Inspiring recordings for Viola Student

Meri Sheegog said: Nov 29, 2019
Suzuki Association Member
6 posts

One of my students who will be learning viola (when she’s big enough, she’s 5 right now) asked for viola music for Christmas! Her parents asked for recommendations for albums or artists. Honestly, I don’t even know who is out there. Do you have any suggestions?

Thank you!

Andrea Coyle said: Nov 30, 2019
Andrea Coyle
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Denver, CO
10 posts

I’ve always enjoyed my recordings of Kim Kashkashian.

Andrea Coyle
Andrea Coyle’s Violin & Viola Studio, LLC
Denver, CO, USA

Virginia Lamboley said: Nov 30, 2019
Virginia Lamboley
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Piano, Viola
Clearwater, FL
16 posts

I agree that Kim Kashkashian is great! Also Nobuki Imai.
I just found a new recording of viola solos with piano here:
Matthew Lipman, viola
Henry Kramer, piano
Violist Matthew Lipman dedicates this album of viola fantasies to the memory of his mother. Recipient of a 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Lipman commissioned Clarice Assad to write “Metamorfose,” a commentary on grief and acceptance which receives its premiere recording on this album. He also includes Dmitri Shostakovich’s long-lost “Impromptu for Viola and Piano,” Op. 33, recently unearthed in the Moscow State Archives. Other pieces include Robert Schumann’s “Fairy Tale Pictures,” York Bowen’s “Phantasy,” Garth Knox’s “Fuga libre” and Franz Waxman’s popular violin showpiece, “Carmen Fantasie.” Joining Lipman is pianist Henry Kramer.
Also, any recording of the Suzuki Viola Pieces from all 10 books would be wonderful to have her listen to.
Geraldine Walther’s recordings are beautiful, and her Bach Unaccompanied Suites for Viola are the best!
For a whole group of violas, try any recording of the Bach 6th Brandenburg Concerto.
Or the CD called The London Viola Sound from 1995, which is a whole orchestra of violists playing all genre’s and styles of music! Very interesting!

Virginia Lamboley
String Things Suzuki

Meri Sheegog said: Dec 2, 2019
Suzuki Association Member
6 posts

Thanks, Andrea and Virginia! These are great, and I’m excited to listen and share these recordings!

Alina Kirshon-Goldman said: Dec 2, 2019
Alina Kirshon-Goldman
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Voice, Viola
Herndon, VA
8 posts

Tabea Zimmerman, Rivka Golani, Yuri Bashmet. All available on Spotify.
Second Kim.

Alina Kirshon-Goldman

Susan Gagnon said: Dec 3, 2019
Susan GagnonTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
7 posts

Actually there is another great violist we cannot forget. He was instrumental in promoting the viola as legitimate solo instrument: Willam Primrose.
His interpretation of the Brahms Viola Sonatas are standard reference, and lets not forget his association with Heifetz and Piatigorsky. You cannot find finer interpretation of Beethoven’s string trios.

For reading material, I suggest the Barenreiter’s Sassmannhaus Viola Recital Albums. It comes in four volumes, all written in first position. The first volume is really basic, but it gets increasingly more challenging by the 4th volume. All pieces are wonderfully arranged for piano and an optional 2nd viola part.

An other one is the The Royal Conservatory Viola Repertoire Series, published by Frederic Harris.
The levels range from Preparatory to Level 8, which can be compared to Suzuki Viola Book 7-8. All volumes come with a CD. For my part, this series is one of the most comprehensive collection of progressive pieces for viola beside the Viola Suzuki School books.
Pierre Yves Gagnon

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