Grieg: Violin Sonatas – No 1 in F major, Op 8; No 2 in G major, Op 13; No 3 in C minor, Op 45

Reviewed on Tue 01 Dec, 2015

Melodic generosity, vibrant characterisation and fiery scintillation vie for attention, often in restless changes of mood, something that Pietsch and Eisinger are alive to, and in vivid fashion.

Each of Edvard Grieg’s sonatas for violin and piano is a three-movement affair, lyrical, folksy and impassioned. Such qualities, and contrasts, are to the fore in the opening movement of the First Sonata, which introduces Franziska Pietsch as a voluble violinist, projecting confidently or being an intimate confidante, supported gamely by Detlev Eisinger as a thoughtful accompanist who can also be as demonstrative as her, and captured in a recording that recognises the duo nature of these works. Melodic generosity, vibrant characterisation and fiery scintillation vie for attention, often in restless changes of mood, something that Pietsch and Eisinger are alive to, and in vivid fashion. Grieg goes with his heart and these musicians follow suit, ensuring that the composer’s individuality is brought out. There is much to captivate and excite, and the deal we are given in the C minor Third Sonata is a dramatic one, story-telling at its best.
–Colin Anderson