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  • Shchedrin: Concerto Cantabile / Stravinsky: Violin Concerto in D / Tchaikovsky: Serenade melancholique,Op.26 ~ Vengerov
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Shchedrin: Concerto Cantabile / Stravinsky: Violin Concerto in D / Tchaikovsky: Serenade melancholique,Op.26 ~ Vengerov Import


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Audio CD, Import, June 6, 2000
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Shchedrin: Concerto Cantabile / Stravinsky: Violin Concerto in D / Tchaikovsky: Serenade melancholique,Op.26 ~ Vengerov + Violin Concertos
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Editorial Reviews

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Back in 1994, Teldec struck gold when it teamed the very young Russian violinist Maxim Vengerov with conductor Mstislav Rostropovich and the London Symphony in a recording of Prokofiev's and Shostakovich's first violin concertos. The label followed that a couple of years later with the same performers doing the same composers' second violin concertos. Then, for some reason, Teldec seems to have walked away from its claim on their remarkable collaboration. With this release, EMI has come up with--what else?--more gold.

It's particularly exciting because the Shchedrin is a new and very good work, composed expressly for Vengerov and premiered by him in 1998. Written for solo violin and a full, symphony orchestra-sized string section, and called Concerto Cantabile, it is a work of haunting beauty that sustains a listener's interest over its 28 minutes with a combination of fascinating melodic and textural development, atmospheric effect, engaging emotion, and bold virtuosity--all the things a good concerto should have, made all the more compelling by the austerity the composer has forced on himself. Yet, as we should expect from Shchedrin, this is a colorful and highly expressive austerity, and its achievement is a compositional tour de force. Rostropovich conducts with keen insight into the composer's expressive aims, into the light and the dark of this work's Russian soul, and, not least, into what strings can do. The result is compelling. Stravinsky's acerbically jaunty concerto is an interesting coupling: Vengerov and Rostropovich convey its circus atmosphere, biting sense of fun, and the faux emotion of its two middle movements with evident delight. In the Tchaikovsky, they shift gears once again, making this gentle lament into a truly big piece. Throughout, Vengerov's heroically large, burnished tone is a thing of beauty, just as the exuberant virtuosity he brings to the Stravinsky and Shchedrin works still (though we've come to expect it) leaves us with our mouths hanging open. --Ted Libbey


1. Con Cantabile: I. Moderato Cantabile
2. Con Cantabile: II. Allegro -
3. Con Cantabile: III. Sostenuto Assai
4. Vln Con in D: I. Toccata
5. Vln Con in D: II. Aria I
6. Vln Con in D: III. Aria II
7. Vln Con in D: IV. Capriccio
8. Ser Melancolique in b, Op.26

Product Details

  • Performer: Maxim Vengerov
  • Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Mstislav Rostropovich
  • Composer: Rodion Shchedrin, Igor Stravinsky, Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky
  • Audio CD (June 6, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Angel Records / EMI
  • ASIN: B00004RITO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #364,005 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By MOVIE MAVEN on July 27, 2001
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have several different recordings of Stravinsky's remarkable VIOLIN CONCERTO IN D, including Anne-Sophie Mutter's top drawer performance. It is, undoubtedly, one of the finest concertos of the 20th century and if you are lucky enough to live in New York, you can see George Balanchine's brilliant ballet set to this music at The New York City Ballet. In this ballet, as the master choreographer said, one can "see the music."
Beautiful and simple, severe and yet highly emotional in Stravinsky's "neo-classic" style, this is a piece of music that the listener can return to over and over again and be fulfilled. It is nothing to be "feared" by people who think the 20th century only brought abstraction to the arts.
The combination of Maxim Vengerov, not yet 30 years old, and Mstislav Rostropovich, almost 70 years old, is absolutely unbeatable. I thought, at first, I was listening to a live concert recording, it was that exciting. This is a recording to treasure
The companion piece, Shchedrin's CONCERTO CANTABILE is new to me and positively beautiful. Rounding out this all Russian program is Tchaikovsky's lovely, more traditionally lyrical SERENADE MELANCOLIQUE.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Santa Fe Listener HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 1, 2006
Format: Audio CD
The Amazon reviewer has given us the background of Vengerov's very productive relationship with Rostropovich, and this CD reveals how the two spark each other off musically. The Stravinsky is a riot of slashes and swoops one never hears in this neoclassical work, alternating with sudden slides that I'm sure Stravinsky hardly imagined. It makes for a romantic encounter with the century's most anti-romantic composer. Come swoon over Maxim, and why not?

But first you have to troll thorugh the still waters of the Shchderin, whose "modernism" is fifteen minutes ahead of Fritz Kreisler and fifteeen years behind WW II. The operative question with this composer is just how junky his music will be this time around. In the Concreto Cantabile composed for Vengerov we get the Russian version of Corigliano's Red Violin movie socre--long legato lines interspersed with showy fiddling--but much less melodically inspired. If you're going to be this retrograde, it helps to carry a tune.

As filler we get the Tchaikovsky Serenade Melacholique, which is essentially a wordless aria in the melodic style of Eugene Onegin. Vengerov plays it to the manner born, and although the most minor thing on this CD, the Tchaikovsky makes you feel that Oistrakh has found his spiritual godson.

EMI's sonics are close and larger-than-life, which makes for great impact but also turns Vengerov's tone somewhat coarse and metallic at times. In any event, for anyone who comes for the Stravinsky, this could be the performance of a lifetime.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I agree with the other reviewers that this is an excellent performance. However, I purchased the mp3 album and in the first track (first movement of the Shchedrin Concerto) the sound cuts out between seconds 39 to 45 of play. This happens when played through the Amazon Cloud Player on my desktop PC, my laptop PC or via the Amazon mp3 app on my smart phone. The same happens if the mp3 is downloaded to my computer and played with either the windows media player or i-tunes. I contacted Amazon Customer service and they reset the album so I could get another copy using the Amazon mp3 downloader or listen through the Amazon Cloud Player. The same problem still occured. The customer service rep said that there may be a problem with the mp3 file itself and that they would look into it further.

Anyone else have this problem?

I'll give this 5 stars for the quality of the performance and hope that Amazon will eventually get me a defect-free mp3 of the first track.
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