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Three Centuries of Russian Viola Sonatas (24/96 FLAC)

Three Centuries of Russian Viola Sonatas (24/96 FLAC)

Three Centuries of Russian Viola Sonatas (24/96 FLAC)

Composer: Revol Bunin, Mikhail Glinka, Vissarion Shebalin, Ivan Sokolov
Performer: Basil Vendryes, William David
Format: FLAC (tracks)
Label: Toccata
Catalogue: TOCN0014
Release: 2021
Size: 1.11 GB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

Glinka: Viola Sonata in D minor
01. I. Allegro moderato
02. II. Larghetto, ma non troppo

Bunin: Viola Sonata in D minor, Op. 26
03. I. Allegro appassionato
04. II. Andantino semplice
05. III. Sostenuto – Allegro spirituoso

Sokolov: Viola Sonata
06. I. Allegro moderato
07. II. Andante
08. III. Allegro
09. IV. A tempo (Lugubre)

Shebalin: Viola Sonata, Op. 51 No. 2
10. I. Con libertà – Allegro
11. II. Andante con moto
12. III. Allegro assai

The Russian viola sonata is a rare bird, not least because the instrument itself was frowned upon by the Soviet authorities; as a result Russian music for the viola has a rather patchy history. It begins in earnest in 1931, when the 1825 Sonata by Mikhail Glinka, “the father of Russian music”, was reconstructed from his sketches by Vadim Borisovsky, “the father of the Russian viola”. Thereafter, musicians and composers worked together to expand the repertoire. The relationship between the composer Revol Bunin and the violist Rudolf Barshai resulted in a sonata of 1955 which deserves wider currency. Although half a century apart, the Shebalin and Sokolov sonatas have something unusual in common: both were created as part of a triptych, alongside sonatas for violin and cello. All four composers knew how to make the viola sing – though this lyricism is often animated by moments of drama and excitement.

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