CD and Other Review

Review: The Chopin Album (Sol Gabetta, Bertrand Chamayou)

★★★★☆ A title like The Chopin Album, might lead you to expect a disc from the latest pianistic talent, but happily on this occasion it’s a collection of repertoire for cello and piano duo from close friends, cellist Sol Gabetta and pianist Bertrand Chamayou. The stunning centrepiece is the significant Cello Sonata in G Minor. The complexity of the first movement alone is a marvel, and it’s a shame the piece isn’t more widely known. Gabetta talks about approaching Chopin as a bel canto composer, who was always aware of a ‘vocal’ line in the music. It’s a fitting analogy and Chamayou and Gabetta show great sensitivity towards the primary melody, while still uncovering Chopin’s rich polyphony. The Largo movement is achingly beautiful, without becoming too overly sentimental.  The militaristic Polonaise Brilliante provides both Chamayou and Gabetta with plenty of virtuosic scope and both performers relish the opportunity. The remainder of the album serves as a tribute to the friendship between Chopin and respected cellist Auguste-Joseph Franchomme. The two men co-authored the Grand Duo Concertant and worked independently on arrangements and transcriptions of Chopin’s music. An original work of Franchomme’s is included on the album, the Nocturne for Cello and…

July 24, 2015
CD and Other Review

Review: Mozart: Divertimenti (Scottish Chamber Orchestra)

Editor’s Choice: Chamber, July 2015  ★★★★★ Although this is a debut recording by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists, the six players each boast impressive individual track records. As part of the SCO itself, they previously made a recording of wind concerti by Weber, which in turn inspired the creation of the ensemble on this disc.  As the liner notes point out, throughout Mozart’s life, one constant was that he always wrote music for entertainment. Whether that music was designed to be played at parties or banquets, at evenings out or formal ceremonies, it’s abundantly clear that Mozart took all this good-natured music very seriously. “It’s abundantly clear that Mozart took all this good-natured music very seriously” The recording opens with the Serenade in E Flat, K375. There’s a well-known letter to his father in which Mozart describes his delight at discovering the musicians performing the work beneath his window as a surprise one evening. Similarly, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists present us as listeners with a pleasant surprise, as they (somewhat unusually) play the original version of this work for pairs of clarinets, horns and bassoons. Normally, the Serenade in E Flat features a pair of oboes as…

July 21, 2015

Singing in Symphony

Mark Isaacs reveals how, in his imaginative new chamber symphony, it will be the voice that rocks the cradle. Continue reading Get unlimited digital access from $3 per month Subscribe Already a subscriber? Log in

July 17, 2015