Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Gemmingen, von Ernst. (1759-1813). * Sperger, Johann Matthias. (1750-1812) Orchestral works.

From my collection.
Bought in February 2014.
First listen:21-2-2014.
Second listen: 23-11-2016.
Recording dates: December 2010.
Recording venue: Munchen, BR Studio 1. Germany.
Recording engineer: Almut Telsnig.
Running time: 63:08.
Classical relevance: Interesting composers and works.

Works,

Ernst von Gemmingen
1) Violin Concerto No 1 in A major. (Cadenzas by Kolja Lessing)
2) Violin Concerto No. 2 in C major. (Cadenzas by Kolja Lessing.

Johann Matthias Sperger.

Sinfonia in F, Arrival Symphony. (As opposed to the Farewell Symphony by Haydn) 

Performers.

Kolja Lessing, Violin.
Münchner Rundfunkorchester, Ulf Schirmer.

Never heard of Ernst von Gemmingen? Well me neither, and frankly only the cognoscenti knew about him, and I was not one of them, despite my extensive knowledge of the history of the Violin concerto. It's my favourite concerto form. 

So, we finally have a recording of two of his four Violin concertos. Let's not compare them, to Mozart, (easily done) but see them in their own merit. We know very little about this man, and we have only these concertos to compose a picture of him. What we know is that he came of a family of knights no less, from Northern Wurttemberg, and this is traced back to 1612. How that is linked to his eventuel emerging musical talent I have no clue. The booklet gives some explanation to it, but that would take up to much space to explain. 
As to these Violin concertos I can say, that first of all it's  pleasant music, melodious with some inkling of romanticism in it,.....yes this early! The orchestral parts are rather common, and the merit is in the writing for the Violin, which is extra ordinary good, for a self taught composer. The works came out of his hands when already 40 years of age, so they are not the product of youthful exuberance, but rather carefully crafted works. He knows this trade and is capable. This writing is to be admired, and is by me. I like these concertos, which do not have the ambition to be the best in the trade, but may well serve as splendid examples of their time. The Cadenzas written by Lessing are quite good, tasteful, and never pulled over the top. Fine concertos. Now 3 and 4 need to be recorded CPO! Get on with it :)
Sperger we know a little better being a double bass player by trade, and according to all what is written about him a very good one too. He was born in Feldsberg, Lower Austria, (today's Valtice, Czechia), and he studied Bass with Pichlberger and Albrechtsberger. Of the first teacher/composer I have some recordings. This Symphony recorded on this CD is a funny counterpart to Haydn's Farewell Symphony. With Haydn, the musicians leave the stage one by one, with Sperger it's the other way around. I had a big grin on my face listening to it. Absolutely delightful! The recordings are top notch, but it has to be said that the first movement of the Violin concerto No. 1 was used to align the microphones. It places the Violin to forward. After this it's all topnotch.
The performance of orchestra and soloists is outstanding.😊




Riisager, Knudåge. (1897-1974) The Symphonic Edition, Volume I.

New acquisition. Date of purchase: November 2017. First listen: 21--11-2017. Label: Dacapo. Recording dates: September 2010 & Februa...