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Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791)
Trio Sonata for flute, viola and harp (arr. Dezso d’Antalffy-Zsiross from Duo for violin and viola in G Major KV423 (1783)) [14:30]
Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918)

Sonata for flute, viola and harp (1915) [17:53]
André JOLIVET (1905-1974)
Petite Suite for flute, viola and harp (1941) [11:44]
Ludwig Van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
Serenade for flute, viola and harp (arr. Ami Maayani, 1936 from Serenade for flute, violin and viola in D major, Op. 25 (1801)) [20:12]
Bohemia Luxembourg Trio: (Carlo Jans (flute); Jitka Hosprová (viola); Kateřina Englichová (harp))
rec. 27 February, 1-2 March 2006, Domovina Studio, Prague, Czech Republic. DDD
ARCODIVA UP 0088-2 131 [64:42]



ArcoDiva, the Prague based record company, present an attractive new release of music for flute, viola and harp. The label tends to specialise in Czech music but as you can see exceptions are made.

The ‘Bohemia Luxembourg Trio’ is a name that doesn’t exactly trip off the tongue. Its members are Czech (Bohemia), Hosprová and Englichová with flautist Jans who hails from Luxembourg.

The first work on the release is an arrangement of Mozart’s Duo for violin and viola in G Major, KV423 from Salzburg in 1783. The appealing three movement work opens with a good humoured Allegro followed by a warmly congenial Adagio. A touch more vivacity from the players would have helped in the closing movement Rondo.

Composed in 1915 Debussy’s Sonata for flute, viola and harp is cast in three movements. It been described by David Ewen as, "infused with Mediterranean colour and warmth". The flowing lyricism of the opening Pastorale is evocative of waking up from a restful sleep to a bright sunny morning. The music in the central Interlude meanders before resting for welcome refreshment and the Finale expresses a wide range of emotions.


Jolivet’s Petite Suite was written in 1941. In the booklet notes Dita Hradecka (trans. Karel Janovicky) explains, "The Suite consists of five short ‘sound pictures’, giving an impression of both a certain archaism and of exoticism…" In this highly engaging work I especially enjoyed the restive Prelude. I experienced the Allant as if the composer was pining for a loved one.

Beethoven’s Serenade Op. 25 from 1801 is presented here in Ami Maayani’s arrangement made in 1936. In seven short movements the Serenade is described in the booklet notes as, "a little work of carefree grace…" The highlights are the bright and breezy opening movement; the attractive Andante con variazioni with its feeling that romance is in the air and the bold and restless final Allegro.

Throughout the recording flautist Carlo Jans is placed the furthest forward in the recording balance and it is hard not to be impressed with his silvery tone. Star performer Hosprová impresses strongly with the richly mellow timbre of her viola and harpist Englichová performs with lyrical sensitivity. Especially impressive is the trio’s unity of ensemble. Recorded in the Domovina Studio in Prague in 2006 the sound quality is satisfactory, although, the prominent flute is very sharp in the forte passages.

I note that the trio have another release of concertante works by Jindřich Feld, Zdeněk Lukáš and Viktor Kalabis. They are recorded with the Prague Chamber Orchestra under Antonín Hradil. The sessions took place in Prague in 2006 and the disc is available on ArcoDiva UP 0097-2 131. review

Returning to the present release. this is quality music in a lighter vein. It is perfect for relaxing and for late night listening. A fascinating disc that will undoubtedly appeal to a wide range of listeners.

Michael Cookson

 


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