Huberman Festival 1982: Bach, Vivaldi, Mozart - DG 2741 026 (2LP set)
Jacket NM- / LPs NM
This outstanding 2LP set from Deutsche Grammophon (2741 026, German pressing, white circle labels, DDD stereo, total playing time 43:19) features a wonderful meeting of six great violin virtuosi in a superbly realized account of Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, taped 'live' at Frederic Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv during the 1982 Huberman Festival.
Also included are magnificent renditions of Bach's Concerto for Two Violins in D minor BWV 1043 (Stern & Mintz), Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante in E-flat Major K. 364 (Perlman & Zukerman), and Vivaldi's Concerto for Four Violins Op. 3 No. 10 (RV 580) (Stern, Gitlis, Haendel & Mintz).
An ingenious bit of concert-making, each of Vivaldi's Four Seasons was played by a different artist: Isaac Stern the soloist in Spring, Pinchas Zukerman in Summer, Shlomo MIntz in Autumn, and Itzakh Perlman in Winter. The Israel Philharmonic, under the direction of Zubin Mehta, provided sterling accompaniment throughout.
For this listener at least, it is Stern who proves the most characterful soloist, besting his younger colleagues in flair and imagination – when will this great violinist be given his full due and be regarded by collectors with the same enthusiasm they show OIstrakh, Kogan, Heifetz, et al.
In any case, the 1982 Huberman Festival must have been a very special occasion – it was during this concert series that Perlman, Zuckerman, and Mehta recorded their remarkable reading of Mozart's Siinfonia Concertante in E-flat Major K. 364, a long-standing 'Rosette' winner in The Penguin Guide. This Vivaldi Four Seasons proves equally inspired.
The sound is superb from first bar to last (producer: Dr. Steven Paul / recording supervisor: Hans Weber / balance engineer: Klaus Scheibe). This is a tremendous success of a disc in every way.