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Brahms: Violin Sonatas -- Anne-Sophie Mutter [DVD] [2010]

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: Classical, Colour, DVD-Video, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: German, French, Spanish, Cantonese Chinese
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Deutsche Grammophon
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Oct. 2010
  • Run Time: 109 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003OCM4AA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 135,510 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Virtuoso violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter plays Brahms's violin sonatas.

Brahms wrote his first violin sonata in 1853, when he was just 20. Although Brahms himself was critical of his sonatas, they have become extremely popular and are considered by many to be amongst the most intense, emotionally penetrating works composed for the violin. On this DVD recording, Grammy-winning violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter tackles the sonatas with pianist Lambert Orkis.

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Format: DVD
This audio visual recording by Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis complement their well-regarded and successful CD disc from 2010. Interestingly this disc is priced at about, or even below, the audio-only CD recording and is therefore a direct competitor on even those restricted grounds as, of course, there is always the option to listen without viewing. The sound can be enjoyed in surround format as well which is another reason to consider this rather than the audio only, stereo only CD.

As regards the current performances of these fairly late works by Brahms, it would seem fair to summarise them as being essentially very lyrical readings with an emphasis upon purity of tone. This never falters regardless of the pitch or tempo of the violin line. The violin tone is kept very clean without the heavier tonal characteristics that can sometimes be applied. The passionate side of the music is rather under-played on this occasion and which is appropriate given the autumnal nature of the works. Nevertheless there is quite sufficient passion and energy within the context of these interpretations which provide, balance and beauty within an overall restrained context.

By way of some comparative explanation of the above, these performances are far more clean-lined and purer-toned than the more heavily impassioned approach of a David Oistrakh or Yehudi Menuhin from an earlier generation for instance. From more recent times Viktoria Mullova also sees these works as more dramatic and impassioned than Mutter but without the heaviness of tone of either Oistrakh or Menuhin. Krysia Osostowicz accompanied by Susan Tomes see these works as fleeter and still with the energy of youth which even an older composer would be able to recall when writing.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Anne-Sophie Mutter's violin playing is totally delightful. This a great and very moving performance. Don't miss the encore, you have to go to it specially
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars 8 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finest Brahms violin sonatas on DVD, without doubt 10 Jan. 2011
By Chhan Thuan Kiat - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Brahms violin sonatas are essential repertoire for any music collection and there have been many fine audio recordings over the years. For the more modern recordings, the Mutter/Weissenberg (1998) and the Perlman/Askhenazy are well worth considering. Perlman fiddles fabulously and in the showy D minor sonata is simply fantastic, though some chamber music purists may find his extroverted playing a bit over the top for the A major and the G major opuses. Older folk (like me) still hold with affection the magical collaborations of Oistrakh with Richter and Suk with Katchen though they do sound a little faded compared with the best of recent sound recordings.
This disc represents Ann-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis in what is without doubt their best collaboration to date, better even than their Mozart cycle. The audio DTS 5.1 is very good and captures the intimate acoustics of the smallish venue well, with the violin and piano in a natural balance ( the picture quality is first class too.) What of the performance?
The concert starts with the A major sonata and indeed this is the shortest and most accessible of the three, with an abundance of fetching melodies on the violin. This is a relaxed and sunny composition (Brahms must have had his best summer vacation that year!), and Mutter makes the most of its sprightly violin theme in the 1st movement and the graceful melody in the adagio 2nd., while Orkis has a simpler time. Next up is the G major opus 78, and here it is evident that the two soloists have given much thought to its interpretation and performance. The opening Vivace movement contains one of the loveliest of melodies and here Mutter waxes lyrical, making her violin sing its heart out, completely vindicating Brahms' genius in violin composition. My favourite movement of the whole set! The adagio is introverted, almost meditative, and the sparse piano accompaniment mainly on the bass notes accentuate the sombreness. The violin still holds centre stage but the sensitive pianism of Orkis enhances the sonata's quiet beauty. I find the atmosphere melancholic but not entirely forlorn for now and again bursts of more optimistic notes break through. I am reminded of sunbursts through gloomy overcast and sudden smiles in the midst of tears. The 3rd. movement, allegro, restores the equanimity somewhat. The mood is calm and serene and the sonata ends on a hushed but hopeful note. What an achingly beautiful piece of work the G major is. The D minor sonata is the last and what a showpiece for the violin this is. Mutter revels in the razzle-dazzle of it all, playing with great aplomb and virtuosity while now as the writing for the piano becomes more complex, Orkis rises to the challenge and the precision give and take is well nigh flawless, in the tradition of chamber music making at its best.
If you love Brahms or the violin or chamber music, you will get a real high from these splendid performances. There are some recordings one simply must have. This is one of them
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars sounds good, looks good but... 17 May 2011
By DWAinLA - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is basically a very nice dvd - high level musicians playing some of the greatest violin music ever, in good sound and well-filmed. My only complaint is that the producers have recorded the sound so we hear it from a far away vantage point, while seeing the concert from a front row seat. Having attended many small concerts like like before, it strikes me as an unnatural effect, and is somewhat disconcerting.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mutter playing Brahms 8 Mar. 2011
By WNL - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Mutter at her very best. she plays with such passion and expression, and Orkis is just as good. Mutter is, in my opinion, the very best Violinist in the world today, at least of the living ones that I have heard. I have played since I was six. Never in Her league. But still, I know the instrument and the music. Of violinists that I have listened to, only Fritz Kreisler, surpasses Anne-Sophie's playing. I also truly enjoy the DVD format. I doubt very seriously that I will ever have the oppertunity to see Anne-Sophie Mutter play live. And certainly not in the settings of her DVD performances. So it is a special treat. WNL
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally awesome music.. 21 Sept. 2010
By Alfred Rony Situmorang - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
Is this DVD still in pre-order status from amazon? I bought this DVD from a store called Duta Suara in Jakarta last week. Both of them are PERFECT couple of duet violin-piano setting. But Anna shows more mature and profound on her tone colors here in Brahms, rather than lighter sound on her Beethoven DVDs (also with Lambert Orkis at the piano). But most of all, Anna and Lambert do further more than just performing music, their music show beautiful dialogues between them.. All sonatas are played effortlessly, and for sure with supreme excellency in styles and forms, as Brahms' musical characters. And the sound of DG once again shows its best as usual. For comparison, I have ever heard old recording of David Oistrakh-Sviatoslav Richter playing some excerpts of these sonatas, but still Anna & Lambert surpasses them..Highly Recommended
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fine performances and recording combine to give great satisfaction 27 Aug. 2012
By I. Giles - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
This audio visual recording by Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis complement their well-regarded and successful CD disc from 2010. Interestingly this disc is priced at about, or even below, the audio-only CD recording and is therefore a direct competitor on even those restricted grounds as, of course, there is always the option to listen without viewing. The sound can be enjoyed in surround format as well which is another reason to consider this rather than the audio only, stereo only CD.

