Fröst and Friends: Encores

Our rating 
5.0 out of 5 star rating 5.0

COMPOSERS: Bach,Brahms,Chaplin,Chopin,G Fröst,Gounod,Henryson,Hillborg,Kreisler,M Fröst,Messager etc
LABELS: BIS
WORKS: Encores by Bach, Brahms, Chaplin, Chopin, M Fröst, G Fröst, Gounod, Henryson, Hillborg, Kreisler, Messager etc
PERFORMER: Martin Fröst (clarinet), Roland Pöntinen (piano); with Malena Ernman (mezzo), Hermann Stefánsson, Sölve Kingstedt (clarinet), Christian Svarfvar, Åsa Thedéen (violin), Göran Fröst (viola), Torleif Thedéen (cello), Svante Henryson (cello, bass)
CATALOGUE NO: BIS SACD-1823

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The mercurial Swedish clarinettist Martin Fröst is the star in this selection of encores from various phases of his career. Most are with his regular piano partner, Roland Pöntinen: predictable items such as Messager’s Solo de concours, the Rachmaninov Vocalise and Monti’s Csárdás are mixed with arrangements of Scriabin and Chopin piano pieces, Brahms and Schumann songs, and Charlie Chaplin’s Smile.

With the mezzo-soprano Malena Ernman, there’s a brilliantly zany Rimsky-Korsakov Flight of the Bumble-Bee. With larger groups, there’s an irresistible klezmer number, and a tuneful waltz written for Fröst’s wedding by his brother Göran. And there’s much more, from Bach and Bach/Gounod to Anders Hillborg, jazz and an improvisation – all superbly played, and well recorded with a surround-sound option.

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Obviously a must for clarinettists; but other performers, and listeners too, will enjoy this demonstration of what can be achieved with impeccable technique, a fertile imagination and a light touch. Anthony Burton