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Alison Balsom, Bach - Works for Trumpet,
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This review is from: Bach: Works for Trumpet (Audio CD)
Released in January 2006, this is the second CD from Alison Balsom - the third if you include The fam'd Italian master' released on the Hyperion label in 2003, which was music performed by various brass players and The Parley of Instruments group.
The title itself is interesting. It suggests that all the works are written by Bach, but this is only partially true, and none of them were originally scored for the trumpet. In fact, Bach wrote no works specifically for solo trumpet, only pieces such as the Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 can be found as possible examples of Bach's affinity to the instrument. The two pieces not wholly Bach are the concerto in D, written as a violin concerto by Vivaldi, and the concerto in C minor by Marcello. Bach's contribution was to transcribe these pieces from their original orchestral arrangement to a solo harpsichord work. The further transcription to trumpet not only adds a further chapter to the history of these pieces, but presents them in a way which I think both Bach and Vivaldi would wholeheartedly approve.
The two concertos are amongst my favourites of this disc, in particular the beautifully arranged and performed presto from Marcello's C minor concerto. My clear favourite however is track 17, the soaring third movement from the concerto in C, written originally as a harpsichord concerto (BWV 1055). This is Bach at his finest, and the precision playing, of organ as well as Alison's trumpet, produces work of almost regal or ceremonial feel.
Other works such as the cello suite no.2, and badinerie from orchestral suite no. 2 are familiar favourites and will make the music more immediately accessible to the listener.
Worthy of mention are Colm Carey (organ), Alina Ibragimova (violin), Alistair Ross (harpsichord & chamber organ) and Mark Caudle (viola da gamba) who all contribute much to this Works for Trumpet.
To gain the most satisfaction from the CD I recommend listening to the original versions. EMI have quoted the BWV numbers for each piece so it will prove an easy task to track down the music and hear it in its original form. A time consuming and costly exercise maybe, but ultimately rewarding.
Alison's subsequent award of Young British Classical Performer of 2006 will have deservedly helped sales of this CD.
If you like Bach, you'll love this.
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Initial post: 12 Aug 2011 09:37:48 BDT
I. Joubert says:
a Very fine and extremely well composed review from someone who seems to be very knowledgeable.I have relied on this review in purchasing the CD and I was not disapointed!
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