Header image of page : AUGUSTIN DUMAY / JULIEN QUENTIN
chamber music



French violinist Augustin Dumay has recorded the three Brahms violin sonatas not once but twice, with the latest praised for his distinctive warmth and luminous clarity. Now he brings his interpretations to Verbier, in partnership with Julien Quentin.


Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major Op. 100
Violin Sonata No. 1 in G major Op. 78
Scherzo from the “F-A-E” Violin Sonata


Violin Sonata No. 3 in D minor Op. 108

Brahms’s first and second violin sonatas were both summer holiday compositions quoting songs of his. Their emotional worlds, though, are entirely different. The First was completed in 1879, shortly after the death of Clara Schumann’s 24 year old son, a tragedy Brahms felt keenly. Calm and anxiety rub shoulders in the first movement with its unusual 6/4 time signature; the Adagio opens major-keyed and hymn-like, but moves to dark E flat minor; the finale then quotes both from the Adagio and the songs ‘Nachklang’ (Reminiscence) and ‘Regenlied’ (Rain Song). The Second was then written in Thun in 1886, its warmly radiant outer movements quoting two songs penned the same holiday for an alto he was captivated by, Hermine Spies; and between them, a slow movement and scherzo rolled into one. The four-movement Third sonata, composed 1886-1888, returns us to a darker place, with even its loving Adagio and feather-light Scherzo sounding troubled.