Saturday, February 26, 2011

Top 60 Most Recommended Violin Concertos

Will it possible to list out the list of most recommended violin concertos from the whole classical music repertoire? Surely not easy, but here I am, listing out the 60(+) pieces that I think I will recommend to new and hardcore listener.

For avoiding vague comparision of the uncomparable, I will group this into 5 groups, Group 1: Overall Must listen repertoire, Group 2: most recommended in violin playing, Group 3: most recommended in orchestration Group 4: all the rest underated / less known / and for hardcore violin concerto fans. Sure I'm missing tons of other because I haven't heard about them yet. And for Baroque period, it will not fully accommodated also because I excluded tons of Baroque violin concertos by Tartini, Telemann, Vivaldi etc. And , it is mostly on my taste and (very less) knowledge of course. I also must exclude most of Classical era repertoire , and think about to sort it out on other post. Here we go:

Group 1 - Must Listen Violin Concerto, the Basic Repertoire
Top 10 Violin Concertos

01. Sibelius Violin Concerto in Dm - recommend records [by Cho Liang Lin / Esa-Peka Salonen] [Vadim Brodski]
02. Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in Em - recommend records [by Itzhak Perlman] [Anne Akiko Meyer]
03. Paganini Violin Concerto no.2 in Bm La Campanella - recommend records [by Salvatore Accardo]
04. Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in D - recommend records [by Isaac Stern] [Midori]
05. Lalo Symphonie Espagnole Op.21 - recommend records [by Maxim Vengerov]
06. Bruch Violin Concerto no.1 in Gm - recommend records [by Itzhak Perlman]
07. Bartok Violin Concerto no.2 - recommend records [by Anne-Sophie Mutter]
08. Dvorak Violin Concerto in Am - recommend records [by Josef Suk]
09. Mozart Violin Concerto no.5 in A (& others) - recommend records [by Itzhak Perlman / James Levine]
10. Barber Violin Concerto Op.14 - recommend records [by Gil Shaham]

Group 2 : The next listening, for its violin virtuosity
11. Prokofiev Violin Concerto no.1 in D - recommend records [by David Oistrakh]
12. Paganini Violin Concerto no.1 in D - recommend records [by Yehudi Menuhin] [Vadim Brodski]
13. Khachaturian Violin Concerto in Dm - recommend records [by Julia Fishcer]
14. Jeno Hubay Violin Concerto no.2 in Em (and others) - recommend records [by Hagai Shaham]
15. Saint Saens Violin Concerto no.2 in C - recommend records [by Jascha Heifetz]
16. Ravel Tzigane, rapsodie de concert (orchestra version) - recommend records [by Maxim Vengerov]
17. Vieuxtemps Violin Concerto no.5 in Am & the other four - recommend records [by Jascha Heifetz]
18. Wieniawski Violin Concerto no.2 in Dm - recommend records [by Gil Shaham]
19. Wolf Ferrari Violin Concerto in D - recommend records [by Ulf Hoelscher]
20. Strauss,R Violin Concerto in Dm - recommend records [by Sarah Chang]

Group 3 : ..Here the concertos for its great orchestration
21. Brahms Violin Concerto in D  - recommend records [by Itzhak Perlman]
22. Elgar Violin Concerto in Bm - recommend records [by Nigel Kennedy / Simon Rattle]
23. Bach Concerto for Two Violins in Dm - recommend records [by Andrew Manze] [Midori]
24. Beethoven Violin Concerto in D - recommend records [by Itzhak Perlman] [Hillary Hahn]
25. Walton Violin Concerto - recommend records [by James Ehnes]
26. Myaskovsky Violin Concerto in Dm - recommend records [by Vadim Repin] [David Oistrakh]
27. Glazunov Violin Concerto in Am - recommend records [by Gil Shaham] [Julia Fischer]
28. Goldmark Violin Concerto - recommend records [by Joshua Bell] [Nathan Milstein]
29. Korngold Violin Concerto in D - recommend records [by Philipe Quint]
30. Nielsen Violin Concerto - recommend records [by Cho Liang Lin] [Maxim Vengerov]

