In a rare meeting of musical minds, Itzhak Perlman and Martha Argerich found the time in their demanding schedules to record a new album, to be released on Warner Classics. It has been 18 years since their last album together: a live recital from the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. On that momentous occasion in 1998, the pair performed three of the 19th century's most ambitious and enthralling works for violin and piano – Beethoven's Kreutzer Sonata, the Franck Violin Sonata and Schumann's Violin Sonata No. 1.
The first two sonatas were released in 1999 by EMI Classics in what was the pair's only recording together until now. The Schumann Violin Sonata will at long last be released alongside the new recordings from the Paris sessions, making their forthcoming album a fascinating ‘then and now' portrait of how two living legends have evolved musically. In addition to the 1998 recording, this milestone collaboration between Argerich and Perlman sees the duo explore three masterpieces from the Baroque to the Romantic in intimate chamber recital: Bach's Violin Sonata No.4 in C Minor, BWV 1017 (with its famous Siciliano), Schumann's impassioned Fantasiestücke Op 73, and Brahms's Scherzo from the Sonatensatz in C minor (the ‘F.A.E. Sonata'), dedicated to the great violinist Joseph Joachim.
"Martha is the most amazing pianist," says Perlman of his recital partner. "It's always been my dream to make music with her... We thought of completing that recording from 1998 by making another record almost 20 years later. Working with Martha was a unique experience for me...Her brilliance and the colours she uses when she plays are recognisable as soon as you hear them – it's her; nobody else sounds like that... I am so excited that we were actually able to record together again...When this possibility came along that she might be able to have a couple of days free to record I said, ‘I'll go any place!'" Argerich added: "I feel so stimulated to play with Itzhak, it's really a feast – fantastic! It's a very special relationship, I am completely enchanted."