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Ian Lace
MusicWeb International, June 2012

The notion of collecting so many gracious stylised gems with such Kreisler’s favourites as his Liebesleid and Caprice Viennois makes for good programming. The string orchestra accompaniment adds satisfying refinement and colour. The soloist is recorded well forward.

Taking the favourites first: Bánfalvi’s reading of Caprice Viennois eschews a heart-on-sleeve, schmaltzy approach in favour of more thoughtful and shaded qualities, neatly contrasting gaiety with nostalgic wistfulness. Liebesfreud waltzes along lightly and sweetly enough—with just a touch of self-parody in its glissandi—while the slower more romantic Liebesleid is just a touch restrained; so too is the lovely Schön Rosmarin though here it sounds subtly flirty and capricious.

The other pieces, which emulate earlier styles, certainly enchant. Bánfalvi’s readings bring nicely judged phrasing to the slower more sentimental examples and a measure of flamboyance to the trickier, swifter-moving items. Each has its appeal. I would just mention the grace and coy charm of La Précieuse that made me think of the paintings of Watteau, the heartfelt, poignantly lovelorn atmosphere of Aubade provencale and the allegro fireworks of the Praeludium und Allegro.

A delight. © 2012 MusicWeb International Read complete review

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