Philippe Bernold and Emmanuel Ceysson perform Concertos for Flute and Harp by Mozart

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LABELS: Aparté
WORKS: Flute Concerto No. 1; Flute and Harp Concerto in C; Andante in C
PERFORMER: Philippe Bernold (flute, conductor), Emmanuel Ceysson (harp); Orchestre de Chambre de Paris


The flute is a regular fixture in Mozart’s oeuvre. From lilting melodies to scurrying staccato passages, Wolfgang knew how to the get the best from the instrument. Yet the composer is said to have claimed that he could not bear the flute. French flautist Philippe Bernold asserts this is nonsense – ‘of course Mozart loved the flute!’ – suggesting in his liner notes that grammatical confusion could be to blame.

It’s a sensible assertion, and one that’s heartily endorsed by this collection of Mozart’s key works for flute. Bernold is an impressive Mozartian; his sound is as full-bodied as a Pinot Noir, with a deep and resonate tone in the lower octaves and an enviable capability for the long phrasing that marks out an exceptional woodwind player. Harpist Emmanuel Ceysson is a sympathetic collaborator and the concerto for both instruments is one of the finest on record. Their Andantino is particularly gorgeous. Bernold wears his heart on his sleeve in the Andante in C; the solo flute part is sweet, but never saccharine. The ensemble playing is generally crisp throughout.


Claire Jackson