Hagai Shaham (violin), Arnon Erez (piano)
These generously filled CDs present sparkling performaces of Hubay’s epic Scènes de la csárda alongside his two sets of Poèmes hongrois and provide their first complete recording.
The Scènes are in the tradition of Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies, Brahms’s Hungarian Dances and Sarate’s Zigeunerweisen, and reflect the nineteenth century’s fondness for romanticized gypsy music as a worthy source of entertainment in middle-class salons and at aristocratic balls. Written over a period of some forty years, these fourteen perfectly crafted showpieces are dedicated individually to many of the period’s most influential figures, several famous violin virtuosi among them. Passionate melodies and furious violinistic pyrotechnics combine to make this set into a classic of the genre.
Hubay’s two sets of Poèmes hongrois, written in 1885 and 1899 respectively, take further folk-like melodies and transform them into highly elaborate miniatures every bit as worthy of exploration as their more glamorous cousins, the Scènes.
A comprehensive booklet includes music examples illustrating each of the innumerable melodies used by Hubay.