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Piano Quartet No. 1, Op. 25 / Academic Festival Overture, Op. 80

Würth Philharmoniker

Piano Quartet No. 1, Op. 25 / Academic Festival Overture, Op. 80

Price: € 20.95
Format: SACD
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917283129
Catnr: CC 72831
Release date: 01 November 2019
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Label
Challenge Classics
UPC
0608917283129
Catalogue number
CC 72831
Release date
01 November 2019

"four stars - outstanding sound"

Ritmo, 16-11-2020
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Artist(s)
Composer(s)
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About the album

Arnold Schoenberg’s rarely recorded orchestration of the Piano Quartet in G minor (1861) demonstrates that Johannes Brahms was in no way the traditionalist that his adherents made him out to be.

Brahms increasingly became a model for Schoenberg during his later years. In 1931, in a letter to the American music critic Alfred Frankenstein, Schoenberg wrote that he had learned a lot from Brahms: “plasticity of design,” “systematics of compositional structure,” and “economy and yet: richness”.

In his essay “Brahms the Progressive” (1933/47), Schoenberg termed his model the protagonist of a forward-looking aesthetic, which despite its orientation by Classical and Romantic principles paved the way for the “developing variation” of New Music. Schoenberg wrote: “It is the purpose of this essay to prove that Brahms, the classicist, the academician, was a great innovator in the realm of musical language, that, in fact, he was a great progressive.” At the time this was a thoroughly provocative thesis since until then Brahms had been regarded as a classicist and a “conservative” upholder of the tradition.

Schoenberg substantiated his view of Brahms with his orchestration of the Piano Quartet in G minor Op. 25 in 1937. Schoenberg’s arrangement for full orchestra is both late romantic and modern.

“The one weeps; the other laughs”, this is how Brahms characterized his two overtures composed in the spa town of Bad Ischl in 1880. The first referred to the Tragic Overture; the second was the Academic Festival Overture heard on this CD. The composer wrote it for the bestowal of his honorary doctorate at the University of Breslau, where he conducted the premiere of the work on 4 January 1881. A potpourri in classical formal guise, the music brings together student songs that were familiar at the time.
De Italiaanse dirigent Claudio Vandelli en het Würth Philharmoniker brengen muziek van Johannes Brahms. En wel heel bijzondere muziek. De werken op dit album vertegenwoordigen twee tegenovergestelde gezichten van de componist: zijn progressieve en zijn academische gezicht. Het Pianokwartet No. 1 - in een bewerking van Arnold Schönberg - dat zowel een laat-romantisch als een modern stuk is, openbaart de progressieve kant van Brahms. In de Akademische Festouvertüre, gebaseerd op studentenliederen, horen we het academische van Brahms.

Geen traditionalist

Arnold Schönbergs zelden opgenomen orkestversie van het Pianokwartet No. 1, toont aan dat Johannes Brahms zeker niet de traditionalist was waar zijn aanhang hem voor hield. In zijn latere jaren zag Schönberg Brahms in toenemende mate als een voorbeeld. Hij schreef in 1931 in een brief aan de Amerikaanse muziekcriticus Alfred Frankenstein, dat hij veel van Brahms had geleerd, zoals de kneedbaarheid van de vorm, de systematiek van de compositiestructuur en de kunst om met spaarzaamheid, toch weelderigheid uit te stralen.

Progressiever dan gedacht

In zijn essay 'Brahms de progressieveling' (1933/1934) verklaart Schönberg zijn voorbeeld tot voorvechter van een vooruitstrevende esthetiek. Een esthetiek die, hoewel gebaseerd op klassieke en romantische principes, het pad geëffend heeft voor de 'ontwikkelende variatie' van de nieuwe muziek. De essayist wilde bewijzen dat Johannes Brahms, de classicus, de academicus, een groot innovator was op het gebied van muzikale taal en progressiever dan menigeen dacht. In die tijd was dat een uitdagende stelling want tot dan toe werd Brahms beschouwd als een klassieke en conservatieve verdediger van tradities. Schönberg onderbouwde zijn beeld van Brahms met zijn orkestratie van het Pianokwartet No. 1.

