The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra / Rudolf Koelman / Jan Willem de Vriend

Violin Concertos 1 & 2

Format: SACD
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917234329
Catnr: CC 72343
Release date: 02 October 2009
Challenge Classics
Catalogue number
CC 72343
Release date
02 October 2009

"One of the more enjoyable recent releases of these concertos"

The Strad, 02-2-2010

About the album

The programme offered in this CD forms a bridge between the two most popular violin concertos of Paganini and the operas of Rossini. The double bill of Paganini-Rossini opens our ears to Paganini’s operatic style of composing and - one might suggest - improvising techniques as well. The individual movements remind us of virtuosic or lyrical opera arias each with the solo violin replacing the human voice. Melody, melodic invention and virtuosity are the main elements. The orchestra contributes inventive introductions, intermezzos and codas, but when the soloist appears it is restricted to sustaining, underlining and punctuating his or her part. Sometimes it adds some color to the scoring as for example with the famous obbligato bell-ringing in the rondo finale of the second Concerto. A wide range of extensively employed embellishments similar to those used by Rossini in his arias, are employed to show off the virtuoso’s virtuosity often forcing notes as high as possible to regions, where there is virtually no space to place the playing fingers between bow and bridge. Paganini also uses ornamentation, as does Rossini, to enhance the expressive quality of music in a direct bodily way, which is difficult explain verbally. The physical act of tone production is the effect itself. The sequencing reiteration of musical figures ad infinitum correlates with the need to express oneself. So with Paganini as with Rossini there is no empty virtuoso tinkling. Rossini’s melodramma giocoso “Matilde di Shabran” (1821) was composed in such a hurry that the composer had no time to create a new overture but had to reuse one he had written two years ago for “Eduardo e Cristina”. Yet he inserted new wind parts introducing new thematic material in order to foreshadow the Finale I of “Matilde”, thus creating a tight nexus between the overture and the actual piece. There are many connections to Paganini’s style, for instance the tutti-beats at the beginning of both, overture and concertos, in order to attain the attention of a prattling auditorium, the melodic formation as well as the instrumentation namely in the piatti and cassa grande-parts of the first concerto, which obviously have been added later by Paganini.

Een brug van Rossini
Paganini’s twee populairste vioolconcerten worden op dit album verbonden door een ouverture van Rossini. Door deze brug worden onze oren geopend voor de compositiestijl van Paganini: opera-achtig met vele improvisatie-elementen.
De vioolconcerten worden gespeeld door Rudolf Koelman, een Amsterdamse violist. Van 1996 tot 1999 was hij concertmeester bij het Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest in Amsterdam. Hij doceert solo- en concertviool aan de Zürcher Hochschule der Künste in Zwitserland en leidt daar ook zijn kamerorkest ZHdK Strings.

Het Nederlands Symfonieorkest, ook bekend als het Orkest van het Oosten, werd in de jaren ’30 van de 20e eeuw opgericht onder leiding van Klaas de Rook. Het werd in 1947 grotendeels geprofessionaliseerd tot het Twents Philharmonisch Orkest, en in 1954 werd het een volledig professioneel orkest en kreeg het de naam Overijssels Philharmonisch Orkest. Na een gedwongen fusie met het Opera Forum in 1983 is het orkest in 1994 weer gereduceerd en ging het zelfstandig door als het Orkest van het Oosten. Sinds het seizoen van 2006-2007 tot 2018 was de chef-dirigent van het orkest Jan Willem de Vriend, die ook deze opname heeft gedirigeerd.

Das hier eingespielte Programm stellt eine Brücke zwischen den beiden beliebtesten Konzerten Paganinis und den Opern Rossinis her. Die Kadenzen dieser Aufnahme stammen von Carl Flesch (1. Konzert) und Rudolf Koelman (2. Konzert). Jan Willem de Vriend ist u.a. seit 2006 Chefdirigent und Künstlerischer Leiter des Netherlands Symphony Orchestra. Der niederländische Geiger Rudolf Koelman war von 1978 bis 1981 einer der letzten Schüler von Jascha Heifetz in Los Angeles. Bis 1999 war er erster Konzertmeister des 'Royal Concertgebouw Orchester' Amsterdam. Seitdem konzertiert er weltweit als Solist und Kammermusiker und lehrt an der Zürcher Hochschule der Künste.


Rudolf Koelman (1959, Amsterdam) received his first violin lessons at the age of seven from Jan Bor. In 1972 he began an extensive study of the violin under Herman Krebbers at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. From 1978 to 1981 he was one of Jascha Heifetz’s last pupils at the University of Southern California. Until 1999 he was first leader of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. He teaches at Zurich University of the Arts, is frequently invited as a juror at international violin competitions and as guest professor to many renomated universities and master courses world wide.

Jan Willem de Vriend studied the violin at the conservatories of Amsterdam and The Hague. In 1982 he established the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam, an ensemble that focuses on the performance of 17th and 18th century music. As a violinist and artistic director he has directed many remarkable concerts and opera productions. Since 2006/2007 Jan Willem de Vriend has taken up the position of principal conductor and artistic director of the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra (Orkest van het Oosten). He has accepted invitations to conduct the Koninklijk Concertgebouw Orkest,Mozarteum Orchester, Duisburger Symphoniker, Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal, Wiener Concert Verein and the Residentie Orkest. The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra is an orchestra with passion, commitment and virtuosity. The orchestra serves the province of Overijssel with concert series in Enschede, Hengelo, Zwolle and Deventer. Another important role for the orchestra is accompanying De Nationale Reisopera andprovincial choral societies. Working with top musicians from all over the world has contributed towards the orchestra achieving its aim of bringing concerts of the highest quality to a broad public. Important conductors for the orchestra were Ed Spanjaard, Rudolf Barshai, Martin Panteleev, Mark Shanahan, Vasili Petrenko and Otto Tausk. Jaap van Zweden made an indelible impression during his period as chief conductor and set the orchestra well and truly on the map. He will return frequently as guest conductor. Many great international soloists have worked with the orchestra – Gidon Kremer, Natalia Gutman, Heinrich Schiff, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Charlotte Margiono to name a few.



One of the more enjoyable recent releases of these concertos
The Strad, 02-2-2010

Play album


Rudolf Koelman LIVE in Spiegelzaal: Cantabile from Opus 17 of Paganini.

You might also like..

The Complete Symphonies Vol. 4 Symphony No. 5 D. 485 | Symphony No. 6 D. 589
Residentie Orkest The Hague / Jan Willem de Vriend
Eric Vloeimans / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra / Jurjen Hempel
Arias and Overtures
Stavanger Symphony Orchestra / Jan Willem de Vriend / Mari Eriksmoen
Complete Symphonies & Concertos (box set)
The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra / Jan Willem de Vriend
The Complete Symphonies Vol. 3 Symphony No.9, D.944
Residentie Orkest The Hague / Jan Willem de Vriend
Complete Works for Piano Trio (box set)
Van Baerle Trio
Complete Works for Piano Trio vol. 5
Van Baerle Trio | Residentie Orkest The Hague
The Complete Symphonies Vol. 2 Symphony No.1, D.82 / Symphony No.3 D.200 / Symphony No.8 D.759
Residentie Orkest The Hague / Jan Willem de Vriend
Religious Tetralogy
Antwerp Symphony Orchestra
The Complete Symphonies Vol. 1 Symphony No. 2 D. 125 / Symphony No. 4 D. 417
Residentie Orkest The Hague / Jan Willem de Vriend
Piano Concerto No. 3
Hannes Minnaar / Jan Willem de Vriend / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra