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photos by Melanie Winning
 

 

     
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LINK to Tasmin's website
 

Tasmin's introduction for the
'Partners in Time' CD
 
There is a nice e-card on the NAXOS site for this CD ! You could send the link to friends!
 
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Introduction to 'Partners in Time'
Introduction ..((...read & play)

Hello and welcome to my website!  Some of you who are listening to this will have downloaded my free recital The Naked Violin and I'm delighted to introduce you to the next part of my project, entitled 'Partners in Time'. If you already know which works you would like to hear my introductions to, please click directly on the composer to hear the introductions and musical illustrations. For those of you who are new to these pieces, I'll give you a brief introduction now, then please listen to the overview that follows and after that you can choose the pieces that interest you most.
 
My idea for 'Partners in Time' was to develop the concept I began with the Naked Violin, where you can hear a violin programme with a variety of works of completely different styles, rather than a single style or works entirely by the same composer. 'Partners in Time'
explores a range of music spanning two hundred years, from a sonata written by Bach in the early 18th century to a set of folk dances excitingly arranged by Bartok in the early 20th century. The title 'Partners in Time' refers to the chronology of the development of the relationship between Violin and Piano, and in this disc you will have a chance to hear how different composers responded to the two instruments and the way in which they chose to represent the violin and piano, highlighting their similarities as well as their immense differences!
 
'Partners in Time' also refers to the fact that musicians who play this kind of intimate music need to have an innate understanding of each other's musical personality - a rapport, if you like - as well as a sense of adventure and a freshness that all exciting music needs! John Lenehan and I have worked together for many years and we really enjoyed creating this disc - in many cases, we spontaneously explored entirely different ways of playing the pieces which I hope has led to a feeling of a live performance. Finally 'Partners in Time' is also a "Perfect recital programme" and is one which I have chosen for many of my upcoming concerts.
 
As with the Naked Violin, I have made this recording using the two violins that I most frequently play in concert - my own 1757 Guadagnini and the "Regent" Stradivarius of 1708.  If you would like to know more about these instruments, please visit my Naked Violin page and click on the spoken introduction "Which Violin?"
 
A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF THE WORKS

John and I begin our recital with a great showstopping piece - Praeludium and Allegro - written by the legendary violinist and composer, Fritz Kreisler.  It's passionate, exciting and full of bravura - if you are new to the classical violin and piano, and enjoy the buzz of whirlwind activity, you will enjoy the Kreisler immensely.  It lasts just over five minutes and builds up to a very exciting conclusion.
 
The Bach is very contrasted and begins in a far more serene style. The opening is peaceful, the second movement is upbeat, the third is haunting and melodious and the last is great fun.   If you enjoyed my Bach on the Naked Violin, then this piece for violin and keyboard will most likely be something you will also appreciate.
 
Next comes the Mozart sonata, which is a very bright and bubbly work in three movements. The slow movement has a beautiful theme played on the piano and, in fact, as Mozart was a great pianist, it's easy to see why he features the piano so strongly in the whole work.  Mozart is often appreciated by people as the perfect composer from the classical era - a child prodigy himself, many young people enjoy Mozart's music for its freshness and openness.
 
However, some people find his music too harmonically "straight" and lacking in romantic passion, so if you listen to the musical examples and it's not for you, try the next piece instead, Grieg's sonata in G major.  Grieg's music is very different indeed from both the Bach and the Mozart - written over a hundred years later, classical music had by this time developed enormously in many ways.  Apart from the introduction, the sonata is very exuberant and even the melancholy middle movement has great bravura.
 
Tchaikovsky is a composer known to many people for his extravagant and over-the-top orchestral works, such as the famous 1812 overture complete with canon effects!  However, this next piece shows Tchaikovsky's more intimate side and is a beautifully simple and heartfelt melodic outpouring, called simply Melodie.
 
I wanted to end my recital with a set of dances by Bartok which show many sides to the violin. Each one has a different "trick" if you like and they pack a lot into a mere 6 minutes or so!  Watch out for number 3 which consists entirely  of a violinistic tool called harmonics - a wonderful effect which makes the violin sound like a pan-pipe or piccolo!  And for sheer testosterone, check out the last two dances - it's all over in just about a minute, but what a ride!

Tasmin has been receiving excellent reviews for her new disc
"Partners in Time" - please click on this LINK to view them. (1.7Mb)

There are two further reviews that have come in from French magazine DIAPASON and THE STRAD. Read them here. (280kb)