De een huilt, de ander lacht

Brahms karakteriseerde zijn twee ouvertures die hij in 1880 in Bad Ischl componeerde als: "De een huilt, de ander lacht." De eerste staat tegenwoordig bekend als de Tragische Ouvertüre. De tweede die op dit album staat, is de Akademische Festouvertüre. De componist schreef de ouverture toen hem een eredoctoraat van de universiteit van Breslau werd verleend. Op die universiteit dirigeerde hij op 4 januari 1881 de première als een potpourri, in een formeel klassiek jasje, waarvan de muziek de geliefde studentenliederen uit die tijd samenbracht. In die ouverture herkennen we de academicus Brahms.

Arnold Schönbergs selten aufgenommene Orchesterfassung des Klavierquartetts in g-Moll (1861) zeigt, dass Johannes Brahms keineswegs der Traditionalist war, als den seine Anhänger ihn darstellten.

Brahms wurde zunehmend zum Modell für Schönberg in seinen späteren Jahren. 1931 schrieb Schönberg in einem Brief an den amerikanischen Musikkritiker Alfred Frankenstein, dass er viel von Brahms gelernt habe: Formbarkeit der Gestaltung, Systematik der Kompositionsstruktur, Wirtschaftlichkeit und doch Vielfalt.

In seinem Essay „Brahms, der Fortschrittliche“ (1933/34) machte Schönberg sein Vorbild zum Protagonisten einer vorwärtsschauenden Ästhetik, die trotz ihrer Orientierung an klassischen und romantischen Prinzipien den Weg ebneten für die sich „entwickelnde Variation“ der Neuen Musik. Schönberg schrieb, Zweck des Textes sei es zu beweisen, dass Brahms, der Klassizist, der Akademiker, ein großer Erneuerer im Bereich der musikalischen Sprache gewesen, dass er gar ein großer Fortschrittlicher war. Zu dieser Zeit war dies eine durchweg provokative These, denn Brahms war bis dahin als Klassizist und „konservativer“ Wahrer der Tradition betrachtet worden.

Schönberg begründete seine Sicht mit seiner Orchestrierung des Klavierquartetts in g-Moll, Op. 25, im Jahre 1937. Schönbergs Arrangement für Orchester ist sowohl spätromantisch als auch modern.

„Die eine weint; die andere lacht“ – so charakterisierte Brahms seine beiden Ouvertüren, die er 1880 in der Kurstadt Bad Ischl komponierte. Die erste ist heute als Tragische Ouvertüre bekannt, die zweite war die Akademische Festouvertüre, die man auf dieser CD hören kann. Der Komponist schrieb sie anlässlich der Verleihung des Ehrendoktortitels der Universität Breslau, wo er am 4. Januar 1881 die Uraufführung des Werkes dirigierte. Als Potpourri in formal klassischem Gewand verbindet die Musik zu der Zeit beliebte Studentenlieder.

Artist(s)

Würth Philharmoniker

Würth Philharmoniker Since 2017 the Würth Philharmoniker, the orchestra in residence at the Carmen Würth Forum in Künzelsau and its acoustically finely nuanced chamber music hall, the Reinhold Würth Saal, have been enthusiastically applauded by concertgoers from Hohenlohe and far beyond this region. Established on the initiative of the entrepreneur and patron of culture Prof. Dr. h. c. mult. Reinhold Würth, the orchestra has impressed the public and music press alike with its multifacetedness and a broad repertoire encompassing classical, modern, and contemporary works. Since its establishment the Würth Philharmoniker have presented an extensive repertoire in concerts with renowned guest conductors and soloists such as Kent Nagano, Dennis Russell Davies, Heinz Holliger, Donald Runnicles, Anna Netrebko, Nelson Freire, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Kristine...
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Würth Philharmoniker Since 2017 the Würth Philharmoniker, the orchestra in residence at the Carmen Würth Forum in Künzelsau and its acoustically finely nuanced chamber music hall, the Reinhold Würth Saal, have been enthusiastically applauded by concertgoers from Hohenlohe and far beyond this region. Established on the initiative of the entrepreneur and patron of culture Prof. Dr. h. c. mult. Reinhold Würth, the orchestra has impressed the public and music press alike with its multifacetedness and a broad repertoire encompassing classical, modern, and contemporary works.
Since its establishment the Würth Philharmoniker have presented an extensive repertoire in concerts with renowned guest conductors and soloists such as Kent Nagano, Dennis Russell Davies, Heinz Holliger, Donald Runnicles, Anna Netrebko, Nelson Freire, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Kristine Opolais, and many others. Guest performances at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, George Enescu Festival in Bucharest, Cadogan Hall in London, National Concert Hall in Dublin, the Konzerthaus and Musikverein in Vienna, and Dubai Opera have also brought it international recognition. A recording of two works by Johannes Brahms, the Piano Quartet in G minor Op. 25 in an orchestration by Arnold Schönberg and the Academic Festival Overture in C minor Op. 80, is now being released two years after the founding of this as yet young orchestra. Its members perform this debut CD under the Milan conductor Claudio Vandelli, who will become the principal conductor of the Würth Philharmoniker in January 2020.
For more than three decades the extensive support of art and culture not only has been a personal commitment shared by Reinhold Würth and his family but also has been firmly anchored in the nonprofit Würth Foundation and the Würth Group. This aspect of business philosophy has now found another high point with the Würth Philharmoniker operating under the auspices of the Reinhold Würth Musikstiftung. Motivated by Reinhold Würth’s passion for art and collecting and by the understanding that a business should not be viewed as the mere sum of economic production figures but instead also has cultural and social responsibilities, the Würth Group supports art, music, and literature with its free exhibition halls throughout Europe and with its extensive cultural program featuring more than seventy-five events per year.

