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HENNING KRAGGERUD

Norwegian Henning Kraggerud, who began playing the violin at the age of seven, later studied with Camilla Wicks and Emanuel Hurwitz, thus tapping into American and mid-European traditions of playing. He has, however, always maintained strong connections with his native land. A recipient of the prestigious Grieg Prize, he appears frequently at Norway’s major festivals playing both violin and viola. Kraggerud, who is greatly inspired by Ysaÿe’s compositions, hailing him as possibly the greatest violinist-composer, is also active as a composer himself (producing several cadenzas as well as original works) and is a keen exponent of new music. Directing and conducting activities have seen him work with the Zürich Chamber Orchestra and at the City of London Festival with the Britten Sinfonia. He is currently professor at the Barratt Due Institute of Music in Oslo.

Commenting on the influences of historical performing practice upon his playing, Kraggerud complains that early music is often made to sound too stylised or self-conscious: ‘I think in order to enchant an audience, you need a lot of different tools to make a suitably varied interpretation…If you take away vibrato altogether, and put nothing in its place, the result, for me, is likely to be sterile. In Louis Spohr’s generation, they used a lot of portamento […] If you […] remove the vibrato in common use today without adding the compensatory portamento, you may end up with nothing at all.’

Whilst Kraggerud’s theories may not be academically researched in detail, one cannot doubt his sincerity and perception. Indeed, his playing admirably represents the rich vein of thoughtful musicianship from north-European artists. His discography has a strong Norwegian flavour and his playing bears witness to the Germanic structures and rhetorical expansiveness of Scandinavian music most convincingly, especially in two beautifully considered pieces from an album of Sinding’s violin and piano music (2006), an arresting Adagio from Ole Bull’s Violin Concerto (1999), and a tightly wound but passionately smouldering Sibelius Serenade Op. 69b (2003). By contrast, Ysaÿe’s Solo Sonata, Op. 27 No. 4 (2007) begins explosively and conveys a noticeably tighter and more acerbic sound world.

Kraggerud’s aesthetic approach is relatively conventional, using familiar tools of style, but his considered artistry comes across powerfully in some charismatic performances.

© Naxos Rights International Ltd. — David Milsom (A–Z of String Players, Naxos 8.558081-84)

Mining the Essence – Henning Kraggerud Interviewed by Jeremy Siepmann

Box Set Release Catalogue Number
25th Anniversary Boxed Sets - Violin Concertos Naxos 8.501058
Meditation Naxos 8.508010
Meditation (Swedish Edition) Naxos 8.503163
The Very Best Of Naxos 8.502020


Albums featuring this artist are available for download from ClassicsOnline.com
View by Role: Classical Artist | Arranger
Role: Classical Artist 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 
A TO Z OF STRING PLAYERS Naxos Educational
8.558081-84
Chamber Music
ARGERICH, Martha: Live at the Verbier Festival (2007-2008) (NTSC) Ideale Audience
3078928
Classical Concert
CLASSICAL CHILL 1 - The Ultimate Collection Naxos
8.570171-72
Orchestral
GREAT VIOLIN CONCERTOS (10-CD Box Set) Naxos
8.501058
Concertos
GRIEG (THE VERY BEST OF) Naxos
8.552123-24
Chamber Music
GRIEG FOR MEDITATION (Swedish Edition) Naxos
8.557996
Orchestral
GRIEG, E.: Genius of Grieg (The) Naxos
8.570390
Chamber Music
GRIEG, E.: Masterpieces Naxos
8.503186
Chamber Music, Orchestral
GRIEG, E.: Violin Sonatas Nos. 1-3 (arr. for violin and orchestra) (Kraggerud, Tromso Chamber Orchestra) Naxos
8.573137
Concertos
GRIEG: Violin Sonatas Nos. 1-3 Naxos
8.553904
Chamber Music
MAGIC MOUNTAIN (THE) - Verbier Festival Anniversary Box (5 DVD Box Set) Ideale Audience
3079078
Classical Concert
MOZART, W.A.: Divertimento in E-Flat Major, K. 563 (Kraggerud, Tomter, C. Richter) Naxos
8.572258
Chamber Music
MUSICAL JOURNEY (A) - NORWAY: A Musical Tour of the Country's Past and Present (NTSC) Naxos
2.110515
Classical Concert
Norwegian Violin Favourites Naxos
8.554497
Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral
Orchestral Music - PETERSON-BERGER, W. / LARSSON, L.-E. / SIBELIUS, J. / GRIEG, E. / ALFVEN, H. (Nordic Favourites) Naxos
8.554782
Orchestral
SIBELIUS, J.: Violin Concerto / DVORAK, A.: Violin Concerto (Kraggerud, Kaler, Engeset, Kolchinsky) Naxos
8.572953
Concertos
SIBELIUS: Violin Concerto / SINDING: Violin Concerto No. 1 Naxos
8.557266
Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos
SIBELIUS: Violin Concerto / SINDING: Violin Concerto No. 1 Naxos
5.110056
Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos
SIBELIUS: Violin Concerto / SINDING: Violin Concerto No. 1 Naxos
6.110056
Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos
SINDING, C.: Violin and Piano Music (Kraggerud, Hadland) Naxos
8.572214-15
Orchestral, Chamber Music
SINDING, C.: Violin and Piano Music, Vol. 1 (Kraggerud, Hadland) Naxos
8.572254
Orchestral, Chamber Music
SINDING, C.: Violin and Piano Music, Vol. 2 (Kraggerud, Hadland) Naxos
8.572255
Chamber Music
SPOHR, L.: Concertantes Nos. 1 and 2 / Duet in G Major, Op. 3, No. 3 (Kraggerud, Bjora, Oslo Camerata, Baratt Due Chamber Orchestra, Barratt-Due) Naxos
8.570840
Concertos, Chamber Music
TONER TILL TROST (Music for Comfort) Naxos
8.503158
Orchestral
VERBIER FESTIVAL HIGHLIGHTS 2008 (NTSC) Ideale Audience
3078178
Classical Concert
Violin Music - OLSEN, C.G.S. / ATTERBERG, K. / STENHAMMAR, W. / BULL, O.B. / HALVORSEN, J. / SIBELIUS, J. (Nordic Violin Favourites) (Kraggerud) Naxos
8.572827
Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos, Orchestral, Concertos
YSAYE, E.: String Trio, "Le Chimay" / Sonata for 2 Violins / Cello Sonata (Kraggerud, Monsen, Tomter, Ree) Naxos
8.570977
Instrumental, Chamber Music

Role: Arranger 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 





 
 
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