NDR Symphony Orchestra
Christoph von Dohnányi, conductor
Vadim Repin, violin
Carnegie Hall, New York.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Following the Russian violinist Vadim Repin’s performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto No. 2 in E minor, Op. 64, my friend remarked to me that her benchmark for violinists has always been (as it is for many) Jascha Heifetz, but that Repin’s performance had come close to achieving the Heifetz standard.

This is a bold statement, but a fair one. The thirty-six-year-old Russian is a very different player from Heifetz, of course. Notably, Repin plays with fire rather than with ice, as the stoic Heifetz did. Yet he shares with the late master an effortless, uncommon virtuosity as well as the capacity to vacillate between romanticism and reserve. This ability was on display as Repin launched into the cadenza of the Concerto’s ...


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