Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35 (North American Edition)

Erich Wolfgang Korngold
Catalog numbers: 

LKMP S510015/ HL 327913

Duration (minutes): 
Detailed Instrumentation: 
Violin (solo part only)
This new edition of the violin solo part to the Korngold Violin Concerto in D Major is the first-ever to include Jascha Heifetz' performance notations, edited by Endre Granat, one of his star proteges. Born in Austria, Korngold was forced into US exile by the annexation of Austria by the Nazis. He had vowed to give up composing anything other than film music until Hitler had been defeated. With the end of World War II, he retired from films to concentrate on music for the concert hall. The Violin Concerto was the first such work that Korngold wrote, following some initial persuasion from violinist and fellow émigré Bronisław Huberman. Korngold had been hurt by the assumption that a successful film composer was one that had sold his integrity to Hollywood. He was thus determined to prove himself with a work that combined vitality and superb craftsmanship. Korngold composed his Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 35, in 1945, dedicating it to Alma Mahler, the widow of his childhood mentor, Gustav Mahler. The work was premiered on February, 15 1947 by Jascha Heifetz and the St. Louis Symphony under conductor Vladimir Golschmann. It received the most enthusiastic ovation in St. Louis concert history at the time. On 30 March 1947, Heifetz played the concerto in Carnegie Hall with the New York Philharmonic conducted by Efrem Kurtz; the broadcast performance was recorded on transcription discs. Heifetz's performance launched the work into the standard repertoire, and it quickly became Korngold's most popular piece. Concerning Heifetz's performance of the work, the composer wrote, "In spite of the demand for virtuosity in the finale, the work with its many melodic and lyric episodes was contemplated more for a Caruso than for a Paganini. It is needless to say how delighted I am to have my concerto performed by Caruso and Paganini in one person: Jascha Heifetz."