Customer Review

26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dazzling playing, 2 Nov 2010
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This review is from: Italian Concertos (Audio CD)
Purists would shudder in horror at these Italian baroque pieces, none of which was written for the trumpet (the natural trumpet of the time being quite incapable of playing any of them). However, I'm not a purist and I thoroughly enjoyed these bright, bouncy pieces, played with gorgeous, burnished tone, tremendous fluidity and enormous technical facility.

However, brilliant though she is, Alison Balsom is up against THE MASTER, Maurice André, who quite simply had no equal in this sort of repertoire. Take the Tartini. Ms. Balsom plays it beautifully, but it sounds somewhat limp against the magnificent 1970s' André version on Erato, in which he was paired with Nev Marriner and the ASMF on full sparkle. Who can match that sort of combination? Still, Maurice never looked anything like as good on a cover. Serves him right, I say.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 7 Mar 2011 08:02:17 GMT
Shame on you for that last comment. Ms Balsam is a great talent and shouldn't need glamour to 'enhance' her performances. If Jordan played these concerti on the spoons, would you criticize her for being limp-wristed but let her off for her cover picture? Criticize rather the record companies that in the light of falling sales are pushing classical music with glamour photos, which is quite pathetic and disgusting.

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Mar 2011 19:54:16 GMT
Teemacs says:
This, HWG-C, is called A Joke. Just check out recent photos of Maurice André and you'll get it.

But, where, pray, was there any criticism of the lady in question? I did say she was a great talent, did I not? Just not quite up to the André standard (yet?), IMHO, of course.

And who's Jordan and why has she stopped those wrist curls and what is she doing in my cutlery drawer?

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Apr 2011 17:03:53 BDT
D. Drew says:
Perhaps HWG-C is referring to Michael Jordan? He could probably dunk a basketball with a spoon, so who can say?

Although HWG-C is right about the silly cover photos of female classical artists looking like they're en route to their senior prom, the photos of the younger generation of classical male performers are often just as amusing. They look like the male models from a Sainsbury's advert. When I bought my first Balsam disc, I had no idea she was so delectable to look at (that'll get me in trouble with HWG-C) because Hyperion - the best classical label ever, in my view - doesn't put artist photos on the covers of their discs. However, upon opening the booklet to read the liner notes, there she was, a pleasant surprise, if ever there was one. Her visual appeal notwithstanding, if her musical talents weren't on a par with her physical ones, I wouldn't have bought another.

Loosen up, HWG-C. Have a drink. You'll feel so much better...

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Dec 2011 20:27:28 GMT
E.Meredith says:
Dear Teemacs, what would we do without your wit to cheer us all up.
Keep up the good work.
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Teemacs
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Location: Switzerland

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