Reger: The Romantic Violin Concerto, Vol. 11
Tanja Becker-Bender, violin; Konzerthausorchester Berlin; Lothar Zagrosek, conductor
Max Reger (1873-1916)
Reger is one of those composers more talked about than listened to--caricatured as a prolific writer of organ music with a penchant for dense musical textures. But he certainly wasn't averse to a good tune: the two Romances abound in lush lyricism, while the magnificent A major Violin Concerto shows him continuing in the tradition of the violin concertos of Beethoven and Brahms. An unashamedly symphonic work, it's nearly an hour long--around the same length as the nearly-contemporary Elgar Violin Concerto. No less a figure than Adolf Busch championed it--first performing it when he was just sixteen.