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Bruch: Clarinet And Viola Concerto, Etc / Kanoff, Colettixc


Release Date: 11/22/2005 
Label:  Asv   Catalog #: 1180   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Max BruchRobert Schumann
Performer:  Paul ColettiSteven KanoffStaffan Scheja
Conductor:  Tommaso Placidi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 8 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews





Max Bruch (1838?1920) composed his Double Concerto for clarinet, viola, and orchestra in 1911, with his son, Max Felix, a fine player of the clarinet, particularly in mind. A year earlier, he composed the op. 83 Pieces , in which the versatile piano takes the place of an orchestra, but the main purpose is to exploit the expressive possibilities of the clarinet and the viola for solo and duet playing. These are excellent works; unfortunately, the demand for such music has never been great. The concerto is short, taking less than 18 minutes in this performance; I have another recording, long out of print, where it Read more takes less than 17. The concerto is unusual in beginning with a relatively slow movement, proceeding to a somewhat faster one, and ending with a vigorous allegro molto. The most striking passages come at the very beginning, where first the viola and then the clarinet introduce themselves, much as the cello and violin do in the Brahms Double Concerto. Most of what follows reminds one of the 18th-century sinfonia concertante rather than the 19th-century virtuoso concerto, but the music is sufficiently inventive to reward the listener who can do without musical jolts and shocks.


The eight Pieces vary in length, but taken together are twice as long as the concerto, and in many ways more daring. No. 3, the longest at seven minutes, is a stunner, worth the price of the CD by itself. Robert Schumann?s Märchenenzählungen , from 1853, and therefore one of his last works before committal to the mental institution where he died, is both a showcase for clarinet, viola, and piano, and a work with its own jolts and shocks in abundance. Fine as the best of the Bruch material is, one feels that the program has moved from estimable talent to pure genius. This music defies the notion, mainly raised for purposes of refuting it these days, that Schumann?s talent was in decline before he went mad; on the other hand, some hear evidences of mental disturbance in these fascinating pieces. Performances are fine, and ASV?s engineering is excellent, as usual. Merely listening, one could not guess the concerto (2002) was recorded seven years after the other works (1995).


FANFARE: Robert McColley
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Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Clarinet and Viola in E minor, Op. 88 by Max Bruch
Performer:  Paul Coletti (Viola), Steven Kanoff (Clarinet)
Conductor:  Tommaso Placidi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1911; Germany 
2.
Pieces (8) for Clarinet, Viola/Cello and Piano, Op. 83 by Max Bruch
Performer:  Paul Coletti (Viola), Staffan Scheja (Piano), Steven Kanoff (Clarinet)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1910; Germany 
3.
Märchenerzählungen for Clarinet, Viola and Piano, Op. 132 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Steven Kanoff (Clarinet), Paul Coletti (Viola), Staffan Scheja (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853; Germany 

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