Violinist Alina Ibragimova and pianist Cédric Tiberghien launch a planned series of three CDs of Beethoven sonatas with this release. They first played Beethoven together during their two years (2005-7) as BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists.
Autumn 2009 at Wigmore Hall brought the duo’s first complete cycle of Beethoven sonatas, comprising three concerts. These were preceded by a number of Beethoven performances around the country, all growing from a week’s residency at Aldeburgh, which brought intense rehearsal of the sonatas, “playing, talking, thinking, morning until evening, feeling the connections, the moods, the links between each sonata, each key,” explains Tiberghien. “To travel through all ten sonatas, to play them live, is really something that changes you, as a musician and also as a human being”.
For her part, Ibragimova feels that “the sonatas explore limitless possibilities of forms and emotions, which one is never tired of discovering, and the cycle remains one of the richest we have in music.”
The Observer review of their Wigmore Hall concert vividly evoked the players’ rapport:
“The phenomenal Ibragimova, who studied in the UK and plays in a period-instrument quartet, springs from a new tradition, one informed by fresh knowledge and scholarship. Playing a 1738 Pietro Guarneri of Venice violin, she makes a lithe, muscular sound, with fast, light bowing, limited vibrato and dexterous agility.
This suits the binary nature of Beethoven's sonatas, each instrument sharing a phrase, responding, accompanying in minutely charted balance. Tiberghien played out thunderously when the melodic line was his, but was alert to the dangers of covering Ibragimova's light sound, never overwhelming her.”
- Alina Ibragimovaviolin
- Cédric Tiberghienpiano