One of the most grown-up review sites around

2019
51,800 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here

     
  
 

 

International mailing


  Founder: Len Mullenger             Editor in Chief: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider


Yes we are selling
Acte Prealable again!
£11 post-free


we also sell Skarbo

and Oboe Classics


TROUBADISC

with Eggebrecht we get all the excitement we can handle

Book 1 Book 2 Book3
Mota The Triptych: -Website

Asmik Grigorian

Breathtaking Performance
controversial staging
Review Westbrook
Review Hedley
Every lover of Salome should see this recording
Mullenger interpretation

Vraiment magnifique!


Quite splendid


Winning performances


Mahler Symphony 8
a magnificent disc


a huge talent


A wonderful disc


Weinberg Symphonies 2 & 21
A handsome tribute!


Roth’s finest Mahler yet


Mahler 9 Blomstedt
Distinguished performance

 


Support us financially by purchasing this from

The Jupiter Project: Mozart in the nineteenth-century drawing room
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791)
Die Zauberflöte, K620: Overture (arr. Johann Nepomuk Hummel) [6:52]
Piano Concerto No.21 in C, ‘Munich version’, K467 (arr. Johann Baptist Cramer, 1836) [28:42]
Le Nozze di Figaro, K492: Overture (arr. Hummel) [4:47]
Symphony No.41 in C, K551 ‘Jupiter’ (arr. Muzio Clementi, 1822) [39:30]
Bonus Download Tracks:
Piano Concerto No 21 in C ‘London version’, K467 (arr. Cramer) [28:14]
David Owen Norris (piano)
Katy Bircher (flute)
Caroline Balding (violin)
Andrew Skidmore (cello)
rec. 2018, Cooper Hall, Frome, UK.
Reviewed as 24/96 download with pdf booklet from hyperion-records.co.uk.
HYPERION CDA68234 [79:49 (CD), 108:05 (download)]

This recording arose from the research project ‘Jupiter: Mozart in the nineteenth-century drawing room’, led by Professors Mark Everist and David Owen Norris at the University of Southampton, and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Mozart arranged some of his own piano concertos for domestic performance and there are several recordings of Nos. 11-14 in this format. There are also recordings of chamber arrangements of some of the other concertos by other composers, but this is, to the best of my knowledge, the most complete album of its kind.

Naxos have recorded Alon Goldstein with the augmented Fine Arts Quartet in Piano Concertos Nos. 20. K466 and 21, K467 (8.573398). I thought that these small-scale arrangements would make a fine addition to a Mozart library which also contains the originals – review – but Jens F Laursen was far less impressed – review. Whatever else you may think of that Naxos CD, it’s rather short value, which certainly cannot be said of the new Hyperion, especially if you choose the download version, available in 16-bit, 24/96 and 24/192 formats.

Of course, a great deal is lost in these domestic arrangements. At the very start of the first track, the mighty chords which summon our attention in the Zauberflöte Overture sound rather like St Paul’s proverbial tinkling cymbal, but much is gained, too, in hearing details which can be missed in a full-blown orchestral recording.

Hummel’s arrangement of the Figaro Overture comes out rather better, with the scurrying violin passages sounding well under David Owen Norris’s fingers on the piano. It’s a Broadwood instrument from 1826, sounding more like a fortepiano than the modern grand and ideal for the music.

Cramer’s arrangements of K467 were never published, but Professor Owen Norris has squirreled out a three-stave manuscript of the parts for what he calls the ‘Jupiter’ ensemble of flute, violin and cello. You need to download the album to enjoy the 1827 ‘London’ version and compare it with the 1836 ‘Munich’ version, which is included in both formats. Those who purchase the CD can download the bonus tracks from Hyperion free of charge.

I enjoyed hearing these two versions of the so-called ‘Elvira Madigan’ concerto, very soon after praising the recent Chandos recording of K466 and K467 from Jean-Efflam Bavouzet and the Manchester Camerata (CHAN20083). I was far from alone in recommending the Chandos, but the new Hyperion makes for a most interesting and enjoyable pendant. Having written that I’m now likely to choose the Bavouzet recording above my earlier favourites – review – I now expect to turn to Hyperion for K467 in preference to the Naxos recording1. The slow movement, as used in the film, has a delicacy in this account which achieves its effect without any trace of undue sensibility, at least as well as my favourite period-instrument recording from Ronald Brautigam (fortepiano) and the Kölner Akademie (Nos. 14 and 21: BIS-2054, SACD or download from eclassical.com). At 7:30 in both versions on Hyperion it’s taken more slowly than by Bavouzet and much more slowly than by Brautigam – more slowly even than by Géza Anda in 1961 (DG, the recording used for the film) – but without any sense of dragging the music out.  With all the laughter of Mozart’s music captured in the rondo finale, the album is worth the asking price for these two performances alone. If the Naxos recording casts an interesting sidelight on familiar music, the new Hyperion is rather more.

Inevitably, the Clementi arrangement of Mozart’s grandest symphony, the Jupiter, though it lends its name to the whole project, suffers some diminution of its grandeur. Though it’s surprisingly less diminished than the Zauberflöte Overture, I’m not sure that I shall want to listen to this part of the recording too often. The symphony as a cut-down piano concerto effectively becomes a different work, though one that's enjoyable in its own right.

Writing before the release of the recording, I’m not sure which track Hyperion will offer as a sampler, but they always offer short previews of each track from their website and I suggest that you try those of the symphony to make your own decision. It’s not all loss, however – as with the other music here it’s possible to hear inner details which are easily lost in full-scale performances. And, along with the rest of the programme, I cannot imagine a better realisation of the arrangement.

It’s become almost routine for me to have to warn readers of huge variations in pricing policy; in this case, the dealer price for the CD varies from £12.75, reduced to £11.50, to £17.17.  The Hyperion downloads range from £8.99 (16-bit) via £13.50 (24/96) to £15.75 (24/192).  Be warned that the 24/192 is a very large file.  The CD direct from Hyperion costs £10.50.

Given clear recording to complement the performances and a very informative set of notes from David Owen Norris and Mark Everist, this is a fascinating release. I shall certainly be returning to these arrangements of K467 and the Figaro Overture, perhaps less often to the other works, but it’s all very well done.

1 See also Summer 2019/1 for the budget-price download of Richard Goode’s Nonesuch recording of Nos. 18 and 20.

Brian Wilson



We are currently offering in excess of 51,800 reviews


Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and keep us afloat

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Nimbus Podcast


Obtain 10% discount



Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Postmaster
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger