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The Art Of The Viola / Koll, Inui, Schmidl, Et Al

Release Date: 03/22/2005 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8557606   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Paul HindemithLudwig van BeethovenRobert SchumannBenjamin Britten
Performer:  Heinrich KollMadoka InuiMilan KaranovicPeter Schmidl
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 5 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Fluent and elegant, and very pleasing.

All the performers here are members of the Vienna Philharmonic under which rubric the series is presented as a series title: Philharmonic Soloists. The orchestra’s principal violist is Heinrich Koll and he is featured in this disc devoted to wide ranging repertoire which democratically includes Schumann’s Märchenerzählungen.

As I listened to the Handel-Halvorsen I noted down a few words; elegant, precise, nuanced, tactful and discreet were some. Koll and his violinist daughter Alexandra play with taste and clarity. The pert pizzicato passage is well judged. There’s something missing though. It’s all just a little too neat and there are touches of
Read more mannerism. Is the swell on the last note justified?

Hindemith’s Sonata does sound a bit bluff and under-inflected after the generous lyricism of the classic Primrose/Sanromá (on Biddulph). Koll’s greater linearity means that there are fewer overt contrasts. This terser approach is exacerbated by a fastish vibrato. For my own taste I regret a lack of the greater expressive magnitude of the older pairing, though I happily concede it’s a performance predicated on logic and proficiency. Primrose was always laudatory of a performance he gave with Britten of Lachrymae in which he admired what was between the cracks as it were, what wasn’t notated. It’s a moving but difficult work to get across, and its culminatory unfolding of Dowland’s song must emerge naturally from within the fabric of the writing. This one is finely textured and convincing, though without quite the last ounce of tonal fibre.

No complaints about the Beethoven where the playing is genial, the ensemble solid, and the sonority warm and rich. In the Schumann Koll is joined by Madoka Inui and the eminent figure of Peter Schmidl. These three experienced plays have an excellent rapport. Balances are finely judged; dynamics are excellent. The ethos is mellifluous and affectionate. Inui plays a full part, ensuring rhythmic snap when required, and strong chording elsewhere. This is all fluent and elegant, and very pleasing.

-- Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International 
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Works on This Recording

Sonata for Viola and Piano in F major, Op. 11 no 4 by Paul Hindemith
Performer:  Heinrich Koll (Viola), Madoka Inui (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1919; Germany 
Duet for Viola and Cello in E flat major, WoO 32 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Heinrich Koll (Viola), Milan Karanovic (Cello)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1796-1797; Vienna, Austria 
Märchenerzählungen for Clarinet, Viola and Piano, Op. 132 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Madoka Inui (Piano), Peter Schmidl (Clarinet), Heinrich Koll (Viola)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Germany 
Lachrymae for Viola and Piano, Op. 48 by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Madoka Inui (Piano), Heinrich Koll (Viola)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950; England 

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