Reviews

 In my opinion, your anthology is one of the most important recorded documents in violin history.

Stephen Shipps,
Professor of Violin,
Senior Advisor to the Dean For International Study,
University of Michigan

 

This incredible compiled document will be an exceedingly important resource for musicians in Canada and throughout the world.

David Visentin,
Associate Dean,
Glenn Gould School,
The Royal Conservatory of Toronto

 

This comprehensive retrospective, Staryk Anthology, is a unique and most welcome addition to our collections. It will be a wonderful resource for our students and faculty.

Kirsten Walsh,
Head Music Library,
The University of British Columbia

 

American Record Guide

May/June 2009
Elaine Fine
*shortened with the permission of the author.

…the 36 hours of music in this monumental collection has shown me that Steven Staryk is one of the finest musicians ever to set bow to string. Every disc of this 30-CD set is ample evidence that music lovers all over the world missed the chance to hear and know this extraordinary musician.

Even though Staryk made many LP recordings, only three have been reissued as CD’s. “Primas Stefan and his Royal Tziganes” is released for the first time on CD in this collection, and “Every Violinist’s Guide”, a mind-boggling collection of etudes for solo violin. This recording, the only one I know of its kind is reproduced in the context of a radio broadcast from WQXR. A CBC documentary about Staryk gives a great introduction to Staryk’s life and career, but it is the Mozart Concerto K216 that follows that makes it clear that listening to the 29 discs that follow would be like walking into a great museum with room after room of treasures that nobody, except the fortunate few who recognized their value, ever knew existed.

I am particularly happy that this anthology has Staryk-Perry readings from Beethoven to Bartok and Baroque music with Kenneth Gilbert. Staryk plays marvelous solo Bach and the first recording ever made of the Pisendel solo sonata. There are Haydn, Mozart, Shostakovich string quartets, and Mozart’s Symphonia Concertante with Oscar Shumsky playing viola. In addition to unusual pieces, some of them written for Staryk, the Anthology has a lot of chamber music. Brahms, Dvorak, Stravinsky, and some neglected pieces like the Piano Quartet by Richard Strauss and also a lot of concerto literature.

The Anthology would be particularly interesting for violin collectors because it is an opportunity to hear the very finest qualities of these (19) great instruments being played here as well as it is humanly possible to play them. I did find myself intoxicated.

Violinists of his calibre (and I can count those among the living on one hand) will find, after they get over their initial amazement, that this virtuosity is not the kind that is off-putting. String players (like me) will find that their own playing can improve simply by listening to Staryk play. His musicianship always directs the listener to the beauty of the music, making even the most technical of etudes sound like stunningly-beautiful pieces for solo violin. And wait until you hear what he does with Mozart!

 


Photo courtesy of Lois Siegel

Marketwire News Release

May 14, 2009

OTTAWA, ONTARIO — Library and Archives Canada is pleased to announce the acquisition of The Staryk Anthology (1952-2003), a 30 CD box set of the works of internationally renowned violin virtuoso Steven Staryk.

“It is a great honour to add this wonderful collection from one of the greatest violinists of our generation to our collection. Mr. Staryk is one of the most recorded classical Canadian musicians to date and his music adds to the vast majority of music to be enjoyed by all Canadians” said Chantal Marin-Comeau, Director of the Aquisitions Division at Library and Archives Canada, as she accepted the donation from Mr. Staryk in a private ceremony held at 395 Wellington Street.

 


American String Teacher

November 2009
*shortened with permission of the author.

Great playing, and lots of it in an über-collection spanning more than 50 years of music-making. His new retrospective is titanicin every respect. 30 CD’s, 246 works, 66 live performances, 20 orchestras, and 35 conductors. Concertos include those by Mozart, Walton, Paganini, Prokofiev, Vivaldi, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Tschaikovsky, Glazunov, Wieniawski, Shostakovich, Telemann and Bach. There are rarely-heard works by Pergolesi, Pisendel, Geminiani, Stamitz and works difficult or impossible to find from any other violinist.

There is a wealth of material including etudes, caprices, transcriptions and originals. Of interest to orchestral musicians (from the “King of concertmasters” — The Strad, London) will be disc 14, which contains major concertmaster solos. Showpieces abound, with idioms from jazz to Gypsy. Also of interest are works by 14 Canadian composers — a fascinating Canadian broadcasting profile about Staryk (disc 1), a number of world-premiere performances, and many many fine chamber works.

Instrument aficionados will marvel at the instruments used by Staryk. Of the 40 Strads and 26 Del Gesus Staryk played (on loan, trial or possessed) during his career, 19 appear in the set. These and many other fine instruments are listed for all of the tracks. A close inspection of Staryk’s magnum opus leads to only one question: when did this guy sleep?

S.C.

 

Diapason Magazine (France)

September 2013