As regards the current performances of these fairly late works by Brahms, it would seem fair to summarise them as being essentially very lyrical readings with an emphasis upon purity of tone. This never falters regardless of the pitch or tempo of the violin line. The violin tone is kept very clean without the heavier tonal characteristics that can sometimes be applied. The passionate side of the music is rather under-played on this occasion and which is appropriate given the autumnal nature of the works. Nevertheless there is quite sufficient passion and energy within the context of these interpretations which provide, balance and beauty within an overall restrained context.

By way of some comparative explanation of the above, these performances are far more clean-lined and purer-toned than the more heavily impassioned approach of a David Oistrakh or Yehudi Menuhin from an earlier generation for instance. From more recent times Viktoria Mullova also sees these works as more dramatic and impassioned than Mutter but without the heaviness of tone of either Oistrakh or Menuhin. Krysia Osostowicz accompanied by Susan Tomes see these works as fleeter and still with the energy of youth which even an older composer would be able to recall when writing.

All of these performances offer the enthusiast deeply satisfying experiences which are equally but differently relevant. There is no fixed correct way to play these masterpieces and these varied responses only serve to make it clear that a range of recorded performances would be ideal for collectors. Within this wealth of talent and experience these performances by Mutter and Orkis take their rightful place as first among equals.

The recording offers sympathetic camera work and crisp imaging that is detailed without being invasive. The sound is excellent and is offered in DTS 5.0 and stereo formats.

The bonus material is in the form of a recorded conversation between Mutter and Orkis as well as Mutter giving her thoughts on the sonatas. All of this is interesting but not the prime reason for purchasing the disc.

I would suggest that this disc offers fine performances illustrating a purity of vision within a fairly restrained emotional context. In its way this is as satisfying as other leading interpretations and should give a great deal of satisfaction to a great number of purchasers.
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