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on 22 December 2009
There has been controversy about the cadenzas used in this recording- they are the cadenzas from Beethoven's own piano arrangement of this concerto and, to accommodate the second line in the piano, Kopatchinskaia recorded both parts which have then been overdubbed and-although she could no doubt gone for the option of having the leader of the orchestra play one line ( this is an option in part of the Berg Concerto)- the recorded result is fresh, new and as invigorating as a cadenza should be, yet it still remains an arrangement of a score written by Beethoven. In a few places throughout the concerto the soloist has opted for Beethoven's own alterative notations found in the autograph.
The carefree, joyful nature of Kopachinskaia's performace makes this lively interpretation not rushed or light-weight but refreshingly young and new-minted.
Herreweghe and his period orchestra are first-rate and at one with the soloist
If you really must have heavy, intellectualize Beethoven this will not be for you, at least it won't be unless you are brave enough to listern and surprise yourself!
The two Romances and the fragment we have of the
early violin concerto in C woo 5 completes the disc.
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on 31 March 2010
Beethoven: Violin Concerto, Romances, Fragment Concerto
From the opening bars this version of the Violin Concerto announces that we are about to hear something quite different. The sheer verve of the opening sequence grips one's attention very firnly indeed, the technical mastery of her instrument distinguishes the soloist and the concerto continues quite unswervingly. Of particular interest is a portion which has never appeared in either of the two existing recordings in my collection and so the entire concerto absolutely commands your attention for fear of missing yet another nuance. A wonderful addition to any classical collection and certainly not a "duplicate".
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on 9 July 2012
This performance of the Beethoven Violin Concerto uses period instruments. The tempi are somewhat faster, but not excessively so in my opinion, than many recorded performances. If this has put you off, then don't bother reading any more, as I suspect this recording is unlikely to be your cup of tea.

If however you are still with me, then you need to know two more things. I found the performance as a whole is a real revelation - it has a much lighter touch (think Norrington or Gardener in comparison with Klemperer) than many. If this appeals then I suspect you will enjoy most of the performance.

The cadenzas used are not the Kreisler ones we are used to, but ones that the soloist Patricia Kopatchinskaja has adapted from Beethoven's cadenzas he wrote for the arrangement for piano and orchestra. They really take a bit of getting used to. Initially I found it hard to accept them, but they are starting to grow on me. However I suspect that some may find they take the edge off what otherwise is a very wonderful performance of the concerto.

The soloist has something to say with each and every note (something that cannot be said about any other performance I've heard). Some will, I suspect, think of her as someone out to make a point by being different. She is certainly NOT a Moldavian Nigel Kennedy. It is all done with great taste. If it were not for the cadenzas I would have no hesitation in enthusiastically praising the performance which certainly grips my attention far more than any other in my collection (Kreisler x 2, Menuhin, and Perlman). I keep playing it at every opportunity.

The violin is recorded very slightly forward of the orchestra, and overall the violin and orchestra are in a bright acoustic, making them sound bigger than perhaps they really are. This works for me with small forces, but some may find the acoustic just a shade too bright. There is some 'heavy breathing' from soloist or conductor audible in several places - but no more than you might hear in a live performance.

The two romances follow in similar style, and can be recommended. The fragment is also worth hearing and enjoyable - but is not complete and not 'prime' Beethoven in my view - I personally wouldn't buy the CD for this alone.

I would recommend hearing before purchase.

5 stars for everything apart from the cadenzas which are growing on me the more I hear them.
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on 21 July 2016
Pat Kop(is how people refer to apparently I'm not being disrespectful) is simply stunning.
I bought her Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto no1, fell in love and have been getting all her previous recordings.
meet your next favourite female concert violinist.
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on 7 July 2010
Having very much enjoyed Janine Jansen's recording of the Beethoven concerto, I was looking forward to hearing another brilliant young violinist in the work. But I found, disappointingly, that I didn't particularly enjoy the performance. I was concerned, first, by the number of changes that had been made to the notes, especially in the first movement. I understand that Kopatchinskaja has gone back to Beethoven's autograph and has chosen to play passages that Beethoven later discarded - this means that some of my favourite passages have been considerably altered. The soloist plays with great freedom - the broken octaves at the first entry are held back and there is considerable rubato elsewhere. This freedom is used not for romantic expressive effect but more in the spirit of baroque fantasy. Although Kopatchinskaja uses vibrato in the first movement, she cuts it out almost entirely for the second movement. This seems an odd decision. After all, the conservative Leopold Mozart was advocating a modest use of vibrato in the 1750s and complaining about the trend towards more plentiful vibrato - so Beethoven would have expected vibrato by the time of the concerto. The soloist has chosen to use tone that is rather thin and wispy and has little warmth. The finale is played with great brilliance but, for me, scampers rather than dances. The accompaniment is fine - though ensemble is not great in the slow movement - but it doesn't have the vitality and individuality of the Bremen orchestra for Jansen. The controversial cadenza in the first movement - though obviously gimmicky - was great and I enjoyed this enormously. It's a shame it didn't have a track to itself! I was disappointed not to enjoy the overall performance more - perhaps baroque Beethoven will grow on me.
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on 7 October 2013
I havent had time to listen to it yet, but I'm sure its great.
Assumption based on PK's other recordings, notably with Fazil Say, & her Bartok/Ligeti pieces.
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on 21 November 2010
This is a compelling performance by a talented Violinist accompanied by an excellent orchestra. I am a great fan of music played on period instruments and enjoyed this work immensely. I am not sure that I prefer the overdubbed cadenza to the more usual style of performance. However, I have only listened to it a few times and it may grow on me! Time will tell.
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