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Brull: Orchestral Works / Malta Philharmonic, Belorussian State Symphony

Release Date: 07/06/2018 
Label:  Cameo Classics Catalog #: 9103  
Number of Discs: 2 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Ignaz Brull was born on November 7, 1846 in the town of Prossnitz in Moravia. In 1850, his family moved to Vienna. His parents were both very musical and soon realized that the young Ignaz had great musical skills. Brull's mother encouraged him by giving him his first piano lessons, but it was evident that he required more professional tuition, and he became a pupil of Professor Julius Epstein. Later he would study under Anton Rufinatscha and then Otto Dessoff. By the age of 14 he had composed his first piano concerto. Being based in Vienna had many advantages, the most apparent being the contact with so many prominent and influential composers, performers and conductors. Brull and Johannes Brahms became firm friends, a friendship which Read more lasted until Brahms' death. Even Brahms’ orchestral works, including the symphonies, were first played by Brahms and Brull on two pianos for friends and publishers. Brull wrote over 100 works for solo piano, many orchestral and chamber works and numerous operas. Sadly, nearly all his works have been ignored by the music establishment for more than a century, and the public have been denied access to Brull's qualities which were so evident to Brahms. Even his close friendship with Brahms could not save him from the anti-Semitism being fuelled by Wagner and Liszt during the 19th century. Hitler idolized Wagner, and he ordered that music scores of Jewish composers be found and burnt. Fortunately for us, many of them were well hidden. Brull deserves perhaps to be positioned alongside his friends Mahler and Schumann, and the closest of all, Johannes Brahms. Read less

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Listener-friendly music from a friend of Brahms October 22, 2018 By Ralph Graves (Hood, VA) See All My Reviews "Moravian composer Ignaz Brüll (1846-1907) moved to Vienna in 1856. He was an accomplished composer and pianist and was well-known for both talents. Brüll was a close friend of Brahms. Brahms' symphonies were often first heard in two-piano arrangements -- with Brahms and Brüll at the keyboards. Although quite successful during his lifetime, his music declined in popularity after his death. Because of his Jewish background, the Nazis tried to erase Brüll from music history altogether. Only recently has his music enjoyed renewed interest and performances. So what's it like? This adventurous collection from Cameo gives a fair representation. The shorter works are perhaps the most successful. The "Macbeth" Overture of 1884 is a thrilling eight-minute work that conveys the turbulent nature of the drama. The Serenade No. 1 Op.29 was Brüll's first hit (as it were). This 1877 work is chock-full of appealing melodies, orchestrated in light textures. It reminded me somewhat of Mendelssohn's music. The second serenade in E-flat major is equally delightful. The harmonies are a little thicker than the first. But that hint of Mendelssohn remains. keeping the music light and charming. The large-scale works show some Brahmsian influence, I think. Although that influence is more along the lines of structure, rather than sound. Brüll's Symphony in E minor is laid out in proper four-movement form. Brüll uses his material effectively, developing ideas in logical, easy-to-follow lines. For me, the best work was the Violin Concerto. It was written for Johann Lauterbach, who must have been a ferocious talent, judging by the solo part. While there are plenty of fireworks, there's also some solid music-making here, too. The slow movement is so poignantly beautiful, I'm surprised it's not played more often. Violinist Ilya Hoffmann delivers a wonderful performance. His playing has an expressiveness to it that's pure Romanticism. His performance of the middle movements matches the beauty of the music. And that's saying something. Both the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra and the Belarusian State Symphony perform well. The audience for the BSS was a little noisy, but not terribly so. An excellent collection of an overlooked composer. And, judging by the quality of the compositions, an unjustly overlooked one at that." Report Abuse
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