Sonatas for Two Violins: Prokofiev, Gorecki, Ysaye (2020)

Ysaye, Gorecki, Prokofiev

Maria Milstein, Mathieu van Bellen

Violinist Maria Milstein returns to NativeDSD with her 8th album in DSD Stereo and DSD Multichannel. On Sonatas for Two Violins from Challenge Classics, Mathieu van Bellen and Maria Milstein have chosen an unusual format for their album - two violins without accompaniment playing rarely performed works by Prokofiev, Ysaye, and Gorecki.

The setting of this album - two violins without accompaniment - is no ordinary combination, and the repertoire, though encompassing several style periods from the Baroque to the 21st century, is much smaller than that of a more standard duo such as violin and piano. It is particularly striking that there are very few major works written for this setting, even compared to other string instrument combinations such as violin/viola or violin/cello. This has to do with the fact that the possibilities in which two instruments of the same range offer are more limited than those offered by two instruments of higher and lower registers combined - this seeming lack of variety in range and effects have stopped most composers from using this medium for their works. There were however composers who took this limitation as a challenge and created true masterpieces with a fascinating sound world, making one forget about the “restricted” means available. 

"When choosing a program for this album, we were adamant to present works which, rather than using virtuosic violin display as a means to an end, are masterworks in their own right, where the virtuosity of writing is a simple tool used to create breathtaking landscapes and thrilling stories. Three different countries and three different universes, though all three composed within less than half a century - the Sonatas for Two Violins by Serguei Prokofiev, Henryk Gorecki and Eugene Ysaye show with their incredible variety how exciting a violin duo can be." - Mathieu van Bellen and Maria Milstein

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Maria Milstein

Born in Moscow in a family of musicians, Maria Milstein (1985) starts the violin at the age of five. Her family moves to France in 1991. She studies in Fiesole with Pavel Vernikov, in Amsterdam Conservatory with Ilya Grubert and in London with David Takeno. Between 2011 and 2014 Maria is Artist in Residence at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel, in the class of Augustin Dumay.
Maria is a prizewinner of major international competitions and awards such as “Città di Brescia” and “Premio Rodolfo Lipizer” in Italy, the ARD Competition in Munich (Piano Trio Category) and the Lyon International Chamber Music Competition (both as violinist of the Van Baerle Trio), as well as the Concertgebouw Vriendenkrans Competition and the Kersjes Prize in the Netherlands. She has been selected for international concert tours such as the “New Masters on Tour” of the Holland Music Sessions, or the ECHO “Rising Stars” with her Van Baerle Trio.

Maria appears as a soloist with the National Orchestra of Belgium, the Brussels Philharmonic, the Royal Chamber Orchestra of Wallonie, the Musica Viva Orchestra of Moscow and Amsterdam Sinfonietta, and in 2013 she collaborates with the Liège Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for the recording of Saint-Saëns works for violin and orchestra (Zig-Zag Territoires, 2013).
Maria performs as a soloist with conductors such as Michel Tabachnik, Jean-Jacques Kantorow, Christian Arming, Christopher Warren-Green, Alexander Rudin, Augustin Dumay, Reinbert de Leeuw and Ivan Meylemans. A highly appreciated chamber musician, she plays together with renowned artists such as Elisabeth Leonskaja, Gary Hoffman, Abdel Rahman El Bacha, Hannes Minnaar, Philippe Graffin, Liza and Dmitri Ferschtman and Alexander Kniazev.

Since 2004, Maria forms together with pianist Hannes Minnaar and cellist Gideon den Herder the Van Baerle Trio. Very successful at several international competitions, the trio has released two albums: a debut CD with works by Saint-Saëns, Loevendie and Ravel (Etcetera Records, 2012), which received an Edison award in 2013 in the category “best debut CD”, and an album dedicated to Mendelssohn piano trios (Challenge Records, 2014), with the exclusive recording of the early version of Mendelssohn’s First Trio. Both CD’s received lavish reviews in the international press. The Trio tours extensively in Europe, performing at major venues such as the Musikverein in Vienna, the Philharmonie in Cologne, Cité de la Musique and Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Bozar in Brussels, the Philharmonie in Essen and many others.
Since 2014 Maria holds a teaching position at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. Maria plays on a violin by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume from 1860.

 

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Sonatas for Two Violins: Prokofiev, Gorecki, Ysaye (2020)

Ysaye, Gorecki, Prokofiev

Maria Milstein, Mathieu van Bellen

Digital Converters: dCS & Merging Technologies
Mastering Engineer: Bert van der Wolf
Microphones: Sonodore
Producer: Bert van der Wolf
Recording Engineer: Bert van der Wolf, Northstar Recording Services BV
Recording location: Galaxy Studio’s, Mol, Belgium
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DXD

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This album is available as ST+MCH download (Stereo + Multichannel)
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CC72807: Sonatas for Two Violins: Prokofiev, Gorecki, Ysaye
01:03:56   Select quality & channels above
Tracks.
1.
Prokofiev - Opus 56 I Andantre cantabile
Prokofiev
00:02:49   N/A
2.
Prokofiev - Opus 56 II Allegro
Prokofiev
00:02:59   N/A
3.
Prokofiev - Opus 56 III Commodo quasi allegretto
Prokofiev
00:03:59   N/A
4.
Prokofiev - Opus 56 IV Allegro con brio
Prokofiev
00:05:28   N/A
5.
Gorecki - Opus 10 I Allegro molto
Gorecki
00:08:14   N/A
6.
Gorecki - Opus 10 II Adagio sostenuto
Gorecki
00:03:53   N/A
7.
Gorecki - Opus 10 III Andante con moto
Gorecki
00:04:07   N/A
8.
Ysaye - I Poco Lento Maestoso Allegro fermo
Ysaye
00:11:46   N/A
9.
Ysaye - II Allegretto poco lento
Ysaye
00:08:13   N/A
10.
Ysaye - III Allegro vivo e con fuoco
Ysaye
00:12:28   N/A

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