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German Flute Concertos
Peter von WINTER (1754-1825)
Flute Concerto No. 2 in D minor [23:29]
Flute Concerto No. 1 in D minor [19:49]
Franz LACHNER (1803 - 1890)
Flute Concerto in D minor [15:58]
Antonio ROSETTI (c1750 - 1792)
Flute Concerto in E flat major [20:16]
Bruno Meier (flute)
Jaroslav Tuma (harpsichord)
Prague Chamber Orchestra
rec. 20-27 September 2007, Arco Diva, Domovina, Prague. DDD
NAXOS 8.570593 [80:04]
Experience Classicsonline

This disc contains a selection of previously un-recorded and mostly unpublished flute concertos from the classical and romantic eras, heard in versions prepared by flute player Bruno Meier.

The composer of the first two pieces, Peter von Winter, was born in Germany and was a contemporary of Mozart. The composers knew each other but did not get on. Winter was a violinist in the Mannheim orchestra and later in Munich, where he became Kapellmeister at the court chapel. He toured Europe, studied with Salieri in Vienna and composed operas, wind concerti, a Requiem and other instrumental works. His flute concertos were composed for Johann Nepomuk Capeller, who was the flute player in the Munch Court Orchestra and teacher of Theobald Boehm, the creator of the modern-system flute. The music is highly enjoyable, with virtuoso displays for the soloist combined with classical poise and elegance. The second concerto, heard first on this recording, is in traditional three movement form, with a majestic opening movement and lyrical slow movement. The final movement is a folk-inspired Polacca with a dance feel, repeated rhythmic patterns and a rondo structure. The first concerto, also in the key of D minor, is less traditionally structured, and is in one movement with four sections. Von Winter uses similar melodic material through the sections and although this is a charming work it does not have the same sense of compositional maturity as the second concerto. Meier plays his own cadenzas, which are well written and in keeping with the style of the music, and the soloist is impressive throughout the works, sensitively accompanied by the Prague Chamber Orchestra.

Franz Lachner’s concerto is from the Romantic era, and makes use of a bigger orchestra than Peter von Winter. Lachner grew up in Munich and studied in Vienna, where he became associated with Schubert and met Beethoven. He became Kappellmeister for opera at the Kärntnertortheater at the age of 25 and went on to have an impressive career as both a conductor and composer. His flute concerto is thought to have been composed in 1832, and opens with a strong orchestral tutti, making use of maestoso dotted rhythms and a dark minor key tonality. Another single movement work, this has more of a sense of unity that Winter’s first concerto and possess a strong musical identity, which seems to hold the influence of both Haydn and Schubert, combining Romantic lyricism with a more traditional harmonic language.

The final work on the disc is Antonio Rosetti’s E flat major concerto, a three movement work with the added inclusion of the harpsichord creating variety in the orchestral sound. Published in 1782, it is thought to have been composed before 1778. A later version for horn also exists. This version has been prepared for Meier, with his own cadenzas and ornamentations. This is an enjoyable and well constructed work, with its major key providing contrast on this recording. The expressive slow movement is particularly enjoyable, followed by a charming light-hearted finale.

Bruno Meier is to be congratulated both on his work researching this repertoire and reviving it. His playing is excellent throughout, with well considered phrasing and an enjoyable tone. He is highly convincing as soloist and demonstrates an understanding of the composers’ intentions. The Prague Chamber Orchestra provides a well balanced orchestral accompaniment and maintains the quality heard in the soloist’s playing. Highly enjoyable.

Carla Rees 

 


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