This disc contains some of Szymanowski’s most overtly sensual and vividly gestural music; his lush, exotic textures intensified and crystallized in miniature.
From the early Violin Sonata in D minor onwards, evidence of the composer’s unusual brilliance in writing for solo violin is paramount. The Romance in D major Op 23 (1910), first performed in Warsaw in April 1913, already reveals a considerable advance towards the exotic, strangely inward exaltation of mature works. In the extraordinary Mythes (1915) Szymanowski reaches the zenith of his artistry, creating ‘a new mode of expression for the violin’ and through this an intoxicating, other-wordly musical language.
This recording features the wonderful young violinist Alina Ibragimova, who appears on her third Hyperion disc. Her growing catalogue is receiving the highest critical acclaim. Accompanying her is an equally youthful yet highly distinguished performer, the French pianist Cédric Tiberghien.
"We are living in a Second Golden Age of violinists, but even in the context of Hilary Hahn, Leila Josefowitz and Julia Fischer, Alina Ibragimova is an astonishing talent … technically the playing is superb. Intonation is exceptional, and Ibragimova’s timbral range—from the coarse to the silken, from the richly throbbing to the chastely disembodied—seems unlimited. The music is studded with challenges … she tosses it all off with self-confident authority … this is a major release." (International Record Review)