Hummel: Trumpet Concerto; Mandolin Concerto; Introduction, Theme and Variations, Op. 102; Flute Sonatas, Opp. 2/2, 50, 64

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3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Hummel
LABELS: Erato Ultima
WORKS: Trumpet Concerto; Mandolin Concerto; Introduction, Theme and Variations, Op. 102; Flute Sonatas, Opp. 2/2, 50, 64
PERFORMER: Maurice André (trumpet), André Saint-Clivier (mandolin), Jacques Chambon (oboe), Anne Queffélec, Noël Lee (piano), András Adorján (flute); Jean-François Paillard CO/Jean-François Paillard, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris/Jean-Pierre Wallez
CATALOGUE NO: 3984-25596-2 Reissue (1973-82)
Close proximity to several works by Hummel offers a good reminder of just how far Beethoven’s music outshines that of his contemporaries. Aside from the famous – and strikingly original – Trumpet Concerto (which here lacks a real spring in its step, despite the swagger of Maurice André’s solo playing), Hummel’s invention was strictly limited. His melodies are short-winded, and the slow movements lack the depth of Haydn’s, let alone Beethoven’s. The flute sonatas are pleasant enough, though I can’t quite see who would want a disc of these alongside a collection of concertante works. All these performances are serviceable, but they lack the sparkle needed to breathe life into this music. Stephen Maddock

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