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Franz WERTHMÜLLER (1769-1841)
Sonate A-Dur/A major op.17

1 Allegro [3:04]
2 Lento [5:56]
3 Rondo-Presto [3:06]
Fernando SOR (1778-1839)
Twelve Studies

4 B flat major op.60.23 [1:05]
5 A minor 0p.35.5 [0:58]
6 B minor op.31.18 [1:16]
7 C major op.31.13 [1:25]
8 D minor op.35.11 [0:47]
9 E minor op.60.22 [1:24]
10 C sharp major op.35.19 [1:09]
11 E minor op.60.14 [1:23]
12 E minor op. 35.18 [1:03]
13 F major op.35.12 [1:11]
14 A minor op.60.18 [1:10]
15 D major op.29.21 [1:33]
Heinrich MARSCHNER (1795-1861)
Six Bagatellen from opus 4

16 Allegreto E-Dur [1:46]
17 Andantino A minor [1:27]
18 Risoluto A major [1:27]
19 Allegreto A major [ 1:17]
20 Un poco Allegreto G major[2:47]
21 Moderato ma non trappo F major [1:24]
Fernando SOR

Nine Menuets (22 G sharp minor op.11.2 [1:42]; 23 F major op.11.10 [1:52]; 24 E minor op.11.9 [1:40]; 25 A major op.11.6 [2:01]; 26 C major op.5.3/4 [4:22]; 27 A minor op.11.7 [1:54]; 28 G major op.11.3 [2:15]; 29 B flat major op.24.8 [1:14]; 30 F major op.24.7/6 [2:22])
31 Variations on Nel cor piú non mi sento op.16 [9:13]
32 Variations on a theme by Mozart op.9 [7:29]
Tilman Hoppstock (guitar)
Recorded May 1985 [31], Autumn1995-Spring 1996 [1-30], Sept 2001 [32].
CHRISTOPHORUS CHE 0118-2 [72:57]


 

This new release by guitarist Tilman Hoppstock comprises the work of three different composers each of whom lived from the latter part of the 18th century to the middle of the 19th century.

Franz Werthmuller (1769-1841) is not a name associated with the guitar or indeed the classical music world at large. The Sonata in A Major presented here is believed to have originally been for piano and subsequently transcribed for the guitar by Pfeifer. This is the first time it has appeared on a commercial recording

In contrast the six Bagatelles from Opus 4 are original compositions for guitar by Heinrich Marschner (1795-1861). They are not part of familiar guitar repertoire.

Fernando Sor (1778-1839) was the foremost guitarist/composer of his time. His works include songs, masses,operas, diverse chamber works and above all a large body of works for the guitar. Of particular interest to guitarists are his studies that have challenging technical development components often combined with exquisite musical content. The best rank with the equivalent works of Chopin and Scarlatti. Twelve studies and nine minuets for guitar are included in the programme.

Tilman Hoppstock. (b.Germany 1961) is a very good guitarist with excellent credentials. A prolific recording artist, Mr Hoppstock has more than twenty items in his discography. The programme from this disc may lead one to the conclusion that he is running out of material to record.

Given the compositional nature of the programme, it is understandable why Francisco Tarrega made extensive arrangements for guitar of piano music by the famous composers; why Andres Segovia also made extensive transcriptions and arrangements of music from other instruments and appealed to composers of his day to write originals works for the guitar. The task still incomplete, Segovia’s successor Julian Bream also pursued contemporary composers to write original compositions for the guitar and when listening to such masterpieces as Nocturnal Op.70 by Benjamin Britten, we concluded with magnificent success.

While Mr Hoppstock gets full marks for thematic consistency, as a collection of 32 tracks this programme is rather lack-lustre. There are fine moments in some pieces eg Werthmüller’s Ronda and the Sor studies [10] and minuets [23] but these are offset by too much of "more of the same" Of all the items presented, several combined with works of greater depth and overall variety-appeal would place them in a different light, lifting the pall of dullness that suffocates this recording.

This new release on the Christophorus label will have special appeal to students of the guitar who wish to listen to excellent renditions of selected studies and minuets by Fernando Sor. For reasons primarily of programming, aficionados at large it will not see it as a candidate for "guitar disc of the year."

Zane Turner



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