Alina Ibragimova, Cedric Tiberghien: Beethoven - Violin Sonatas Vol. 3

Duo Ibragimova and Tiberghien are a fabulous partnership and this live performance positively fizzes with shared inspiration.

Composer: Beethoven
Repertoire:  Violin Sonatas, Vol.3: Sonatas No.6 in A, Op.30 No.1; No.3 in E flat, Op.12 No.3; ‘Kreutzer’, No.9 in a, Op.47
Artists: Alina Ibragimova (vln), Cedric Tiberghien (pf)
Rating:  4/5
Genre: Chamber
Label: Wigmore Hall Live WHLIVE0045

The Music: The third and last volume in a three-CD cycle. You might well come away from the first two works thinking that the ‘violin sonatas’ are actually piano concertos: the brilliance of the pianist’s task in the E flat sonata is hair-raising. The ‘Kreutzer’ Sonata, though, matches virtuosity for both instruments with philosophy and poetry in a veritable symphony for two instruments.

The Performance: Ibragimova and Tiberghien are a brilliant partnership and there are no problems with their gorgeous music-making. Well, only one problem, but it’s large: indeed, it’s nine foot long. Ibragimova plays the two earlier sonatas in carefully calibrated, Classical-era style with feather-delicate tone, which in itself is exquisite. But Tiberghien, though his touch is light and clear at all times, is playing the Wigmore’s modern concert grand. This mismatch creates a serious imbalance that annoyed me all the way through the first two works. in the ‘Kreutzer’ Sonata, Ibragimova allows herself to let rip and the balance improves, to splendid effect.

The Verdict: No doubt this disc will be as much loved as this splendid young duo’s first two, but i find the discrepancy of style versus instruments does disrupt the full enjoyment of the music.

Want More? You can get vols 1 and 2 respectively on WHLIVE0036 and WHLIVE0041