I like to think up various questions and play with the several possible answers to them.
Take, for example, Ysaÿe’s “Reve d’enfant”, which he composed for his son Antoine. What kind of dreams may Ysaÿe have wanted to show to his son? And what would his own childhood dreams have looked like?
Is it a coincidence that this charming lullaby shares the same kind of atmosphere with the opening of the violin sonata Franck composed about ten years earlier as a wedding gift to him? Supposing it’s not, would it be too far a stretch then to assume Ysaÿe likened Franck’s sonata to life and interpreted the first part as a childhood dream, which would make the piece an homage to Franck?
Ysaÿe, who never met Chopin in person, arranged a couple of his piano pieces for violin and piano. Since in the end, Ysaÿewas more active as a virtuosic violin performer than as a composer, it is easy to imagine him wanting to add that extra touch of sparkle to a concert program, but where did this desire to arrange Chopin’s music, perfect in itself as a piano solo as it is, come from?