Violin Sonata No.6 in g minor, Op.103
Fuchs wrote violin sonatas throughout most of his life. This is his last, composed in 1915 and dedicated to Adolf Busch, lead violinist of the famous Busch String Quartet.
Robert Fuchs (1847-1927) was born near the Styrian capital of Graz and attended the University of Vienna Conservatory studying with Otto Dessoff and Joseph Hellmesberger. By 1875, he himself was teaching at the Conservatory, eventually rising to the rank of Professor of Composition. He was one of the most famous and revered teachers of his time. Mahler, Sibelius, Hugo Wolf, Franz Schmidt, Alexander Zemlinsky, Franz Schrecker and Richard Heuberger were among his many students.
Sonata No.6 has a valedictory aura to it, perhaps it was a farewell to a bygone age, as the Austria Fuchs knew disintegrated during the First World War, The main theme of the opening movement, Allegro moderato, is both lyrical and elegiac. The second subject, though livelier, is also in the minor and does not brighten affairs. The middle movement, Andante sostenuto, is leisurely and songlike, with a faster contrasting middle section. The finale, Allegro vivace, begins in turbulent fashion but quickly becomes a fleet-footed dance with its haunting melodies. Full of drama and life, it provides a fitting close to this wonderful work.
All of Fuchs' violin sonatas are first rate, as good as any of their contemporaries. No.6 is no exception. This Sonata will delight recital audiences with its freshness and superbly crafted ideas. It deserves to be part of the late Romantic sonata repertoire.