Mendelssohn, F :: Concerto in E minor, op. 64 bis

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  • Composer
    Mendelssohn, F
  • Instrumentation
    Flute & Piano
  • Publisher
    International Music Company (IMC) []
  • Editor
    Rampal, Jean-Pierre
  • Orchestration
    fl, pn
  • Includes CD
    No
  • Classification
    Not Applicable
  • Genre
    Undefined
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Concerto in E minor, op. 64 bis
Mendelssohn, F

International Music Company presents Felix Mendelssohn's 'Concerto in E minor, op. 64 bis' (originally for violin and orchestra) transcribed for flute and piano by Jean-Pierre Rampal.

'Felix Mendelssohn s Violin Concerto in E minor is often treated as if it were his only violin concerto, despite the rediscovery in 1950 of another, in D minor, which he appears to have composed between the ages of 12 and 14. Although Yehudi Menuhin and others have recorded compelling interpretations of the earlier concerto, it s Mendelssohn s last major orchestral work, the Violin Concerto in E minor, op. 64, that everyone remembers. The concerto had a long gestation. It almost certainly wouldn t exist, at least not in its current form, without the diligent participation of its dedicatee, the soloist at the premiere and Mendelssohn s friend since adolescence: Ferdinand David. Shortly after accepting the position of music director of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra in 1835, Mendelssohn appointed David concertmaster. A few years later, when the composer began thinking about writing a new violin concerto, he turned to his old friend for advice. On July 30, 1838, Mendelssohn wrote to David: 'I should like to write a violin concerto for you next winter. One in E minor runs through my head, the beginning of which gives me no peace.' Together, the two men hashed out the work, mostly by correspondence, over the next six years. Mendelssohn was 29 years old when he began the concerto and 35 when he signed the autographed score, dated September 16, 1844. His correspondence shows that he kept soliciting David s input until the premiere, which took place on March 13, 1845. David was the soloist for the first performance, but Mendelssohn was too ill to lead the orchestra. He conducted the concerto for the first time later that year, with David again as soloist. Since its premiere, op. 64 has been a rite of passage for violin virtuosos. In the right hands, its Bachian rigor and Romantic lyricism make for a gripping interpretation. Mendelssohn s melodies are so seductive, his orchestrations so sumptuous, that it s easy to forget how unconventional the concerto must have sounded when it was new. Instead of the standard orchestral introduction, Mendelssohn starts the solo violin singing right away the same obsessive melody that he mentioned in his letter to David. This enigmatic theme blossoms into an ardent rhapsody, a reminder that the opening movement s tempo marking is Allegro molto appassionata.'

- Rene Spencer Saller, 2018

  • Composer
    Mendelssohn, F
  • Instrumentation
    Flute & Piano
  • Publisher
    International Music Company (IMC) []
  • Editor
    Rampal, Jean-Pierre
  • Orchestration
    fl, pn
  • Includes CD
    No
  • Classification
    Not Applicable
  • Genre
    Undefined
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