Fanny & Felix Mendelssohn: Piano Music / Polk
Joanne Polk, piano
Composed by: MENDELSSOHN, Fanny & Felix
The Mendelssohns were a family who had risen to financial and social importance in Germany in the early years of the 19th century. Fanny was the first born child (1805) and Felix the second (1809). Both children showed remarkable musical talent at an early age. Fanny and Felix developed an extremely close personal relationship, as well as a musical one, with six of Fanny’s lieder having been published under Felix’s name as his Op. 8 and 9. Brother and sister also worked closely on programming concerts in Berlin before Fanny married in 1830. This symbiosis of musical minds did not go unnoticed by Felix himself, who, in 1837, commented on the similarity between one of Fanny’s preludes in B major and a fugue of his in the same key. “So here it is not only the same figuration, motion and design which astonishes me, but especially certain details . . . in the mood [of these works] . . .” Such comments motivate further comparisons of the kind that this recording makes possible. Because brother and sister often worked in the same genres, pianist Joanne Polk's fascinating recording offers the opportunity to listen side-by-side to equivalent works by each of them: two sonatas in G minor, as well as their Preludes and Fugues.