"Friedrich 'Fritz' Kreisler (1875-1962) was an Austrian-born violinist and composer. One of the most famous violin masters of his or any other day, he was known for his sweet tone and expressive phrasing. Like many great violinists of his generation, he produced a characteristic sound which was immediately recognizable as his own. Although he derived in many respects from the Franco-Belgian school, his style is nonetheless reminiscent of the gemütlich
(cozy) lifestyle of pre-war Vienna.
On recordings, Kreisler's style bears a resemblance to that of his younger contemporary Mischa Elman
, with a tendency toward expansive tempi, a continuous and varied vibrato, expressive phrasing, and a melodic approach to passage-work. Kreisler makes considerable use of portamento and rubato. The two violinists' approaches are less similar in big works of the standard repertoire, such as Felix Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto, than in smaller pieces.
A trip to a Kreisler concert is recounted in Siegfried Sassoon's 1928 autobiographical novel Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man.
Kreisler's emotionally expressive and accessible manner has been contrasted with Jascha Heifetz
's infallible technical precision, more emotionally detached, and with a less immediately colorful sound. It has been repeatedly observed that while Heifetz was the most conspicuously perfect violinist, Kreisler was the most beloved."