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Claudio Vandelli (conductor)

Italian conductor Claudio Vandelli looks back on a long and standing international career. He is highly acclaimed, both as director of the symphonic repertoire and accompanist of internationally renowned soloists, such as Anna Netrebko, Yuri Bashmet, Erwin Schrott, Sergej Krylov, Denis Matsuev or Vadim Repin, who appreciate his magnificent talent in supporting their interpretations in the most thoughtful and sensitive way. As permanent guest conductor of the “Novaya Russiya” State Symphony Orchestra, Vandelli recently celebrated his 10th year of residence. He led them in multiple performances of masterpieces by Mahler, Strauss, Beethoven, Brahms and Verdi at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory Grand Hall.   By January 2020, Claudio Vandelli will hold the position of the first ever Chief Conductor of the „Würth Philharmoniker“, founded...
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Italian conductor Claudio Vandelli looks back on a long and standing international career. He is highly acclaimed, both as director of the symphonic repertoire and accompanist of internationally renowned soloists, such as Anna Netrebko, Yuri Bashmet, Erwin Schrott, Sergej Krylov, Denis Matsuev or Vadim Repin, who appreciate his magnificent talent in supporting their interpretations in the most thoughtful and sensitive way. As permanent guest conductor of the “Novaya Russiya” State Symphony Orchestra, Vandelli recently celebrated his 10th year of residence. He led them in multiple performances of masterpieces by Mahler, Strauss, Beethoven, Brahms and Verdi at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory Grand Hall.
By January 2020, Claudio Vandelli will hold the position of the first ever Chief Conductor of the „Würth Philharmoniker“, founded in 2017. Throughout the next seasons, he will build up and strengthen the positioning of this high-class symphony orchestra in the vast musical landscape of Germany.
The 18/19 season brings him back to Moscow, where he will conduct a concert with Ildar Abdrazakov in the new Zaryadye Hall, after that he leads symphonic concerts in Armenia and the Czech Republic. Furthermore, he will hold numerous auditions in order to select the musicians for the „Pan-Caucasian Youth Orchestra“, which will be resident at the new Tsinandali Festival (Georgia) in September 2019.
Concert engagements bring Vandelli to many important stages in Europe and Russia, amongst others the Berliner Philharmonie, the Royal Albert Hall, the Teatro Colon Buenos Aires, the Konzerthaus and Musikverein in Vienna, the Smetana Hall in Prague, the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow and the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, as well as to the Festspiele Baden-Baden and Aix-en-Provence. He worked with orchestras like the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra London, Gürzenich Orchestra Köln, Hamburger Symphoniker, Orchester der Volksoper Wien, Royal Danish Orchestra, Moscow Soloists and many more.
From a very young age, Claudio Vandelli has been devoted to recognizing young, talented musicians and moulding them into professional orchestral musicians. Martin Engstroem, founder of the Verbier Festival (Switzerland), entrusted Claudio Vandelli with the creation of the three international orchestras of the Festival. In addition to that, Maestro Vandelli has been Director of the Music Department and Assistant Music Director to James Levine for ten years. In Verbier, Claudio Vandelli successfully worked with a large number of guest conductors, such as Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, Kurt Masur, Mstislav Rostropovich, Wolfgang Sawallisch and Yuri Temirkanov. He conducted the first international tour of the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra with soloist Khatia Buniatishvili.
In the last seasons Maestro Vandelli achieved great success with film music concerts, such as “The Best of John Williams” tour in Germany and conducted the concert “Great Sounds of Italian Cinema” at the Vienna Konzerthaus and in Hungary. The French TV channel “Mezzo” broadcasted the Gala Concert of the Sochi Winter Festival 2017 conducted by Vandelli, which was recorded live with soloists Yuri Bashmet, Vadim Repin, Denis Matsuev and Avi Avital. Aired by German TV channel ZDF and in cinemas worldwide, the open air “Sommernachtskonzert 2015” at Königsplatz in Munich, with soloists Anna Netrebko, Jonas Kaufmann, Thomas Hampson, Ildar Abdrazakov and Elena Zhidkova, took place under Maestro Vandelli’s baton.

