🔊 Ysaÿe: Sonata no.3 - Ballade
Performed by Clara-Jumi Kang @clarajumikang.
Clara currently performs on the ex-Strauss Stradivarius from 1708, generously loaned by the Samsung Cultural Foundation, Korea since 2015.
Her past instruments include the 1683 ex-Gingold Stradivarius (2010-2013), loaned by the Indianapolis Competition. It is now played on by Tessa Lark @tessalark.
She has also played on the c.1725 ex-Möller del Gesu (2013-2015) loaned by the Samsung Cultural Foundation, Korea. She is using this del Gesu in my previous post of her playing Sarasate's Carmen Fantasy.
Stay tuned for the next post to see Clara's beautiful 1708 ex Strauss Stradivarius!😍
Written in 1924, each sonata is dedicated to a contemporary violinist, including several of the composer’s own students. Each sonata reflects the performance style of its dedicatee. "Ballade" was written for Romanian violinist and composer George Enescu, who later taught Yehudi Menuhin.
Considered the greatest violinist of his time, Ysaÿe was born in Liège, Belgium. His incredible technical mastery of the instrument, combined with his unparalleled depth of expression, had an enormous impact on the repertoire in the early 20th century; the Belgian Ysaÿe Foundation lists over 200 works dedicated to him, including pieces by Debussy, Saint-Saëns, Chausson, and Franck.
Born into a family of instrumentalists, Ysaÿe began studying violin with his father when he was four. He entered the Conservatoire at Liège when he was only seven, the same year he made his public debut. He left the Conservatoire four years later to play in orchestras all across Europe, eventually continuing his studies at the Brussels Conservatoire; in 1886 he was offered a teaching position there.
Even while teaching at his alma mater, Ysaÿe continued to tour, as well as conduct concerts at home; he gave exposure to works by many French and Belgian composers.