Reviews

Due to the copyright restrictions in Germany and Switzerland these are only a few reviews which we are explicitly allowed to use. Unfortunately, for this reason a large number of press reviews may not be used at the moment.

  • Fanfare - CD Biber

  • „At this point, there are almost as many recordings of H.I.F. von Biber’s Mystery or Rosary sonatas as there are ways of playing them. [...] Twenty years on, the situation couldn’t be more evolved, but amidst the thick and fast immersion, from the ever reliable Aeolus label, comes that of Helene Schmitt to muddy the waters and then to clean them. [...] Listen to her ravishing vibrato, changing with the finest nuance and tempo gradations, as she sustains a pitch [...]. Her treatment of the Passacaglia is similarly paced, maximizing an otherworldly quality but maintaining a wonderfully human dramatic arc over ten and a half minutes. When she reaches that beautiful Picardy third, there is a sense not only of journey but of return, as Schmitt mirrors and counteracts the meditative and anticipatory qualities of her first sonata. The scordatura sonatas are played with equal aplomb. [...] There are now many recordings of these sonatas, but this one has the feel of an event and, along with the Bach organ works series on Silbermann organs and Bob van Asperen’s Froberger edition, Schmitt’s Biber must be one of the crown jewels in Aeolus’ excellent catalog.” (Marc Medwin, May 2017)

  • Pizzicato - CD Biber

  • “Here we have another recording of Biber’s Rosary Sonatas which belongs to the best available. Hélène Schmitt and her ensemble deliver a sonorous, colourful and expressive performance.” (Uwe Krusch, 20.12.16)

  • MusicWeb International - CD Biber

  • “Hélène Schmitt has a well established reputation as a fine violinist in the Early Music scene, and she shines in this immaculately recorded production. This version is relatively intimate, with plenty of detail on the soloist and basso continuo accompaniment in its various colourful guises. [...] I have greatly enjoyed Hélène Schmitt’s recording and with its bright, airy sound and honest musicianship this is a recording which should attract a wide following. [...] Where Hélène Schmitt has the advantage is in the kind of pure musicality which keeps its affect in proportion, offering up and revealing its secrets over the entire span of the cycle of sonatas and in repeated listening. Right down to the final Passacaglia this is a performance which has its own atmosphere, and I’ve found it exerts an increasing magnetism over time, and you need to allow it the space to take effect.” (Dominy Clements)

  • Fanfare - CD Matteis

  • “Schmitt and the ensemble play the music with piquant sensitivity to the opportunities it affords for timbral nuance. […] She plays with a verve and dash that makes the ayrs ingratiating, even on first hearing. […] Strongly recommended.”

  • The Strad - CD Matteis

  • “She plays her own suite selections with flair and musicality, her versatility ranging from a passionate 'Sarabanda amorosa' through quasi-improvisatory preludes to energetic jigs, clearly articulated fugues, incisively rhythmic dances, deftly ornamented adagios, sharply charac¬terized divisions and quasi pantomime bizarreries over a ground bass. She is appropriately extrovert in realising her vision, incorporating occasional portamentos and fairly extreme vibrato breadth and speed into her expressive vocabulary. Especially outstanding is her technically assured and thoughtfully shaped reading of Matteis’s 'Passaggio rotto, Andamento veloce e Fantasia' for solo violin.”

  • The Independent on Sunday - CD Schmelzer

  • “Hélène Schmitt’s beautifully executed recital of works from Schmelzer’s 1664 ‘Sonatae unarum fidium’ reveals a voice as dramatic, distinctive and demanding as that of his pupil [Biber] Schmitt’s engaged bowing is beautifully supported by a continuo sextion of cello, chitarrone, and claviorganum.”

  • The Irish Times - CD Schmelzer

  • “French violinist Hélène Schmitt delivers Schmelzer's music with a strong sense of individual rhetoric, and the recording, […] is immediate and sensual

  • The Sunday Times - CD Schmelzer

  • “Hélène Schmitt’s playing combines warmth with consummate athleticism […].”

  • The Strad - CD Carbonelli

  • “These are enjoyable performances, thoughtfully executed with idiomatic elegance and just right degree of virtuosity. One cannot but admire the strong individual character of Hélène Schmitt’s playing […]. She enlivens Carbonelli’s idiom with affection and rhythmic sensibility, and her musical phrasing and persuasive rhetoric combine to project the very essence of the music.”