Quatre Morceaux for Violin & Piano
Arensky's Op.30 for violin and piano date from 1894 and were dedicated to his friend and colleague at the Moscow Conservatory Jan Hrimaly. The first work, Prelude, was apparently inspired by Bach's Prelude in the Well Tempered Klavier. Full of dazzling runs and arpeggios, the work combines the spirit of Bach but in a Romantic aura. Next is a muted Serenade in the form of a waltz. The third piece, Berceuse, with its frequent meter changes at times recalls the ringing of bells. The finale work, Scherzo, gives the violinist a chance to show off his or her technique and lyrical abilities. They were never sold together and are presented here, for the first time, as a collected group.
Anton Arensky (1861-1906) was born in Novgorod but his family moved to St. Petersburg while he was still relatively young. His first piano lessons were from his mother. He entered the Petersburg Conservatory in 1879 and three years later graduated with high honors. Among his principal teachers was Rimsky-Korsakov. He subsequently taught at the Moscow Conservatory where he befriended and was influenced by Tchaikovsky and Sergei Taneyev
The length of a sonata, these four effective and finely contrasting pieces make an excellent recital choice. Long unavailable, we are pleased to reintroduce them.