Igor Stravinsky, Bartók & Martinů

Frank Peter Zimmermann, violin

Bamberger Symphoniker
Jakub Hrůša, conductor

BIS / 2024

Stravinsky, Bartók and Martinů were established international figures when they wrote these works for violin, travelling across Europe as well as the United States. With the onset of World War Two, all three composers would ultimately emigrate because of their rejection of fascism. In an age of political upheaval and cultural displacement, each of them found an individual approach to reinventing the language of tonal music, laying down roots in the west without abandoning their Eastern European identities. While the Russian-born Stravinsky was experimenting with possibilities of modern violin technique in his concerto, Martinů took these efforts a step further in his Suite concertante by blending the sounds of his native Bohemia with the colours of French neo-classicism. In the Rhapsodies, Bartók turned to the folk music of Hungary and Romania. Frank Peter Zimmermann, joined here by the Bamberger Symphoniker and its conductor Jakub Hrůša, continues his exploration of the great violin works of the 20th century after his acclaimed recordings of works by Hindemith (BIS-2024), Shostakovich (BIS-2247) as well as Martinů and Bartók (BIS-2457), a recording unanimously acclaimed by the critics, gaining a Diapason d’or and named ‘Concerto Choice’ by BBC Music Magazine, ‘Editor’s Choice’ by Gramophone and one of Classica’s ‘Chocs de l’année’.

With Jakub Hrůša and his super-attentive Bamberg orchestra, Frank Peter Zimmermann trumps the self-confident projection of his younger self…Stravinsky’s framing movements seem defter now, particularly the opening Toccata with its chortling bassoons.