Jascha Heifetz THE MASTER VIOLINIST

The majority of these performances will be very familiar to Heifetz collectors and so will the transfers. Discs one and two were remastered in 2006 whilst the bulk of the remaining pieces date to work carried out in 1992-93. The selection certainly meets with my approval ranging across the repertoire as it does and I particularly commend the selection of the smaller pieces which occupies discs five and six and the 1935 Bach recordings enshrined in disc four. The sole item from the 1920s is also here; the Menuet I and II from the Partita in E which was recorded on an early electric in 1925 in Camden, New Jersey.  
Heifetz had recorded the Sibelius with Stokowski at the end of 1934 but it remained unissued at the time and didn’t materialise until it was issued in the multi-volume set devoted to the ‘Philadelphia Orchestra Centennial Collection - Historic Broadcasts and Recordings 1917-1998.’ His first commercially issued recording was with Beecham and this justly famous traversal kicks off this set. I’d just note that its ethos is vividly at a remove from the performances of Anja Ignatius and Georg Kulenkampff to cite two near contemporaneous performances. The subtly sustained expressivity exemplified by Heifetz can be heard at full tilt here. For the Tchaikovsky and Glazunov Concertos he was partnered by Barbirolli, who had earlier recorded the Tchaikovsky with a very different Russian player, Mischa Elman. This represents probably Heifetz’s best playing in the Tchaikovsky – at thirty-six he was at his peak. The Glazunov is virile, taut, expressive, full of shading, very different from Milstein’s more aristocratic approach. On this evidence it’s a pity Barbirolli didn’t explore the Glazunov symphonies.
CD 1 - CD 2
CD 3 - CD 4
CD 5 - CD 6


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