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James Ehnes Plays Kreisler

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Audio CD, April 6, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

This CD is in very good condition with case and artwork.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 6, 2007)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Alliance
  • Run Time: 66 minutes
  • ASIN: B00006JCNE
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #355,837 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Frank T. Manheim on October 5, 2005
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This recording may be my favorite musical recording discovery in the last ten years. The Analekta recording of Canadian virtuoso violinist, James Ehnes, playing 20 Fritz Kreisler compositions for violin and piano, is relatively expensive. But it's so good that I plan to send copies for Christmas to as many of my family members scattered through the U.S. and Europe as I can afford - whether they're classical buffs or not!

For those who don't know Fritz Kreisler (and they have a treat waiting) he was probably the most beloved classical performer (violin) in his time. He was a multitalented man whose warm humanity, and generous and open spirit made audiences take him to their hearts.

Kreisler's unique 60-year musical career only begins with performance. Born in 1875, Kreisler possessed a gift for infectious melody. By the 1920's his audience-pleasing compositions - especially encores - began to encounter avante-gardist prejudices on the part of the professional musical establishment. The establishment accepted musical traditions of the past in older compositions but not in new composition. So the resourceful Kreisler introduced a series of encore masterpieces as "rediscoveries of works by forgotten baroque and rococo composers, whose manuscripts he had been found in a French monastery". Thus came celebrated pieces like Praeludium and Allegro by "Gaetano Pugnani", and "Sicilenne and Rigaudon by "Francois Franceour". After NY Times music critic, Olin Downs, reported research showing that manuscripts of Kreisler's "oldies" didn't exist, Kreisler revealed his hoax in 1935. That brought out angry recriminations by Alfred Newman and other musicologists who had been taken in.
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