Angela Chun / Jennifer Chun

Bartók: 44 Violin Duos

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    9
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AllMusic Review by

Reflecting Béla Bartók's avid interest in Hungarian folk music, the 44 Duos for two violins are inventive arrangements of indigenous melodies, published in four books that cover many regional styles and popular forms. While brief and to the point -- most are under two minutes' duration -- these songs and dances still present special problems of coordination, technique, and expression that are unique to the art of duet playing, particularly for such spare instrumentation as two violins. Violinists Angela and Jennifer Chun share an approach that makes their 2010 release of these pieces appear intelligently planned and stylistically unified, though their vivid string sonorities and spontaneous exchanges make the music feel colorful and engaging, and far from an exercise. Compared to some of the large-scale masterpieces Bartók wrote at the same time, such as the String Quartet No. 5 and the Piano Concerto No. 2, the 44 Duos are quite modest and unassuming, but they are significant because they represent Bartók's innovative work in the field of ethnomusicology and are somewhat more important in his oeuvre than they may appear. Harmonia Mundi's sound is credibly present and almost palpable, preserving enough grittiness in the string tone to make it feel close-up and natural.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
44 Violin duos, Sz. 98
1 00:44 Amazon
2 00:35 Amazon
3 01:23 Amazon
4 00:56 Amazon
5 00:43 Amazon
6 00:42 Amazon
7 00:41 Amazon
8 00:57 Amazon
9 01:10 Amazon
10 01:12 Amazon
11 01:06 Amazon
12 02:07 Amazon
13 01:02 Amazon
14 01:09 Amazon
15 01:00 Amazon
16 00:33 Amazon
17 00:29 Amazon
18 01:05 Amazon
19 00:46 Amazon
20 00:54 Amazon
21 01:08 Amazon
22 01:08 Amazon
23 00:52 Amazon
24 01:00 Amazon
25 01:23 Amazon
26 01:29 Amazon
27 01:37 Amazon
28 02:23 Amazon
29 00:50 Amazon
30 00:59 Amazon
31 02:23 Amazon
32 02:08 Amazon
33 01:00 Amazon
34 01:28 Amazon
35 01:08 Amazon
36 00:58 Amazon
37 01:21 Amazon
38 01:03 Amazon
39 01:37 Amazon
40 00:48 Amazon
41 01:29 Amazon
42 01:00 Amazon
43 00:47 Amazon
44 02:56 Amazon
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