by Hummel, Neruda, Tartini & Haydn, Telemann: Works by Hummel, Telemann, Neruda, Tartini & Haydn

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4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: by Hummel,Neruda,Tartini & Haydn,Telemann
LABELS: EMI
WORKS: Works by Hummel, Telemann, Neruda, Tartini & Haydn
PERFORMER: Ole Edvard Antonsen (trumpet)ECO/Jeffrey Tate
CATALOGUE NO: CDC 7 54897 2 DDD

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All self-respecting record companies sport a trumpet soloist these days. EMI’s proud signing is a personable young Norwegian, Ole Edvard Antonsen, and his first classical release presents the inevitable Haydn and Hummel concertos complemented by works of Telemann, Neruda and Tartini (the last an attractive violin concerto transcription). Unfortunately for Antonsen, the two Hs recently received outstanding performances by Reinhold Friedrich (Capriccio), whose gently coloured phrasing maintains the contour of the music whilst providing an individual reading.

Friedrich plays the Hummel in E, its original key, and performs the Haydn from the authoritative Henle Urtext edition, while Antonsen chooses the now old-fashioned E flat for Hummel and what sounds like the Boosey and Hawkes edition for Haydn, faithfully performing all its legato/staccato marks and octave displacements as if Haydn had written them himself.

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The trumpet’s first entry (during the orchestral tutti) is therefore missing and with the final bars an octave higher than intended, Haydn’s original and very effective orchestral balance is lost. The playing is technically impressive, but the interpretations seem predictable, with a reliance on projected high notes for effect, particularly prevalent in the Baroque works, and a harsh, rather pedantic staccato. With these works there will always be stiff competition, but Antonsen is a talented young artist and I look forward to hearing him in other repertoire. Deborah Calland