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Track(s) taken from CDA68006

Konzertmusik for brass and strings, Op 50

composer
1930; commissioned to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Martyn Brabbins (conductor)
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Recording details: December 2012
City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland
Produced by Michael George
Engineered by Mike Clements
Release date: December 2013
Total duration: 17 minutes 45 seconds

Cover artwork: Mountains in Winter (1919) by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880-1938)
Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany / Bridgeman Art Library, London
 
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Other recordings available for download

London Brass Virtuosi, Philharmonia Orchestra, David Honeyball (conductor)

Reviews

'The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra audibly relish the challenges of each work and turn in immaculate performances of each, caught in superb sound by Mike Clements' (Gramophone)

'This fine album from Martyn Brabbins and the BBC SSO … illustrates in the Symphonic Metamorphosis and the Konzertmusik for brass and strings that Hindemith could be both warmly entertaining and bracingly intellectual at the same time' (The Observer)

'This fine orchestral programme … Brabbins and co relish the contrast between abrasive, declaratory brass and singing, soaring strings in the Konzertmusik … the Mathis is entirely worthy of this oft-recorded masterpiece, but the Weber Metamorphosis is the highlight, one of Hindemith's most attractive works, delivered with rhythmic bite and colouristic flair' (The Sunday Times)

'Hindemith's three orchestral scores in ideally gutsy persuasive accounts from Brabbins and his crack team. When a disc like this is presented with such panache, warmly detailed sound and persuasive sleevenotes, there really is no reason not to buy or download' (Classical Music)

'The Konzertmusik for brass and strings is fabulous—neatly constructed and beautifully written, as you'd expect from a composer who could play every orchestral instrument with some competence. Wise listeners will be drawn to experience its pleasures again and again, marvelling at the clever details, like the strings' opening chorale reprised on massed horns at the close of the first part, or the jaunty tuba line accompanying the second movement's subsidiary theme. The rush of adrenalin in the closing minutes is so uplifting, so positive … Martyn Brabbins's hardworking BBC Scottish players cope brilliantly with Hindemith's demands, also turning in a neat, poised reading of the three-movement symphony the composer drew from the opera Mathis der Maler. Hindemith's busy counterpoint seldom sounds dry, and Brabbins glories in the little moments of rapture—the first movement's sonorous coda, and the ecstatic brass Alleluias which close the piece. There's also the crowd-pleasing Symphonic Metamorphosis, gleefully transmuting Weber's small-scale piano duet themes into a unexpectedly entertaining showpiece. Bernstein's Israel Philharmonic recording remains the brassiest and punchiest, but Brabbins's performance has loads to commend it—fabulous percussion in the Turandot scherzo, and an elegant solo flute in the Andantino. A wonderful album, and the perfect introduction to a still under-appreciated composer' (TheArtsDesk.com)
The Konzertmusik for brass and strings, Op 50, was commissioned to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. It is the final piece in a triptych of similarly titled works from 1929–30, which offer perspicuity while preserving harmonic and structural sophistication. Like the earlier Kammermusik, they recall the concertino and ripieno groups of the Baroque concerto grosso, here applied to two departments of the orchestra. In the first part—itself comprising two sections—the brass states a bold chorale-like theme against energetic string counterpoint. Hindemith continues to make a virtue of the timbral differences between the two instrumental groups, not least in the fugue that dominates the second part of the work. The busy chatter of the exposition is the strings’ domain, while the brass provides three-chord punctuation. The viola, Hindemith’s instrument, leads the middle section, as yearning as the fugue was determined, before the counterpoint kicks in once more.

from notes by Gavin Plumley © 2013

La Konzertmusik pour cuivres et cordes, op. 50, commandée pour le cinquantième anniversaire de l’Orchestre symphonique de Boston, est le dernier volet d’un triptyque d’œuvres portant le même titre qui datent des années 1929–30 et font preuve de netteté tout en conservant une sophistication harmonique et structurelle. Comme les Kammermusik antérieures, elles rappellent le concertino et le ripieno du concerto grosso baroque, appliqués ici aux deux sections de l’orchestre. Dans la première partie—qui comprend elle-même deux sections—les cuivres exposent un thème vigoureux à la manière d’un choral sur un contrepoint énergique des cordes. Hindemith continue à tirer parti des différences de timbres entre les deux groupes instrumentaux, entre autres dans la fugue qui domine la seconde partie de l’œuvre. Le bavardage animé de l’exposition est du domaine des cordes, pendant que les cuivres apportent une ponctuation de trois accords. L’alto, l’instrument de Hindemith, mène à la section centrale, aussi ardente que la fugue était déterminée, avant le retour du contrepoint.

extrait des notes rédigées par Gavin Plumley © 2013
Français: Marie-Stella Pâris

Die Konzertmusik für Streichorchester und Blechbläser, op. 50, ein Auftragswerk zum 50-jährigen Bestehen des Boston Symphony Orchestra, ist das letzte von drei Werken mit ähnlichen Titeln aus den Jahren 1929–30, die bei aller harmonischen und strukturellen Differenziertheit verständlich bleiben. Wie die frühere Kammermusik erinnern diese Werke an die Concertino- und Ripienogruppen des barocken Concerto Grosso, die hier in zwei Orchesterabteilungen verwendet werden. Im ersten Teil (der selbst aus zwei Abschnitten besteht) spielen die Blechbläser ein kühnes choralartiges Thema vor einem energischen Kontrapunkt der Streicher. Hindemith nutzt weiter vorteilhaft die verschiedenen Timbres der beiden Instrumentengruppen, nicht zuletzt in der Fuge, die im zweiten Teil des Werkes dominiert. Das eifrige Geplapper der Exposition wird von den Streichern ausgeführt, während die Blechbläser Dreiklang-Punktierungen dazu bieten. Die Bratsche, Hindemiths Instrument, führt den mittleren Abschnitt so sehnsuchtsvoll an, wie die Fuge zuvor zielstrebig war, bevor wieder kontrapunktische Passagen einsetzen.

aus dem Begleittext von Gavin Plumley © 2013
Deutsch: Christiane Frobenius

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