PAUL VIARDOT (1847-1921): Violin Sonatas No. 1 in G, Op. 5, No. 2 in B Flat and No. 3 in A Minor, PAULINE VIARDOT (1821-1910): Sonatina in A Minor (all World Premiere Recordings).
Catalogue Number: 07T005
Description: Pauline’s son turns out to be a very happy discovery indeed. A violinist who was the dedicatee of Fauré’s first violin sonata, he also left behind a small trove of chamber works mostly featuring his own instrument and he turns out to be one of those gifted melodists whose tuneful motifs immediately stick in the ear. The sonatas date from 1883, 1902 and 1931 and seem to show a sunny optimist brimming with joie de vivre in No. 1, a mature fellow comfortable with himself and with life in No. 2, and then there’s No. 3. After a moderate tempo first movement we suddenly get titles affixed to the other three: “Contemplation”, “The Nasty Lame Woman” and “Sadness, Anger, Resignation”. OK, the guy was 74 and was looking backward and had become crotchety; these explain the first and last titles. But the other? How bizarre! By the way, it’s a limping scherzo... Reto Kuppel (violin), Wolfgang Manz (piano).