Newsletter Signup

Become a ABC Music VIP Newsletter subscriber for all the latest ABC Music artist and label news!

Richard Tognetti & Erin Helyard - Beethoven & Mozart Violin Sonatas

In this landmark recording of violin sonatas by Mozart and Beethoven, pianist Erin Helyard’s intimate knowledge of the soundworld of Classical Vienna is paired with the passionate eloquence of Richard Tognetti on violin: two of Australia’s most exciting performers in a double album of chamber music masterworks, including Beethoven’s epic, groundbreaking ‘Kreutzer’ Sonata.

The history of the violin sonata, says Helyard, is rooted in the mating rituals of the 18th-century middle class. Music was one of the few occasions where the two sexes were allowed to intermingle, so the violin sonata offered a rare opportunity for men and women to spend time together.

Both Mozart and Beethoven embraced the expressive potential of the violin sonata, drawing new lyrical and dramatic effects from both instruments. The music also reflects the changing roles of women and men, as the 18th century gave way to the 19th. No longer was the violin part a mere pretext for courtship; no longer was music considered a core accomplishment for ladies and a casual hobby for dilettante gentlemen. In these sonatas we hear the piano and violin renegotiating their roles. With Mozart they arrive on a more equal footing, but with Beethoven the violin is even more dominant.

The highly-charged atmosphere, and the dynamic tension both in the music and the context of the era, is strikingly represented by the album’s artwork – a photograph by Richard Tognetti, depicting a uniquely Australian scene of a beach town just before a thunderstorm. Two figures walk towards the gathering storm, as rain begins to fall on the bitumen and the weatherboard houses. Though a world away from 18th-century Vienna, this image seems to reflect that city’s musical landscape at the time – with the dark, glowering, dramatic cloud of Beethoven looming, poised to change everything.

Richard Tognetti is well known to audiences across Australia and around the world as the leader and Artistic Director of the Australian Chamber Orchestra. His ABC Classic recordings of Bach’s violin works – the solo sonatas and partitas, the sonatas for violin and keyboard, and the violin concertos – won the Best Classical ARIA Award for three years running, and he continues to win international praise for his thrilling interpretations of the iconic works of the Classical masters.

Erin Helyard, recently acclaimed by Limelight magazine as ‘Australia’s most engaging soloist’, is a virtuosic and expressive interpreter of the harpsichord and fortepiano, and an internationally respected scholar, passionate about promoting discourse between musicology and performance. As Artistic Director and co-founder of Pinchgut Opera and the Orchestra of the Antipodes, he has forged new standards of excellence in historically informed performance in Australia. For this recording Erin performs on an exceptional replica of a 1790s piano by Anton Walter – whose instruments were owned and played by both Mozart and Beethoven.




Violin Sonata in E minor, KV304

1 I. Allegro

2 II. Tempo di Menuetto


3 Six Variations on the Aria ‘Der Vogelfänger bin ich ja’


Violin Sonata in B-flat major, KV454

4 I. Largo –

5 Allegro

6 II. Andante

7 III. Allegretto


8 Seven Variations on ‘Là ci darem la mano’, Op. 7 No. 1


Violin Sonata in A major, KV526

9 I. Molto allegro

10 II. Andante

11 III. Presto



Violin Sonata in G major, Op. 30 No. 3

1 I. Allegro assai

2 II. Tempo di minuetto, ma molto moderato e grazioso

3 III. Allegro vivace

Violin Sonata Op. 47 ‘Kreutzer’

4 I. Adagio sostenuto –

5 Presto

6 II. Andante con variazioni

7 III. Finale: Presto

The Huntington Estate Music Festival is one of the brightest stars in Australia’s musical firmament. For three decades, it has been bringing together top-flight musicians from around the country and around the world to present a breathtaking array of chamber music masterpieces, both iconic favourites and delicious new discoveries. Presented by the Huntington Estate Winery in association with Musica Viva Australia, and held in the winery’s Barrel Room, one of the most remarkable and surprising music venues in the world, the Festival is a delight to audiences and musicians alike.After 30 stellar years of exceptional music-making, however, the 2019 Festival will be the last, with Huntington Estate owners Tim and Nicky Stevens reluctantly deciding that their grapes – and their young family – must come first. To mark this significant occasion, ABC Classic is proud to delve into its broadcast archives to present this selection of some of the Festival’s most memorable performances across a typically diverse and intriguing range of repertoire: from Schubert and Dvořák to Bach’s astonishing eldest son Wilhelm Friedemann and Australian composers Ross Edwards and Ian Munro.It was Richard Tognetti and the Australian Chamber Orchestra who began the Festival and established it as a serious contender on the world stage – and the hottest concert tickets in the country! This album includes superb three recordings from those early years: music of Mendelssohn, Brahms and Percy Grainger.In 2006, the ACO passed the baton to Musica Viva and Artistic Director Carl Vine, opening up the Festival’s artist roster to an extraordinary range of musicians, both local and international. From among the literally hundreds of thrilling performances, this album features New York-based Australian pianist Andrea Lam, Russian-Armenian clarinettist Narek Arutyunian, the rich bass-baritone of Teddy Tahu Rhodes and Vienna’s acclaimed Eggner Trio, along with regular Festival guests the Goldner String Quartet and the rising stars of the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) Chamber Orchestra.…/2The CD of this compilation is available exclusively at the Festival itself, but for all those who can’t make the trip to Mudgee, ABC Classic is releasing the full album as a digital album, for download and streaming, so that audiences all around the world can share in the celebration. TRACKLISTING  1     MENDELSSOHN Symphony No. 3 ‘Scottish’: II. Vivace non troppo2     BRAHMS arr. ANGERER Chorale Prelude ‘O Gott, du frommer Gott’3     GRAINGER Blithe Bells       Australian Chamber Orchestra, Richard Tognetti director (2002 / 2004)        SCHUBERT4     An die Musik (To Music)5     Erlkönig (The Erl-King)6     Die Forelle (The Trout)7     Die Taubenpost (Pigeon Post) from Schwanengesang       Teddy Tahu Rhodes bass-baritone, Kristian Chong piano (2007)        WF BACH Sinfonia in F major ‘Dissonant’8     I. Vivace9     II. Andante10   III. Vivace11   IV. Menuetto I & II       ANAM Chamber Orchestra, Paul Wright violin / conductor (2010)      12   ROSS EDWARDS String Quartet No. 2 ‘Shekina Fantasy’:       I. Allegro moderato       Goldner String Quartet (2010)        MENDELSSOHN13   Song without Words Op. 67 No. 2 – Allegro leggiero14   Song without Words Op. 85 No. 4 – Andante sostenuto       Andrea Lam piano (2012) 15   WEBER Clarinet Quintet in B-flat major: II. Fantasia       Narek Arutyunian clarinet, Australian String Quartet (2012)        MUNRO Piano Trio No. 2 ‘Book of Lullabies’ – Excerpts16   II. Lullaby in Edo17   III. Kun Mun Kultani Tulisi18   IV. Skye Boat Song       Dimity Hall violin, Julian Smiles cello, Ian Munro piano (2013) 19   DVOŘÁK Piano Trio No. 1: II. Adagio molto e mesto       Eggner Trio (2015)