|Beethoven: Sonata for Piano and Violin, Op. 24, The Spring|
|2||Adagio molto espressivo||5:48|
|3||Scherzo: Allegro molto||1:09|
|4||Rondo: Allegro non troppo||6:41|
|Bartok: Sonata for Solo Violin (1944)|
|5||Tempo di ciaccona||9:40|
|Bax: Sonata No. 3 in G minor for Violin and Piano (1927)|
|11||Delius: Lullaby for a Modern Baby (1922-23)||2:30|
Ralph Holmes died in 1984, aged 47, at the height of his powers as one of Britain’s finest violinists. He has been forgotten too easily (though I vividly remember hearing towering performances as a schoolboy near Bournemouth, where he played regularly with the BSO) and judging by a recent CD tribute, curated by his friend and pianist Peter Dickinson, RH was ‘irreplaceable’ – as Vernon Handley described him.
Holmes studied at the Academy with David Martin, George Enescu in Paris and Ivan Galamian in New York. He was a revered professor at the Academy and played on one of our finest Strads. No violinist, arguably, has ever quite had the range of repertoire of Holmes ” certainly not in this country ” and this recital of previously unpublished BBC recordings of Beethoven, Bartok and Bax reinforces his genuine versatility. More than that, there is a warmth and uncompromising engagement which is profoundly moving. The ‘Spring’ Sonata is radiant and the Bartok Solo Sonata quite engrossing.
A fitting tribute, thank you, Prof Dickinson for refreshing our ears and minds with the achievements of a unique Academy figure.
Professor Jonathan Freeman-Attwood, Principle, Royal Academy of Music