Group 3: And here for you who already in the entrance of Violin Concerto addiction...
31. Rozsa Violin Concerto  - recommend records [by Jascha Heifetz]
32. Vaughan-Williams Violin Concerto in Dm Accademica  - recommend records [by Kenneth Sillito
32b. Vaughan-Williams The Lark Ascending - [by Hillary Hahn] [by Nigel Kennedy] [Anne A. Meyer]
33. Saint Saens Violin Concerto no.3 in Bm  - recommend records [ by Jascha Heifetz
34. Kabalevsky Violin Concerto in C Op.48  - recommend records [by Lydia Mordkovitch
35. Joachim Violin Concerto in Hungarian Style Op.11  - recommend records [by Elmar Oliveira
36. Chen Gang/He Zhan-hao The Butterfly Lover Violin Concerto
 originally an Erhu Concerto but it transcript perfectly for violin -recommend records [by Takako Nishizaki]   [by Gil Shaham] [by Centre So & Wuhan Concertory of Music So]
37. Bruch Violin Concerto no.3 in Dm  - recommend records [by Joshua Bell
38. Taneyev Suite de Concerto Op.28 (for Violin)  - recommend records [by Ilya Gringolt
39. Paganini Violin Concerto no.4 in Dm + no.3,5,6  - recommend records [ by Salvatore Accardo
40. Spohr Violin Concerto no.11 in G (and others)  - recommend records [Hillary Hahn]  [Simome Lamsma]
41. Schoenberg Violin Concerto  - recommend records [by Hillary Hahn
42. Shostakovich Violin Concerto in Am  - recommend records [by Leila Josewicz] [Vikotria Mullova]
43. Szymanowski Violin Concerto No.1 and 2   - recommend records [by Frank Peter Zimmermann]
44. Rochberg Violin Concerto  - recommend records [Isaac Stern] [Peter Sheppard Skaerved
45. Penderecki Violin Concerto no.2  - recommend records [by Anne-Sophie Mutter
46. Shebalin Violin Concerto Op.21 (1940)  - recommend records [by Andrew Hardy
47. Britten Violin Concerto  - recommend records [by Janine Jansen] [James Ehnes] [Maxim Vengerov]
48. Arensky Violin Concerto in Am  - recommend records [by Ilya Gringolts]  [by Sergey Ostrovsky]
49. Berwald Violin Concerto in C#m  - recommend records [by Tobias Ringborg
50. Bloch Violin Concerto  - recommend records [by Elmar Oliveira] [by Yehudi Menuhin]
51. Dohnanyi Violin Concerto no.1 in Dm and no.2 in Cm - recommend records [by Michael Ludwig]
52. Haydn Violin Concerto in C, G, A - recommend records [by Federico Guglielmo and L'Arte dell'Arco period instruments] [by Giuliano Carmignola]
53. Karlowicz Violin Concerto in A - recommend records   [by Tasmin Little]
54. Lees Violin Concerto - recommend records   [by Elmar Oliveira
55. Martinu Violin Concerto no.1 and no.2 - recommend records   [by Isabelle Faust] [Josef Suk]
56. Moszkowski Violin Concerto in C - recommend records   [by Tasmin Little]
57. Robert Schumann Violin Concerto - recommend records   [by Anthony Marwood] [Henryk Szeryng]
58. Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Violin Concerto in Gm - recommend records [by Anthony Marwood]
59. Tor Aulin Violin Concerto no.3 and others - recommend records [by Tobias Ringborg and This]
60. Stravinsky Violin Concerto - recommend records   [by Kyung Hwa Chung] [by Anne-Sophie Mutter]
and more....
Vivaldi's Four Season - too many recordings...
Ole Bull Violin Concerto in A and Fantastico Concerto, [by Annar Folleso]
Hummel Violin Concerto in G [by James Ehnes]
Ysaye Violin Concerto no.8 and others [by Albrecht Laurent Breuninger]
Somervell Violin Concerto in Gm  [by Anthony Marwood]
Stanford Violin Concerto in D [by Anthony Marwood]

So, can you add what I missed out?

UPDATED 2013: - sure, there are still tons of Violin Concerto I only listen after I made up the list. Here the additional pieces:

Schubert Violin Konzerstuck in D  [by David Zinman]
John Adams Violin Concerto [by Chloe Hanslip]
Raff Violin Concerto no.1 and No.2 [by Michaela Paetsch] [Tobias Ringborg]
Pierre Rode Violin Concertos, neglected French master [Axel Strauss]
Rakov Violin Concerto No.1 (1944)  [by Andrew Hardy]
Kurt Atterberg Violin Concerto in Em Op.7 - another Sweden composer [by Ulf Wallin]
Ferdinand David Violin Concerto no.4 in E and no.5 in Dm [by Hagai Shaham]
d'Erlanger Violin Concerto in Dm Op.17 [by Philipe Grafin]
Cliffe Violin Concerto in Dm - all three composers from Hyperion Romantic Violin Concerto series
Rodolphe Kreutzer - the master himself, notable no.17,18 and 19  available in Naxos [by Axel Strauss]
Max Reger Violin Concerto in A [by Tanja Becker-Bender] [Ulf Wallin]
Egon Wellesz Violin Concerto Op.84 [by David Fr├╝hwirth]
Henze Violin Concerto No.1 and No.3 [by Peter Sheppard Skaerved]
Karol Lipinski Violin Concerto no.2 in D 'Military' as well his others [by Albrecht Breuninger]
Chevalier de Saint-Georges Joseph Boulogne, well known  Black French composer, produced dozen of violin concerto. [by Takako Nishizaki]

See also:
- Top 50 Most Recommended Cello Concertos
- Top 20 String Quartet Composers that You'll Need to Know, after you have listened all Haydns, Mozarts and Beethovens!


  1. How about Vaughan Williams' 'The Lark Ascending', and Ernest Moeran's Violin Concerto?

    1. That's right, Ralph Vaughan Williams's The Lark Ascending! How can I missed this wonderful pieces. +1 for Moeran's as well. thanks for reading!

  2. We're can I find the sheet music for the Vaughan Williams Violin Concerto?

    1. Here-,_Ralph)

  3. A great list. But how about Ligeti, Berg, Lutoslawski, Carter?

  4. you missed out Schumann's violin concerto in D minor you dildo

    1. I think you meant "dodo," not "dildo."

  5. Mendelssohn is in E minor.

  6. How about Castelnuovo-Tedesco Violin Concerto No. 2 "Profeti" (Jascha Heifetz) and Pfitzner Violin Concerto?

  7. George Dyson, recorded by Mordkovitch, who also recorded concertos by Bax, Bliss and Alwyn

  8. what about the conus concerto?

  9. What about the Mozart's G Major? No. 3?

  10. One of my favorite concertos is Paul Constantinescu Violin Concerto.
    part I:
    part II:
    part III:

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