Analekta AN 2 8729
I would venture to say that alongside tantalizing food products, sleek public transportation vehicles and couture fashion, violinist Angèle Dubeau could be regarded as an equally important Quebec commodity. Although she emerged as a soloist at a young age, her career has never been marked by flash and pizzazz. Rather, the approach she chose has been one of solid musicianship coupled with continuous learning and development, as seen in the 25 discs recorded for the Analekta label, either as a soloist, in chamber groups, or with her ensemble, La Pietà.
This newest release, titled simply “Virtuose” is rather like a tribute album, for instead of presenting newly-recorded material, it draws from recordings she has made over the last twelve years. The result is a most attractive and eclectic collection ranging from solo performances to those involving a full orchestra.
The CD opens with two familiar solo Caprices, the first by Locatelli, and the second by Paganini. Dubeau’s warm tone and technical virtuosity are immediately apparent as she treats these miniature gems with apparent ease. Considerably more dramatic are two final movements from 19th century concertos, those by Mendelssohn and Glazunov, and involving, respectively, the Orchestre Metropolitain, and Bulgarian Radio Symphony. Her affinity for chamber-music is discernible in pieces such as the finale from Schubert’s Violin Sonata in D major (with pianist Anton Kuerti), and the cheeky finale from the Martinu Sonata for Flute, Violin and Piano. Concluding with the tempestuous opening movement from the Sibelius Violin Concerto, the CD is a fine homage to an established Canadian virtuoso whom we certainly hope to enjoy for a long time to come.
Concert Note: Toronto audiences can hear Angèle Dubeau and La Pietà perform at the Jane Mallett Theatre on February 10.