“Hünteler is playing a Jakob Denner Flute, one of only four to survive, and which was discovered in 1991 in the attic of a house near Nuremberg, where it had lain undisturbed for almost three centuries. And indeed Hünteler elicits beautiful sounds from the instrument.” ~Fanfare
“Hünteler is playing a Jakob Denner Flute, one of only four to survive, and which was discovered in 1991 in the attic of a house near Nuremberg, where it had lain undisturbed for almost three centuries. And indeed Hünteler elicits beautiful sounds from the instrument.” (Fanfare)
Benda was headquartered in Berlin and his lifetime encompassed the latter three-quarters of the 18th century. He was one of those who ws fairly well known in his time — especially for his stage works — but is all but forgotten today. His harpsichord concertos received considerable attention during his life. They show the attributes of works composed during the time that the Baroque period was winding down and the Classical period opening. Benda did not just label these as just keyboard concertos but was specific that they were for the harpsichord, which was an important member of the Baroque orchestra.
What a versatile artist Steven Isserlis is. Having made his name as a sympathetic interpreter of a wide variety of romantic and modern music, here he shows he can be just as persuasive in eighteenth-century repertoire. His stylistic awareness is evident in beautiful, elegant phrasing, selective use of vibrato and varied articulation, giving an expressive range that never conflicts with the music’s natural language. In the cello concertos he is helped by an extremely sensitive accompaniment, stressing the chamber musical aspects of Haydn’s pre-London orchestral writing. The soft, intimate sonority at 3'06'' in the first movement of the D major is a typical example. The Adagios are taken at a flowing speed, but Isserlis’s relaxed approach means they never sound hurried. The Allegro molto finale of the C major Concerto, on the other hand, sounds poised rather than the helter-skelter we often hear. In his understanding of the music, Isserlis is a long way ahead of Han-na Chang, whose version places the emphasis on fine, traditional-style cello playing. Mork’s vivacious, imaginative performances characterize the music very strongly, but my preference would be for Isserlis’s and Norrington’s lighter touch and greater refinement.
David Chesky, born in Miami in 1956, settled in New York City in the 1970s and now identifies himself as an "urban orchestral composer." His Urban Concertos, of which he has written nearly a dozen, constitute his most substantial output. In the program notes for this recording of three of his concertos, he wrote, "Perhaps one can say my style is neo-impressionist. But I do not live on some quaint idyllic country farm, I live in the city that never sleeps! It is a hard-driving concrete jungle that pulsates around the clock." "Pulsating" is an apt descriptor for Chesky's music, which is notable for its restlessly high energy and rhythmic propulsiveness.