Ferdinand David

Ferdinand David (1810-1873)

Nationality: German
Born: June 19, 1810, Hamburg Died: July 18, 1873, Klosters, Switzerland (age 63)

5 Salonstücke, Op. 28

(for violin and piano)
I. Notturno
II. Lied
III. Capriccio
2:44 IV. Romanze
2:35 V. Barcarole
Published: 1851, Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel (age 40-41)
Dedication: Frau Theresa Meyer (née David)
1 recording, 2 videos
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Ingolf Turban, Lukas Maria Kuen
IV. Romanze
Ingolf Turban, Lukas Maria Kuen
V. Barcarole
From Edition Silvertrust

Perhaps it was coincidence, but Ferdinand David (1810-1873) was born in the same house in Hamburg as Felix Mendelssohn one year later. The two became colleagues and friends. David studied violin with the famous virtuoso Louis Spohr. He served as concertmaster of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra under the baton of Mendelssohn and held the position of Professor of Violin at the Leipzig Conservatory. Among his many famous students were Joseph Joachim and August Wilhelmj. His name has endured as the editor of several famous chamber music works and as well as pieces for the violin. Among his compositions still in use are his Advanced School of Violin Playing and Art of Bowing.

David wrote four series of Salon Stücke or Salon Pieces, his Opp.24, 25, 28 and 36. The Op.28 is the third of the series and was completed in 1850 and published the year after. The title David gave to these pieces is somewhat misleading, implying that are merely works for the salon. Nothing could be further from the truth—to the contrary they combine the radicalism of his good friend Schumann, but dressed up in appealing garb. However, these are not mere morsels, but substantial pieces, all fit for the recital hall. The Op.28 consists of five pieces. Notturno, Barcarole, Lied, Romanze and Capriccio.

Although all five pieces could make up an entire recital work or even a short program and though they are the equal of a full length sonata, it seems likely that David did not intend for all to be performed at one time. Indeed, they were sold separately and collectively in three books of four. What was intended was for the performer to pick a few to make up half a recital program or to use any one for a suitable encore. Tremendously popular throughout the 19th century, this is how they were heard in concert—and they were heard often, because they are highly attractive works. The Salonstücke are historically important because they are a mirror of the Biedermeier era from which they come. They give us a first hand glance at what was being performed at mid century.

© Edition Silvertrust. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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