Bruch’s Violin Concerto has often been considered the richest and most seductive of the famous German violin concertos written along with those of Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Brahms. Capturing a heartfelt romantic allure with its lush and memorable themes, excellent solo writing and impeccable pacing, it remains a favourite with soloists and audiences alike. Bruch’s greatest gift was for writing haunting, deeply expressive melodies, and here he makes the gorgeous adagio the centerpiece of the work.
Remaining incredibly fresh and abounding with memorable melodies, the Ninth Symphony describes Dvořák’s own spiritual and emotional journey from his intense longing for his beloved Bohemia to the thrill of the “New World” and its varied peoples. Its premiere in New York was a huge success and proclaimed in the US as “the greatest symphonic work ever composed in this country.”
In Brahms’ symphonic study, the St. Anthony Chorale theme is boldly introduced by the oboe and wind and is similar to Haydn’s own orchestration. The eight variations stay surprisingly close to the original theme, but cover a wide range of moods and expression, creating an imaginative work rich in contrasts.