Debussy - Ravel - Franck: French Violin Sonatas
Label: BRILLIANT CLASSICS
Baráti, Kristóf; Würtz, Klára
Among the most talented violinists of his generation, Kristóf Baráti has made a string of recordings for Brilliant Classics that have been highly recommended across the board. Baráti and his fellow Hungarian partner Klára Würtz now turn their attention to a classic trio of Francophone violin sonatas from the turn of the last century. César Franck’s Belgian origins and Wagnerian leanings hardly obscure the French accent of the Violin Sonata which he composed towards the end of his life, and in it distilled the essence of his long-range harmonic thinking. The sonata’s lucid cyclical form leads the listener on a journey of restrained passions, yet still far more overt in its passions than the sonata composed by the ailing Debussy in the middle of the First World War. This is a work riven by outer sickness and conflict yet sustained from within by an enduring love for another age of French composers such as Rameau and Couperin. Debussy’s Sonata breathes with the spirit of another age, whereas Ravel’s contribution to the genre is bang up to date – the date in question being the mid-1920s – with its flavors of jazz and blues. The second movement is ‘stylized jazz, more French than American,’ according to the composer, while the frantic perpetuum mobile finale continues his fascination with intricate, machine-like structures, in which the violinist plays for 180 consecutive bars. All three sonatas require the most assured technique and refined musicianship, which they receive in this new recording from Kristóf Baráti.