“British violinist Daniel Hope is undoubtedly a rising star in the musical firmament."
In 1967 Yehudi Menuhin and Ravi Shankar played a series of concerts together incorporating works that Shankar had composed for sitar and violin - Raga Piloo and Swara-Kakali. Both works follow the principles of Indian music to the letter, but at the same time integrate the Western classical violin in a subtle and masterful way. Menuhin once said of listening to Shankar perform that it was "an experience more magical than almost any in the world. One is in the presence of creation."
Menuhin and Shankar recorded the works on a ground-breaking and highly successful LP which Daniel Hope grew up listening to. When Hope decided that he wanted to record these works, he approached Shankar who gave the violinist his blessing and suggested his star protégé, Gaurav Mazumdar, should play the sitar part. Using notes made during the original recording session that Menuhin had given Hope (whose mother was the great pedagogue's manager), the two young musicians faithfully reconstructed the works by ear. It is with these works by Shankar that Hope begins and ends this East Meets West story which takes the audience on a fascinating journey through 20th century violin music and the interplay between different musical cultures.
From the study of linguistics we know that Gypsies were originally from North Central India. Their migration started around 300BC when they moved to North Western India; they then moved to Persia, and from there to Europe. The term "Gypsy" emerged in the 1400s when these dark-skinned strangers were thought to come from Egypt. Maurice Ravel's Tzigane (which means 'Gypsy') was written in 1924 for the Hungarian violinist Jelly d'Arányi. Composed as a concert rhapsody for violin and piano-luthéal* (and for which the luthéal was first used in public), Tzigane is loosely modelled on Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies, and in accordance with the work's title Ravel uses scales in the Gypsy style thus adding to the impression of ethnic authenticity. What often seems like Gypsy parlando is actually the result of strictly constricted design.
"Daniel Hope brought new meaning to the saying ‘electrically charged." The Guardian