Perlman is scheduled to play Wolfgang Mozart’s Sonata for Violin & Piano in A-Major, K. 526, Richard Strauss’ Sonata in E-Flat Major for Violin & Piano, Opus 18; Igor Stravinsky’s Suite Italienne for Violin & Piano and other works to be announced from the stage.
I don’t hold with calling an artist the “greatest living” anything. That said, when it comes to violinists, there is certainly no greater one now playing than Perlman. Not only will he play any music that has a fiddle in it, he actually seems to enjoy it. He plays bluegrass, jazz, country, rock, Middle Eastern and Asian — but most of all, he plays classical.
From the lush romanticism of Jean Sibelius and Edward Elgar to the inspiring sound cathedrals of Johann Bach and Ludwig Beethoven, and from the gypsy throbbing of Pablo de Sarasate and the measured folk dignity of Scott Joplin to the austere expressionism of Alban Berg, Perlman plays every piece like it’s the reason he took up the violin in the first place. He is the ideal servant of the composer’s intentions.
The Mozart is a late work, and the Strauss is an early one (though, at 24, he was already the master of every nuance of every instrument). The Stravinsky piece is a kind of reduction of his ballet Pulcinella, which in turn is based on themes from a number of trio sonatas that may, or may not, be by Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (1710-36). After he died, young and famous, literally hundreds of mostly spurious compositions turned up with Pergolesi’s name on them.
Tickets to Thursday’s concert are available from the Granada box office at 1214 State St. or 805.899.2222, or click here to purchase them online.
— Gerald Carpenter covers the arts as a Noozhawk contributor. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.