Performance Wednesday, January 21, 2015 | 7:30 PM

Kristóf Baráti

Weill Recital Hall
Bach wrote six works for unaccompanied violin, but the Partita No. 2 is especially memorable for its emotionally intense Chaconne movement. When Ysaÿe heard legendary Hungarian violinist Joseph Szigeti perform Bach’s sonatas, he was inspired to write his own. In his inventive A-Minor Sonata, he paraphrases Bach and also serves up a daring version of the Dies Irae, the Latin chant for the dead. Bartók’s sonata, the last work he completed before his death, was commissioned by the great violinist Yehudi Menuhin.

Part of Salon Encores.


  • Kristóf Baráti, Violin


  • YSAŸE Solo Violin Sonata in A Minor, Op. 27, No. 2
  • YSAŸE Solo Violin Sonata in D Minor, Op. 27, No. 3, "Ballade"
  • BACH Partita for Solo Violin No. 2 in D Minor
  • BARTÓK Solo Violin Sonata


Ysaÿe's Solo Violin Sonata in D Minor, Op. 27, No. 3, "Ballade"
Kristóf Baráti, Violin
Brilliant Classics

At a Glance

EUGÈNE YSAŸE  Solo Violin Sonata in A Minor, Op. 27, No. 2; Solo Violin Sonata in D Minor, Op. 27, No. 3, “Ballade”

Belgian violinist Eugène Ysaÿe was renowned for his purity of tone, liquid phrasing, and seemingly effortless virtuosity, which he displayed in a series of sonatas inspired by Bach’s solo violin works. Both the A-Minor Sonata, with its “obsessive” repetition of a seven-note motif drawn from the famous Dies Irae chant, and the lyrical but no less demanding “Ballade” Sonata fully exploit the violin’s technical and expressive resources.

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH  Partita for Solo Violin No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1004

A magisterial compendium of compositional styles and instrumental techniques, Bach’s six sonatas and partitas for unaccompanied violin have delighted listeners—and challenged performers—ever since their rediscovery in the mid-1800s. The three partitas share a standard layout, that of the Italian sonata da camera (“chamber sonata”), consisting of a series of stylized dance movements. Often played on its own, the Ciaccona of the D-Minor Partita is one of Bach’s grandest and most famous conceptions.

BÉLA BARTÓK  Solo Violin Sonata, BB 124

One of Bartók’s last works, the Solo Violin Sonata was commissioned by the young Yehudi Menuhin, who premiered it at Carnegie Hall in late 1944. Like Ysaÿe, Bartók took his cue from Bach’s sonatas and partitas in creating a richly expressive and grippingly virtuosic work that abounds in musical ideas.

Distinctive Debuts is supported, in part, by endowment gifts from The Lizabeth and Frank Newman Charitable Foundation and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
This performance is part of Distinctive Debuts.

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