A captivating whimsical Gade

It may not be ground-breaking, but violinist Hasse Borup and Heather Conner on piano capture Gibe's whimsy and charm on this pleasant record

Composer: Gade
Repertoire: Violin Sonatas
Artists: Hasse Borup (violin), Heather Conner (piano)
Rating: 3.5/5
Genre: Instrumental
Label: Naxos 8.570524

Niels Gade was the most important Danish musician of the 19th century. He was not only a gifted composer, but also a virtuoso organist, violinist and conductor, who succeeded Mendelssohn as music director of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra. The three violin sonatas provide an illuminating cross-section of Gade’s career, from the Beethoven-cum-Mendelssohn First Sonata of 1842 to the Straussian pre-echoes of the Third Sonata (1885). Borup and Conner capture the gentle whimsy and charm of much of this music to captivating effect, although in the last resort there is little that one would describe as truly memorable.