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Catalogue | Solo Concerto

Christian Ferras plays Beethoven and Berg Violin Concertos
audite 95.590|Oct. 2011
EUR 13.99 CD

Christian Ferras plays Beethoven and Berg Violin Concertos

Christian Ferras was one of the prominent representatives of the Franco-Belgian violin school. This studio recording was made in 1951 on the occasion of his sensational début with the Berlin Philharmonic under Karl Böhm with Beethoven’s violin concerto. Ferras was also a leading interpreter of Alban Berg’s violin concerto, as is impressively demonstrated by this emotionally charged live recording with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin. more...

Christian Ferras
Radio-Symphonie-Orchester Berlin | Berliner Philharmoniker

Massimo Freccia | Karl Böhm

Ludwig van Beethoven | Alban Berg


Christian Ferras (1933-1982) was, alongside Jacques Thibaud, Zino Francescatti and Ginette Neveu, one of the great violinists who had a determining influence on the Franco-Belgian violin school: an art of playing the violin which is often associated with sensuality, elegance and a refined sound quality. Following his début in Paris in 1946 with the “Symphonie espagnole” by Édouard Lalo and Beethoven’s violin concerto, Ferras launched an international career. Together with the pianist Pierre Barbizet he formed a congenial duo which lasted for three decades. His cooperation with Herbert von Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic during the 1960s marked the pinnacle of his career. Ferras had made his début with the Berlin Philharmonic as early as 1951. Under the baton of Karl Böhm, he performed the Beethoven violin concerto at the Titania Palast. On this occasion a studio recording was made at the Jesus-Christus-Kirche in Berlin which is presented here. It is fascinating to experience the beauty and confident serenity of Ferras’ interpretation of the solo part when he was only eighteen years old. A live recording from 1964 with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin under the baton of the Italian-American conductor Massimo Freccia is an impressive document of Ferras’ reading of the Alban Berg violin concerto: he saw it as a primarily romantic work which he performed with great expressiveness to striking effect.

Ferras’ career took a tragic turn when, towards the end of the 1960s, he began battling with depression and alcoholism which resulted in a gradual withdrawal from concert life. In 1975, he accepted a professorship at the Paris Conservatoire and in the following years he no longer performed publicly. Ferras returned to the concert platform once more in March 1982; however, only three weeks after his final concert on 25 August 1982, at the age of 49, he took his own life.

This release is furnished with a “producer’s comment” by producer Ludger Böckenhoff on our home page .

This CD forms part of our series “Legendary Recordings” and bears the stamp “1st Master Release”. This term stands for the exceptional quality of audite’s archive releases which are all, without exception, produced using original tapes from the radio archives. Usually, these are the original analogue tapes with tape speeds of up to 76 cm/s which are of astonishingly high quality, even by today’s standards. In addition, the process of re-mastering – executed with professional expertise and sensitivity – reveals hitherto hidden details of the interpretations, creating a sonic image of superior quality. CD releases produced from private recordings of radio broadcasts or old 78rpm records cannot match this level of sound quality.

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Christian Ferras plays Beethoven and Berg Violin Concertos (audite 95.590)

part of the series: Historical Recordings of Legendary Violinists (at present 9 Productions):
article number: 95.590
EAN barcode: 4022143955906
price group: BCB
release date: 28. October 2011
total time: 72 min.

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