Daniel Hope

Belle Époque

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Belle Époque Review

by James Manheim

The Belle Époque, the era lasting from the end of the Franco-Prussian War to the beginning of World War I (1871-1914), was a diverse period; the name is indicative at best of general tendencies such as peace and prosperity, along with darker trends. Violinist Daniel Hope's Belle Époque album contains music from various countries in a wide range of styles, and it's not quite a concept album. However, it does hang together in interesting ways. Hope's program mixes orchestral pieces and chamber music; this could easily have happened in a late 19th century concert, which might have thrown in some solo piano music as well. His selections from both the salon and the learned studio, pieces like Fritz Kreisler's Liebesleid, bump up against Webern's Four Pieces, Op. 7, with most of the music somewhere in between. What's fascinating is that the light and heavy works seem to have things to say to each other. It helps that Hope unearths some less familiar items and recruits enthusiastic collaborators. The Concerto for violin, piano, and string quartet of Chausson (here played with a string orchestra) is an unusual and moody work, and there are such novelties as Schoenberg's totally tonal Notturno for violin, harp, and string orchestra. Several pieces make use of Jane Berthe's harp, an instrument that doesn't always get its due in 19th century programming. The chamber music disc is full of attractive and rarely played items, such as Alexander Zemlinsky's Serenade and George Enescu's Impromptu concertant, and if the Webern seems to come out of nowhere, an audience of the early 20th century might not have heard it that way. Both enjoyable and innovative, like so much of Hope's work.

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Romance Op. 6/1
1 Daniel Hope 05:47 Amazon
2 Daniel Hope 01:17 Amazon
Serenade in A major
3 Daniel Hope 02:07 Amazon
4 Little Pieces Op. 32 for Piano, Violin and Horn
4 Daniel Hope 01:51 Amazon
5 Daniel Hope 00:59 Amazon
6 Daniel Hope 02:00 Amazon
7 Daniel Hope 03:02 Amazon
8 Daniel Hope 04:17 Amazon
9 Daniel Hope 14:15 Amazon
10 Daniel Hope 01:08 Amazon
11 Daniel Hope 05:15 Amazon
12 Daniel Hope 01:24 Amazon
Berceuse Op. 28/3
13 Daniel Hope 02:30 Amazon
14 Daniel Hope 01:06 Amazon
Miniatures for Violin, Cello and Piano
15 Daniel Hope 03:11 Amazon
Préludes (12) for piano, Book I
16 Daniel Hope 02:22 Amazon
17 Daniel Hope 03:14 Amazon
18 Daniel Hope 03:03 Amazon
Préludes (12) for piano, Book I
19 Daniel Hope 02:12 Amazon
4 Pieces Op. 7
20 Daniel Hope 01:06 Amazon
21 Daniel Hope 01:21 Amazon
22 Daniel Hope 01:27 Amazon
23 Daniel Hope 00:56 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick