Notes and Editorial Reviews
I was reminded time and again that Telemann's music is extraordinarily good, and amazed at the quality of the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra's performances. This is an unmitigated joy.
– Gramophone [1/2011]
Telemann's Table Music is a wonderful, compendious work in three "productions", each of which consists of an overture, a quartet, a concerto, a trio, a sonata, and an orchestral conclusion. The music is amazingly varied and consistently delightful--and so is this set's packaging, with each disc coming in a slipcase decorated with increasing pieces of tableware until you have a complete place-setting. To be honest, I rather dreaded
listening to this set because the Freiburgers take great pride in offering the most hideous version of "authentic" string sound this side of Roger Norrington, but I need not have worried.
True, the works that feature solo strings, such as the A major violin sonata, or the Concerto for Three Violins, could only have been improved with a touch more vibrato and some warmth to the tone, but the players' impeccable intonation counts for a great deal, and the wind players are pretty terrific. Outstanding items include the Oboe Sonata in G minor, the Triple Concerto for Flute, Violin, and Cello, the Double Horn Concerto, and the Flute Sonata in B minor. That's a lot of great stuff. And when the entire ensemble plays together, lively tempos and a characterful variety of continuo sounds offer a feast for the ears. It all goes to show that this particular baroque orchestra really does sound best in baroque music, and should stay within its Fach.
Given the wide-ranging performance forces required for the various pieces, the engineering is remarkably consistent: clear but not spotlit, with an attractive room ambience. The continuo never overwhelms the solo lines, but as with so many "authentic" productions there's a good bit of performance noise. After a few minutes the ear adjusts, but it's a bit obtrusive. After hearing all four hours of this music several times, though, I can say without hesitation that if you want "original" instruments, this set fully lives up to the highest expectations. Of its kind, there is none better.
– David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
Works on This Recording
Tafelmusik by Georg Philipp Telemann
Gottfried Von der Goltz,
Freiburg Baroque Orchestra
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