Notes and Editorial Reviews
Georg Philipp Telemann was a consummate master of various national musical styles, from Italian to French to his own German, a point emphatically emphasized in this disc's liner notes. The program itself, however, seeks to highlight yet another dimension of Telemann's compositional universe--the Polish style. His affinity for and interest in this music was fostered by his exposure to Polish folk music and other idioms during time spent in service of the court of Count Erdmann II and as a result of extensive travels through the country. While this translates into specific dance movements in the suites and concertos presented on this disc, it also involves the use of certain instruments and unusual tunings--exemplified by the
flute pastorelle played with virtuoso flair by Matthias Maute in the opening E-flat suite. This piece is full of charming dances--including one of Telemann's loveliest Sarabandes and a Bourrée with clever echo effects between flute and strings.
Similarly, the Concerto for Traverso (a Baroque flute) and strings offers one colorful and captivating movement after another, beginning with a jaunty Moderato and concluding with an insistent, driving Vivace. The Concerto Polonoise for strings begins with the emphatically rhythmic traditional Polish dance and ends with a strangely herky-jerky Allegro. The final Suite for Recorder and strings opens with a typical French overture and follows with a delightful mix of French, Italian, and Polish movements. All the performers are in top form, exhibiting complete mastery and often dazzling virtuosity in passages that in lesser hands would have far milder impact. Of course, compared with flutist Chris Norman (one of Dorian's premier solo artists and a member of the Baltimore Consort) Maute's playing, exceptional as it is, can seem a bit rough around the edges, and the sound, from the famed Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, is just a bit too close for my ideal comfort level (especially with the penetrating flute and recorder). But these are very fussy murmurs about performances that speak strongly and convincingly of their eminent value as documents of these rarely explored pages of the Telemann canon.
--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com Read less
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