Strauss: Violin Sonata; Franck: Violin Sonata; Prélude, Fugueet Variation
AugustinDumay(violin), Louis Lortie (piano), OnyxONYX 4096 ***
The 64-year-old César Franck wrote his Violin Sonata in A in 1886, and 22-year-old Richard Strauss his Violin Sonata in E flat a year later. The predominantly autumnal Franck is everywhere, purloined by flautists, cellists and others short of romantic repertoire. The mostly eager Strauss is on the margins, long cherished for its improvisatory central Andante at the expense of its showy outer movements. Even Dumay and Lortie’s approach, highlighting hints of the mature Strauss, can’t turn the tables. The disc also runs to three arrangements, including Franck’s Prélude, fugue et variation, originally for organ, but not benefitting as you might expect from the dynamic nuancing opened up by violin and piano.