? I have yet to find the perfect third movement, for that reason, although Midori comes very, very close.The Shostakovich Violin Concerto is, as usual, eccentric and difficult to digest, as much of the composer's music goes. The one on the CD is the first I've heard of the piece, so I have no frame of reference in which to judge Midori's live performance, but all the notes are there, all the tonal perfection one could ask for is present. However, I get the distinct impression (which means I could be very wrong) but Midori seems rather tired toward the end of the concerto, notably the last two movements. Perhaps one of the largest hazards of having perform two gigantic violin concertos one after another, live. On the whole, though, the ink-black darkness of depression that the concerto conjures up in the first movement, the futility and -- to me -- the mocking sadness of the following movements all the way to the shocking, bizarre last are still represented excellently by Midori."
Klarenka | 05/04/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this CD for the Tchaikovsky but have ended up loving the Shostakovich more. I'd never heard the Shosty before and the second movement absolutely paralyzed me with terror and amazement--psycho jungle music! The slower movements are not as breathtakingly wonderful, but the second and fourth movements are amazing. I think the inconsistencies can be explained by the fact that Midori was performing both of these huge concertos in the same concert--I'm sure she was exhausted. The Tchaikovsky is gorgeous, but I prefer Milstein's recording. Overall, a wonderful CD to add to your collection."