Grumaiux: Violin Concerti by Paganini (#4) & Saint-Saëns (#3) - Philips 836.931 DSY
Jacket GOOD- / LP NM
This fine LP from Philips (836.931 DSY, French pressing, “Plaisir du Classique” series,) features legendary violinist Arthur Grumiaux in a pair of brilliant concerto performances.
Side 1 features Grumiaux's stunning account of Niccolo Paganini's Violin Concerto No. 4 in D minor, recorded in Paris in November 1954 with conductor Franco Gallini and the Orchestra des Concerts Lamoureux. In this recording, Grumiaux plays the 1715 'Titian' Stradivarius, and this account with Gallini was set down a few days after the original Second Paris Premiere, which occurred on Sunday, 7 November, 1954 at the Salle Pleyel, Paris. Grumiaux is both firebrand and poet here.
Side 2 features Grumiaux’s equally charismatic performance of Camille Saint-Saëns’ Violin Concerto No. 3 in B minor Op. 61, made with conductor Jean Fournet and l'Orchestre des Concerts Lamoureux at the Salle Apollo, Paris, during 21-23 June 1954.
Wrote esteemed critic Rob Cowan in the November 2003 issue of The Gramophone:
"I was once told on good authority that Heifetz was a keen admirer of Grumiaux’s art, and little wonder. Like Heifetz, Grumiaux was a master of subtle shading, a disciplined stylist with a warm heart whose immaculate musicianship, silken tone and innate composure benefitted everything he played."
In addition to a listing of other titles in Philips’ “Plaisir du Classique” line, a series supervised by the eminent French critic Bernard Gavoty, there are brief liner notes by Natalie Gallini, Franco Gallini, and Jose Bruyr. The striking cover design was executed by Hudelot.