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Nostalgic Russia. Musique russe pour violon. Udagawa, Limonov.
Format : 1 CD
Total Time : 01:12:20

Recording : 01/11/2020
Country : Russie
Sound : Stereo

Label : Northern Flowers
Catalog No. : NFPMA99145
EAN : 5055354481451
Price Code : DM016A

Publishing Year : 2021
Release Date : 09/06/2021

Genre : Classical
Piotr Ilyitch Tchaikovski (1840-1893)
Romance, op. 5 (trans. V. Mikhailovsky)
Valse Sentimentale, op. 51 n° 6

Eduard Nápravník (1839-1916)
Quatre Pièces, op. 64
Nocturne
Valse-Caprice
Mélodie russe
Scherzo espagnol

Sergei Rachmaninov (1873-1943)
Elégie, op. 3 n° 1 (trans. V. Mikhailovsky)

Igor Stravinski (1882-1971)
Chanson Russe

Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov (1844-1908)
Hymne au Soleil, extrait de "Le Coq d'Or" (trans. J. Heifetz)

Anton Stepanovitch Arenski (1861-1906)
Tempo di Valse (trans. J. Heifetz)
Sérénade, op. 30 n° 2

Alexandre Scriabine (1872-1915)
Nocturne, op. 5 n° 1 (trans. A. Mogilevsky)

Dimitri Chostakovitch (1906-1975)
Trois Danses fantastiques, op. 5 (trans. D. Tsyganov)
Extrait de "Cinq Préludes", op. 34 (trans. D. Tsyganov)
n° 2
n° 5
n° 11
n° 17
n° 18

Dimitri Kabalevski (1904-1987)
Improvisation, op. 21 n° 1
Rondo, op. 69

Hideko Udagawa, violon
Petr Limonov, piano

L’art de la miniature fut bien représenté entre la seconde moitié du 19e siècle et la première moitié du siècle suivant. Des pièces brèves concernèrent aussi bien les répertoires du piano que du violoncelle et plus encore du violon accompagné. Il s’agissait de morceaux dits “de salon” qui firent les beaux jours de la bourgeoisie et de la noblesse russe. Les romances, valses sentimentales, sérénades et nocturnes réunis évoquent avec… nostalgie, un certain art de vivre où la beauté des mélodies croisait parfois une virtuosité débonnaire. Tchaikovski fut un maître du genre et on salue les deux interprètes qui jouent ces partitions avec la simplicité qui leur convient. On est surpris d’entendre des arrangements, en première mondiale, de la Romance de Tchaikovski et l’Elégie de Rachmaninov. Ces deux versions ont été réalisées par Mikhailovsky. Elles rejoignent les transcriptions de Kreisler pour l’Hymne au soleil de Rimski-Korsakov, d’Heifetz pour le Tempo di Valse d’Arenski, de Tsyganov pour quelques Préludes et Danses fantastiques de Chostakovitch. Hideko Udagawa et Petr Limovov jouent ces pages avec une certaine nonchalance, n’appuyant jamais les mélodies, préservant le parfum de cette « Nostalgic Russia ». (Jean Dandrésy)

Russia’s great tradition of violin playing inspired countless composers to create soulful melodies and dazzling showpieces. Hideko Udagawa’s latest album, set for release by Russian label Northern Flowers on 9 April 2021, began with a quest to find fine repertoire rarities and works written to display the violin’s abilities. Nostalgic Russia also includes world premiere recordings of Viktor Mikhailovsky’s transcriptions for violin and piano of Rachmaninov’s Elégie Op.3 No.1 and Tchaikovsky’s Romance Op.5, and contains only the second ever recording of Four Pieces Op.64 by Czech composer Eduard Francevic Nápravník, principal conductor at the Imperial Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg and an important early interpreter of Tchaikovsky’s music. The London-based violinist’s compelling programme mirrors her long association with Russian music and love for the country’s culture. It spans everything from Dmitri Kabalevsky’s haunting Improvisation Op.21 No.1 and Fritz Kreisler’s transcription of the ‘Hymn to the Sun’ from Rimsky-Korsakov’s opera The Golden Cockerel to Stravinsky’s Chanson russe and characterful transcriptions of five pieces from Shostakovich’s Preludes for piano Op.34. Other highlights include Valse sentimentale from Tchaikovsky’s Six Pieces Op.51 and a transcription of Scriabin’s sublime Nocturne Op.5 No.1. The album was recorded last November at the Church of St Silas the Martyr in north London in company with the Russian pianist Petr Limonov, an alumnus of Moscow’s Central Music School and London’s Royal College of Music. “This recording has been a joy to make,” comments Hideko Udagawa. “It takes an enormous amount of time to discover and learn suitable pieces for a recital album of this kind. You have to judge whether a little-known work is good enough to record or is little-known for a reason, and you must also decide what you’d like to have transcribed. Building this programme took many months and was fascinating in itself. It’s a long process but worth it. Even getting the scores is not always easy. Many of the pieces I tried were substandard, including works by well-known composers. So it takes time and effort to discover the best repertoire and then to learn it. I was lucky in the past to find a Khachaturian sonata that had never been recorded, and fortunate once again to find so many fascinating pieces for this new album.” Udagawa drew from experience gained while creating the programme of her first album for the St Petersburgbased Northern Flowers label, a disc of romantic works by Glinka (including the world premiere of the Sonata for Violin and Piano), Glazunov, Glière, Anton Rubinstein and others. She began by trawling the catalogues of libraries and archives in the United States and Europe, then requested help from publishers and spent hours online to amass a pile of potential pieces. The violinist was determined that whatever she chose to record, whether originally written for her instrument or transcribed for it, should be of the highest quality. Rachmaninov’s Elégie and Tchaikovsky’s Romance, both conceived for solo piano, comfortably passed Udagawa’s quality threshold and enabled her to continue an already fruitful collaboration with Viktor Mikhailovsky. Lessons learned from Nathan Milstein proved the strongest influence on Hideko Udagawa’s choice of compositions and performance of them. She began studying with the great Russian-born violinist in her early twenties and was taught and encouraged by him for a decade before his death in 1992. In addition to the myriad of details passed on by master to pupil, Milstein always emphasised the three Ts: tone, taste and technique. “His example had a very big and lasting effect. Of course to be close to such a big personality at an early age had an enormous and profound influence on me. He was very strict with himself and insisted that it was the only way to be a good player, assuming you had a certain amount of talent to start with. Milstein had aristocratic taste and everybody still admires him for that.” The Russian romantic violin tradition, observes Hideko Udagawa, was always alive to a player’s individuality and emotional response to the music. Yet it also perpetuated certain signature gestures and ways of expression. “I’m very careful not to play in the old style, with too much portamenti and so on, because we live in modern times,” she reflects. “But there are still things I do that feel right even though they’re very different from what you will hear from the younger generation of violinists today. I feel it’s a great honour when anyone tells me they can hear Milstein’s influence in my playing. Those influences and the memories I have of him are part of who I am as a performer and, I hope, are at the heart of this new album.”

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