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Composer(s)

Johannes Brahms

Johannes Brahms was a German composer and pianist. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria. His reputation and status as a composer is such that he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the 'Three Bs' of music, a comment originally made by the nineteenth-century conductor Hans von Bülow.   Brahms composed for symphony orchestra, chamber ensembles, piano, organ, and voice and chorus. A virtuoso pianist, he premiered many of his own works. He worked with some of the leading performers of his time, including the pianist Clara Schumann and the violinist Joseph Joachim (the three were close friends). Many of his works have become...
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Johannes Brahms was a German composer and pianist. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria. His reputation and status as a composer is such that he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the "Three Bs" of music, a comment originally made by the nineteenth-century conductor Hans von Bülow.
Brahms composed for symphony orchestra, chamber ensembles, piano, organ, and voice and chorus. A virtuoso pianist, he premiered many of his own works. He worked with some of the leading performers of his time, including the pianist Clara Schumann and the violinist Joseph Joachim (the three were close friends). Many of his works have become staples of the modern concert repertoire. Brahms, an uncompromising perfectionist, destroyed some of his works and left others unpublished.
Brahms has been considered, by his contemporaries and by later writers, as both a traditionalist and an innovator. His music is firmly rooted in the structures and compositional techniques of the Classical masters. While many contemporaries found his music too academic, his contribution and craftsmanship have been admired by subsequent figures as diverse as Arnold Schoenberg and Edward Elgar. The diligent, highly constructed nature of Brahms's works was a starting point and an inspiration for a generation of composers. Within his meticulous structures is embedded, however, a highly romantic nature.

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Arnold Schönberg

Arnold Schoenberg was one of the most influential composers of the 20th century, but perhaps also one of the least listened to. Strikingly, Schoenberg was self-educated, even though his music is imbedded in complex music theory. It was Schoenberg who definitely departed from tonality and he developed the twelve tone technique. In this composition style, one has to use every twelve tones of the scale, before one can be repeated. The struggle to adhere to this dogma is clearly audible: his music is tense, hectic and particularly acute - and therefore at times not that accesible to occasional listeners.  Nevertheless, his music and his liberation of tonality had an enormous impact on all composers that came after him. Together with the...
more

Arnold Schoenberg was one of the most influential composers of the 20th century, but perhaps also one of the least listened to. Strikingly, Schoenberg was self-educated, even though his music is imbedded in complex music theory. It was Schoenberg who definitely departed from tonality and he developed the twelve tone technique. In this composition style, one has to use every twelve tones of the scale, before one can be repeated. The struggle to adhere to this dogma is clearly audible: his music is tense, hectic and particularly acute - and therefore at times not that accesible to occasional listeners.

Nevertheless, his music and his liberation of tonality had an enormous impact on all composers that came after him. Together with the music of his students Alban Berg and Anton Webern, his style is often referred to as the Second Viennese School, parallel to the First Viennese School of Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven, who, in a similar vein, changed the history of music for good.

His most performed works are his string sextet Verklärte Nacht, his five Orchestra pieces op. 16, and his opera Moses und Aron. The development of Schoenberg's music can be heard in his Five String Quartets in particular.


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Press

four stars - outstanding sound
Ritmo, 16-11-2020

The quality of the playing is quite high, particularly in the solo winds.
Fanfare, 28-5-2020

... curious about Schoenberg’s view, this is heartily recommended.
American Record Guide, 01-4-2020

A remarkable debut, presented with the best possible sound engineering, recorded in loco, by one of today's best recording specialists around. It puts this orchestra-in-the-making firmly on the map.
HR audio, 05-11-2019

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