The First and the Last Romantic

Noé Inui, Vassilis Varvaresos

(2 press reviews)
Original Recording Format: DSD 256
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The First and Last Romantic features violinist Noe Inui and pianist Vassilis Varvaresos.  It is one of the best selling albums in the Navis Classics catalog at NativeDSD Music.  Recorded and Produced by Daan van Aalst in Stereo and Multichannel DSD 256.

Comparing and contrasting two monumental violin sonatas by great composers from entirely separate generations can be a fascinating exercise, but in this case, only yields incidental relationships.

Richard Strauss’s Sonata in E-flat major Op. 18 can be considered a youthful work but, given the extra impetus of inspiration gained from new-found love in his future wife the singer Pauline de Ahna, this is also an uncompromisingly demanding piece that saw the composer at the top of his game at this point in his development.

Robert Schumann’s Second Violin Sonata emerged after frustration in his failure to establish himself as a conductor in Dusseldorf but during a period of ongoing compositional productivity before his final illness took hold. Written almost immediately after the First Violin Sonata it can be seen as the big brother to its predecessor; taking the genre further, the trained muscles now set for even more ambitious musical exploration.


Please note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
Sonata no. 2 for Violin and Piano in D Minor Op. 121 Ziemlich langsam Lebhaft
Sonata no. 2 for Violin and Piano in D Minor Op. 121 Sehr lebhaft
Sonata no. 2 for Violin and Piano in D Minor Op. 121 Leise, einfach
Sonata no. 2 for Violin and Piano in D Minor Op. 121 Bewegt
Sonata in E-Flat Major Op. 18 Allegro ma non troppo
Sonata in E-Flat Major Op. 18 Improvisation, Andante cantabile
Sonata in E-Flat Major Op. 18 Finale: Andante Allegro

Total time: 01:03:02

Additional information





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Original Recording Format


Daan van Aalst

Recording Engineer

Daan van Aalst

Recording location

Westvest, Schiedam Holland

Recording Software


Recording Type & Bit Rate


Release DateOctober 2, 2015

Press reviews

Positive Feedback

This album is a pleasure sonically. And, importantly, the music for violin and piano by Robert Schumann and Richard Strauss is a joy to hear. Inui and Varvaresos play intelligently and with excellent intonation, each providing great support to and consideration of the other.

Performed are two monumental sonatas for violin and piano: Schumann’s Sonata no. 2 for Violin and Piano in D Minor Op. 121; and Strauss’ Sonata in E-Flat Major Op. 18. Both are significant works of the literature. Each is from musical giant of different generations at each end of the Romantic period. And both get their proper due from these two performers.

In all, an album which I have very much enjoyed! Particularly given the programming of these two great works back-to-back.

Romantiek van Vassilis Varvaresos en Noé Inui 5 out of 5

The First and the Last Romantic heet de debuut-cd van het duo Vassilis Varvaresos en Noé Inui, twee jonge muzikanten met Griekse wortels en een inmiddels internationale carrière. Er valt over te twisten of Schumann nou echt de eerste romanticus was, maar Richard Strauss was echt wel de laatste.

Zijn vioolsonate is een relatief vroeg werk, maar de flamboyante Strauss is er al volledig. Schumanns sonate hoort tot zijn beste stukken – doortimmerd en toch sensitief. De uitvoeringen zijn van de bovenste plank. Het samenspel tussen de twee musici is subliem en ze weten de klank zo te kleuren dat piano- en viooltonen soms nauwelijks merkbaar in elkaar overgaan.


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