HÀ NỘI — Paris-based violinist Nguyễn Hữu Nguyên returns to play at a concert entitled Nguyễn Hữu Nguyên and Friends at French Cultural Centre (L’Espace) on February 3.
The concert will feature two works: Sonate for violin and piano and Souvenir de Florence by Cesar Franck and Tchaikovsky.
"The two pieces are representatives of French and Russian romantic music," said violinist Nguyên. "Tchaikovsky’s string sextet is not as popular as his ballets and symphonies but it is one of the best chamber music works. String musicians like to perform the master piece, which is also romantic".
Tchaikovsky wrote the piece from 1887 to 1890 when he was living in Florence. "At the moment I’m terribly pleased with myself," the composer told his younger brother in a letter written after he finished the piece.
Nguyên and his friends, including duo partner violinist Lê Minh Hiền; viola duet Phạm Vũ Thiên Bảo and Bùi Anh Sơn and cello duet Trần Thị Mơ and Ngô Hoàng Quân, will play the piece to create a charming aural space that combines a Russian snowy night with the gentle sunrise of Tuscany.
Violin duet Nguyên and Hiền will perform Sonate for violin and piano, one of the best-loved sonates.
"I like playing the sonate very much because it suits the violin," said Nguyên. "The work features gentle and sweet melodies which suit the Vietnamese soul. I have the chance to play this work and Symphony in a minor only, but I’m thrilled because he is one of my favourite composers. I love his music because it is full of expression but does not exaggerate his emotion and truthfulness".
Nguyên studied at the HCM City Conservatory of Music beginning at age 14. He is the winner of many contests such as first prize in the Việt Nam Concours Autumn, a national contest which recognises outstanding young Vietnamese musicians, and first prize at the Young Talent Violin Contest.
He was a top graduate of Boulogne Billancourt Conservatory. He later entered the Paris Conservatory and then won top prizes at competitions in France, such as first prize at a contest by Maurice Ravel Conservatory and FNAPEC Chamber Music Competition.
After completing his master’s degree in chamber music, Nguyên joined the French National Symphony Orchestra in 1999, and was named the third violin soloist in 2003. Nguyên and his younger violinist Nguyễn Khôi Nam are two of the orchestra’s four Asian members. — VNS