Firma Melodiya presents another album dedicated to one of the greatest violinists of the 20th century, Leonid Kogan.
An unusual pairing of recordings realized in the late 1960s and early 1970s makes this release particularly attractive. Two concertos by J S Bach, a composer whose music played a significant part in the violinist’s repertoire (the concerto for two violins and orchestra was recorded together with Pavel Kogan, Leonid’s son and a talented violinist ad conductor), are here along with a piece from a different era.
The violin concerto by Alban Berg, a representative of the Second Viennese School, is one of the best creations of the composer of Wozzeck. The concerto, which became the composer’s last work, was dedicated “To the memory of an angel” (Alma Mahler’s daughter who died at an early age), combined the expression of the musical language with poignant lyrical parts and ended in the sounds of Bach’s chorale.
Leonid Kogan was the only performer of Berg’s concerto in the former USSR. The complexity of the piece was an obstacle for many celebrated violinists. His interpretation still captivates with its emotional expressiveness and in-depth comprehension of the concept and form of the concerto.