Violin Sonata No.1 in D Major, Op.27
Joseph Jongen (1873-1953) was truly born to be a musician. On the strength of an amazing precocity for music, he was admitted to the Liege Conservatory (in Belgium) where he spent the next sixteen years. It came as no surprise when he won the First Prize for Fugue in 1891, an honors diploma in piano the next year and another for organ in 1896. In 1897, he won the prestigious Grande Prix de Rome which allowed him to travel to Italy, Germany and France. He began composing at the age of 13 and immediately exhibited extraordinary talent. By the time he published his opus one, he already had dozens of works to his credit.
Jongen's First Violin Sonata dates from 1903 and was dedicated to the violin virtuoso Eugene Ysaye. It is in three movements. The opening Animé is full of passion as the music travels through several keys and tonalities. The middle movement, Assai Lent is mostly meditative in mood but not without drama in its central section. The finale, Animéis also quite dramatic, especially with the entrance of the main theme from the first movement, which is given a different treatment.
This is a big, first class work. It, without questions, belongs in the repertoire and must be considered one of the finest Franco-Belgian violin sonatas from the first part of the 20th century. Out of print and generally unavailable, we are very pleased to make it available to violinists.