LABELS: Decca Double Decca
WORKS: Violin Sonata in D, D384; Violin Sonata in G minor, D408; Violin Sonata in A minor, D385; Violin Sonata in A, D574; Fantasy in C, D934; Arpeggione Sonata, D821
PERFORMER: Szymon Goldberg (violin), Maurice Gendron (cello), Radu Lupu, Jean Françaix (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: 466 748-2 ADD/DDD mono/stereo Reissue (1954, 1980)
Like so many Schubert works of 1816, the three delightful Violin Sonatas in D, A minor and G minor are saturated with the spirit of Mozart, often to the point of virtual quotation. They and the more familiar A major Sonata of 1817 receive gracious, Classical readings here, even though Goldberg, with his slightly wiry tone, does not always sing with ideal eloquence. If one or two movements, including the potentially fiery opening Allegro of the G minor, are dangerously ruminative, the finale of the D major has an elegant lilt and the Scherzo of the A major, with its teasing rhythms, is vividly pointed.
On the second disc the late C major Fantasy – one of Schubert’s rare display pieces – is notable more for the allure and poetry of Lupu’s playing than for Goldberg’s neat but slightly inhibited contribution. In the Arpeggione Sonata, Maurice Gendron’s aristocratic tone and phrasing transcend the constricted 1952 mono sound. In sum, a worthwhile compilation, though if you just want the three 1816 sonatas there’s a rather livelier version, with sweeter violin tone, from Angèle Dubeau and Anton Kuerti. Richard Wigmore