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Sandor Vegh (1912 - 1997)

Hungarian Sándor Végh studied in Budapest with Hubay and Kodály and was a founder member of the Hungarian String Quartet which premiered Bartók’s String Quartet No. 5 in 1935. In 1940 he formed his own quartet which, as well as giving concerts until the mid-1970s, recorded complete cycles of Beethoven and Bartók quartets. He initiated the International Chamber Music Festival of Cervo in 1962 and formed the Sándor Végh Chamber Orchestra. In 1972 he helped establish the International Musicians’ Seminar at Prussia Cove, Cornwall, which enabled British musicians to deepen their understanding of European traditions and encouraged them in the belief that being a musician was a worthy occupation.

Solo appearances were never a large feature of Végh’s career but the few records he made in this capacity testify to his calibre as an interpreter. His unaccompanied Bach is perhaps rather slow and prone to heaviness, typical of many mid-twentieth-century players, but in Beethoven’s Sonata No. 4, Op. 23 (1982) this affords certainty and gravitas. His vibrato is reasonably controlled for the period, yet rather wide and powerful for those more in step with historical practices nowadays.



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