Trésors Ensevelis, Hidden Treasures
I am fortunate to spend much of my working life in Walt Disney Concert Hall, where I serve as Principal Concertmaster for the Los Angeles Philharmonic. It was a treat for me to record this album in our auditorium, one of the modern world’s acoustic treasures.
Many violinists, myself included, perform the Poulenc sonata forviolin. However I have long wanted to introduce the magnificent Poulenc Flute Sonata into the string repertoire. The idea first came to me when I heard the slow movement in concert and imagined the violin being able to slide and have a gutsier sound in the lower register. In my arrangement of the sonata I add double stops, pizzicati, and transpositions to lower registers in areas where the flute has less power than a bowed instrument. In the Cantilena I take it further and tune the violin’s G string a half step lower, giving the violin a deeper resonance throughout the key of B-Flat Minor.
Within the first few bars of Chalifour’s violin transcription of Poulenc’s flute sonata performed on a 1716 Stradivarius once owned by Nathan Milstein, you’ll know you’re in one of the world’s finest sounding concert halls. Both Mr. Chalifour’s violin and Joanne Pearce Martin’s piano come through with uncanny timbral accuracy, textural clarity and three-dimensional focus and palpability. The presence of a large, open, delicately reverberant space behind the musicians can be both heard and felt on this acoustically transparent recording.
Michael Fremer, Stereophile and musicangle.com