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London 1900s

The Times could be critical of violinists. Three days after the 8 May review of Huberman, Kubelik was criticized for his phrasing and interpretation.

The Times, 20 Oct 1904


Herr Huberman, a violinist who came out as a prodigy some years back, gave the first of two recitals yesterday afternoon at St. James's-hall. He is undoubtedly an accomplished performer, and, in spite of certain limitations, created a favourable impression. His technique, although of an advanced order, cannot be said to be perfect; there were occasional lapses of intonation; yet his staccato playing is admirable, and certain passages in thirds came out as clearly as could be wished, while his tone is pure and even, but for one or two moments of roughness, as though quality was being sacrificed to volume. His interpretation of the Kreutzer sonata was a mixture of breadth and sentimentality; the andante movement was taken too slowly; but the finale, during which he had the ill-luck to break his E string, went with excellent spirit. He also played Raff's suite, op. 180, the Schubert-Wilhelmj "Ave Maria," and a mazurka by Kontski. Herr Richard Singer was a sympathetic accompanist, and, besides playing the piano part of the sonata, which he did in good style, also gave the Bach-Busoni "Toccata and Fugue" in D minor, this perhaps with an over-amount of force.

The Times, 8 May 1905

Herr Huberman's orchestral concert in the Queen's-hall was a great success on Saturday. He is one of the few violinists of the younger generation who are justified in regarding with complete and genuine indifference the transitory successes made by the crowd of brilliant players, or the means that many of them take to procure notoriety. Herr Huberman has attained to the position of a real artist, in whom technical skill, intellectual grasp, and emotional temperament exist side by side and are held in precisely the right relation to each other. No one could possibly call him cold on the one hand or sentimental on the other; his playing of the Beethoven concerto was such as to make the hearer forget the individual in the beauty of the work; it was literally an interpretation, and a remarkbly fine one. Saint-Säens's concerto in B minor and Tchaikovsky's "Souvenir d'un lieu cher" were the other violin solos, and both were admirably played. The Queen's-hall Orchestra, under Mr. Wood's direction, played the accompaniments very well, and opened the concert with the overture to Hänsel und Gretel. Herr Richard Singer, a pianist of very considerable ability, played Liszt's second concerto in A with due vigour and brilliance.

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