Search MusicWeb Here


selling Internationaly

aSymphonies 1 and 5 £9.00 post free

See also

Symphonies 2 and 3

Vision of Judgement £9 post free

Newest Releases

Symphonies 4&5 £9 post free

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


AmazonUK   AmazonUS

Gruss aus Baden-Baden!
Miloslaw KOENNEMANN (1826-1890)

Der Fremersberg (1853)
Jacques OFFENBACH (1819-1880)

La Princesse de Trébizonde – overture (1869)
Konradin KREUTZER (1780-1849)

Das Nachtlager von Grenada – overture (1834)
Jean-Baptiste ARBEN (1825-1889)

Fantasie and Variations on Carnival of Venice*
Johann STRAUSS II (1825-1899)

Ballsträusschen Op.380 (1878)
Lob der Frauen Op.315 (1866-67)
Charles GOUNOD (1818-1893)

La colombe – entr’acte (1860)
Matthias Höfs (trumpet)*
Baden-Baden Philharmonic Orchestra/Werner Stiefel
Recorded in the Kurhaus Baden-Baden, 1994 (Offenbach, Gounod), 1995 (Koennemann, Kreutzer, Arban) and 2003 (Strauss)


Here’s a postcard from that august nineteenth century watering hole and spa, Baden-Baden. Not that it lacks visitors now but its heyday was in the Imperial splendour of the mid-century when artists, writers, composers and royalty flocked to spend a restful idyll there. Amongst them was the itinerant Mark Twain whose witty later recollections of a performance he heard of Koennemann’s Der Fremersberg are reprinted. This was a work inspired by the surrounding countryside and written by the accomplished Prague-born band conductor soon after he made Baden-Baden his home. Stirring and full of nature depiction its centrepiece is a percussion and brass inspired storm of mountain top shaking vehemence. There’s plenty of frolicsome writing as well as some Rossininian sparkle, topped by a stirring finale. No wonder Twain was impressed.

The Offenbach is a vigorous overture, though one in this performance where the brass tends to overbalance the strings and the Kreutzer is a Schumannesque overture to his 1834 opera Das Nachtlager von Grenada. We also have a spa band favourite, the Fantasie and Variations on Carnival of Venice by Jean-Baptiste Arban, a famous trumpet showpiece full of virtuosic flight. It’s played here by Matthias Höfs whose tonguing is formidable and nonchalant. As a pendant there is a brace of Strauss – the Lob der Frauen is particularly full of rhythmic vivacity – and to finish we have a restful encore, Gounod’s entr’acte to La colombe (1860) which comes as balm after the loquacious vivacity earlier on.

Notes are good. The performances have apparently been available on CD locally, which I assume mean limited distribution by the orchestra in Baden-Baden – but this is the first time they have received international distribution. All very competently done by Sterling.

Jonathan Woolf

Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Cameo Classics
Prima voce
Red Priest
Toccata Classics

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Editor in Chief
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Return to Index

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.