MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around 2023
Approaching 60,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all Bridge reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing



CD: AmazonUK AmazonUS
Download: Classicsonline

Kurt ROGER (1895-1966)
Chamber Music
Quintet for Clarinet, Two Violins, Viola, Cello op. 116 (1966) [21:22]
Piano Sonata op. 43 (1943) [18:22]
Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano, op. 77 (1953) [12:46]
Variations on an Irish Air for Flute, Cello and Piano op. 58 (1948) [22:57]
Robert Plane (clarinet); Emily Beynon (flute); Mia Cooper, Lucy Gould (violin); David Adams (viola); Alice Neary (cello); Benjamin Frith (piano)
rec. 9-10 March, 12-14 May and 1 June 2009, Champs Hill, Pulborough, West Sussex, England. DDD
NAXOS 8.572238 [75:28]

Experience Classicsonline

I have to confess to never having heard Kurt Roger’s music before this disc arrived on my doorstep. Born in Austria, he studied with Schoenberg - although was not a disciple of the twelve-tone system. He later taught at the Vienna Conservatoire for fifteen years, before emigrating to American during the Nazi regime.

His musical style is a curious combination of traditional and forward-looking; the opening movement of the Clarinet Quintet is a moderately-paced Allegro, which is stylistically reminiscent of a combination of Tchaikovsky and Mahler. The central movement is deeply romantic in essence and brings to mind early Schoenberg. The music is lyrical, expressive and slightly nostalgic. This work was written shortly before the composer’s death in 1966 and shows a maturity of style, with its elements fully integrated to create a convincing whole. The final movement has a distinctive flair, with fugal entries and dense polyphony. The playing is excellent throughout, with Robert Plane’s silky clarinet sound providing a wonderful additional timbre to the polished strings.

Written some twenty years earlier, while Roger was living in New York, the Piano Sonata is in a lighter style but is no less expressive. Beginning with a dramatic Toccata, the work incorporates styles from earlier eras, and Benjamin Frith performs with well-placed sensitivity. The central movement demonstrates an influence from Debussy and creates an atmospheric sound-world full of subtleties and nuances. The final movement, entitled Phantasmagoria is highly dramatic and captures the imagination, travelling through different fantasy worlds. This is a highly agreeable work which is delivered here with panache.

The Trio for Piano, Violin and Cello has a cheerful and somewhat triumphant opening movement, with strong melodic lines and an ebullient character. The central movement is more introspective and serious, with rich harmonies and at times an almost improvisatory feel. The short final movement returns to the jovial mood of the opening, and is more playful and full of charm.

The final work on the disc is the Variations on an Irish Air, which captivates from Emily Beynon’s stunning opening flute solo. There is a sense of nostalgia here, and the folk-like melody lends itself to Roger’s style. The well-known melody is subjected to various treatments, orchestrations and harmonisations throughout the work and has an element of fantasy in the composer’s explorations. The playing here is excellent throughout, giving a wonderful characterisation to the variations and a sound which is beautifully balanced between the instruments.

This CD presents Roger’s music in the best possible way, with committed performers who reach high standards throughout. This is an excellent introduction to his music, demonstrating the breadth of his talents as a composer and effectively conveying the emotional content of his works.

Carla Rees




















Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Past and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

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.