Ernst Schliephake Rachmaninoff’s G Minor Prelude for Violin
Editor Ernst Schliephake has brought one of the most popular preludes by Russian master Sergei Rachmaninoff to the violin. With its grand, magisterial character, this work represents the essence of the composer's piano writing. The G minor prelude in particular is one of the composer’s most beloved works—it is one of the most performed and recorded from the opus 23 set.
About Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in G Minor, Op. 23, No. 5 for Violin
From Ernst Scliephake’s notes about the score:
In the summer of 1993, I had the idea to transcribe Rachmaninoff's Prelude in G minor. I already knew the fantastic original version as performed by Alexis Weissenberg, Sviatoslav Richter or the master himself on Ampico Piano-roll. I was fascinated by this masterpiece and set about to bring it to violin, always with the incredible, virtuosic playing of Ruggiero Ricci in my mind. In 1993 Ricci was teaching at Salzburg, which was close to where I was living at the time, in Munich. It was Ruggiero's 75th birthday on July 24th that year, so the dedication was my special gift to him. I mailed the music to him and got a phone call three days later: "This is Ricci. I got your music—it's a good piece and I want to record it." He invited me to his home at Johann-Wolf-Straße 16A in Salzburg and showed me upstairs to his studio where he played a very private practice-version recorded on his Uher in slow motion. This was the beginning of a very personal friendship marked by frequent visits with him and his wife Julia. I was fortunate to remain very close to him until his passing.
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About the Editor – Ernst Schliephake
Ernst Schliephake was born May 23, 1962. After beginning violin lessons at the age of five, at just seven years old he already won his first competition. In 1973 he started playing the clarinet as his second instrument. Schliephake studied violin at Music Academy Detmold from 1979 to 1985 and served as the assistant to his professor Mr. Lukas David from 1983 to 1985. It was during this time that he also played the clarinet in concert with violinist Tibor Varga, performing the Brahms Clarinet Quintet 14 times.
In 1981 Schliephake played in a master class for Ruggiero Ricci, beginning a long friendship and collaboration that continued up to his passing on August 5th, 2012.
Schliephake has served as a violinist in the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Bavarian State Opera Orchestra and since 1989 has been the associate concertmaster of the Munich Symphony Orchestra. He has also edited numerous works for G. Henle Verlag.