Stamitz, Hoffmeister: Viola Concertos / Chang, Thakar, Baltimore Chamber Orchetra

> Viola Concerto No. 1 in D major - I. Allegro
> Viola Concerto No. 1 in D major - II. Andante moderato
> Viola Concerto No. 1 in D major - III. Rondeau
> Viola Concerto in D major - I. Allegro
> Viola Concerto in D major - II. Adagio
> Viola Concerto in D major - III. Rondo: Allegro
> Viola Concerto in B flat major - I. Allegro con spiritoso
> Viola Concerto in B flat major - II. Poco adagio
> Viola Concerto in B flat major - III. Rondo: Allegro

Album Summary

>Stamitz, Carl : Concerto for Viola in D major, Op. 1/1
>Hoffmeister, Franz Anton : Concerto for Viola in D major
>Hoffmeister, Franz Anton : Concerto for Viola in B flat major
Performer Conductor Ensemble Composers

Notes & Reviews:

Stamitz was a violinist, violist and composer, a formidable virtuoso who absorbed much from his predecessors in the Mannheim school. His Viola Concerto in D is a brilliantly conceived work, full of technical demands more often encountered in virtuosic nineteenth-century music. Allied to this is a rich sense of color and intricate scoring, making this one of the outstanding works of its century. Hoffmeister is better known as a publisher but his two concertos are adorned with rich melodic beauty, elegance and tonal breadth. They are performed by soloist Victoria Chiang, acclaimed for her "wonderfully deep, communicative sound" (Baltimore Sun).

"These are attractive, elegant works in a somewhat generic classical style, with singing opening allegros employing triadic themes, touching slow movements with some minor-key inflections, and perky rondo finales. The two works by Hoffmeister have a bit more harmonic interest and rhythmic tension than the more aristocratic Stamitz piece, but the differences aren't huge. Victoria Chiang plays with a big tone and lots of enthusiasm, and since she's rather closely recorded it's a good thing that her intonation is so accurate, even in double-stops. The Baltimore Chamber Orchestra is a modern-instrument group, which certainly isn't a disadvantage. The playing is polished and always falls gratefully on the ear. In the first movements, I could imagine perhaps a bit more energy, but this is a very minor issue. Aside from the forward balance of the soloist (understandable in any work for viola and orchestra), the engineering is warm and natural. A very pleasant release." -Classics Today

"These are not period-instrument or particularly period-informed performances; they use tasteful vibrato and contemporary strings. The Baltimore Chamber Orchestra is up to all its demands, Markand Thakar is a steady hand at the helm, and Victoria Chiang, professor at Baltimore’s Peabody Conservatory, makes for a superb soloist, with no second thoughts about what technical demands there are and with the richness of tone necessary to really “sell” the viola as solo instrument." -MusicWeb-International

Strings Magazine
[Chiang] channels something extra special - her powerful sound is explosive. With the deft Baltimore orchestra at her back, Chiang stands at attention, creating a virtuosic wall of sound. It is hard not to hold your breath as she executes the amazing runs penned by Stamitz.

WETA
outstanding and expressive violists ... Victoria Chiang ... joins fellow Baltimoreans Markand Thakar and his ensemble the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra for three viola concertos from the last quarter of the 18th century. Recorded at Goucher College in Towson, the two concertos by Hoffmeister (one with cadenzas by Suzanne Beia) and one by Carl Stamitz exhibit the best of their genre.

American Record Guide
These three viola concertos are all pleasant works of the late classical era... This budget priced issue is well worth investigating.

The WholeNote
... the recent Naxos release of a CD of Viola Concertos by Stamitz and Hoffmeister (8.572162) is a welcome one. It's an intriguing one as well, for viola concertos were not that common in the 18th century. Violist Victoria Chang is perfectly at home in this charming, if somewhat insubstantial, music and receives excellent support from the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra under Markand Thakar.

MusicWeb International
Sound quality is good, warm and well balanced... The CD booklet is slim but informative...

Infodad.com
... the concertos by Carl Philipp Stamitz... and Franz Anton Hoffmeister... provide a fine opportunity for Victoria Chiang to excel in the solo role, with Markand Thakar and the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra offering balanced and attractively buoyant backup. The Stamitz concerto is the most interesting of the three and the most "violistic," emphasizing the solo instrument's warmth and glow in an unusually orchestrated work that includes divisi violas plus clarinets rather than oboes - the clarinet's range and sound world being closer to that of the viola. The virtuosity that this concerto demands is substantial, including harmonics and left-hand pizzicati that make it sound in some ways like a 19th-century work rather than one written around 1774.

The Hoffmeister concertos are also well made, but they are more ordinary in sound and approach. Both are elegant enough in their first movements and cheerful enough in their finales, and both have slow movements that are wistful rather than profound. Hoffmeister's orchestration is more traditional than that of Stamitz, and Hoffmeister emphasizes the viola's upper range to a greater degree, creating works that are certainly pleasant... they are filled with lovely moments and are quite well played on this CD.

Allmusic.com
... Baltimore-based violist Victoria Chiang and the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra under Markand Thakar deliver a decent performance of the viola concerto here, with a feel for its most distinctive quality: its large, discursive structure. The solo part itself includes multiple stops, harmonics, and passagework worthy of a true virtuoso; Chiang never lets you imagine the sweat. The sound, from an auditorium at Baltimore's Goucher College, is pretty basic, and in general this release is oriented toward those with specialist interests, but the Stamitz performance is very fine.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/05/2009-05/06/2009); Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/18/2009-05/19/2009).



Reviews

There are currently no reviews, be the first one!
Login or Create an Account to write a review
 

Also Purchased



Previous


Next


Works Details

>Stamitz, Carl : Concerto for Viola in D major, Op. 1/1
  • Performer: Victoria Chiang (Viola)
  • Conductor: Markand Thakar
  • Ensemble: Baltimore Chamber Orchetra
  • Notes: Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/05/2009-05/06/2009); Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/18/2009-05/19/2009)
  • Running Time: 22 min. 10 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Form: Concerto

>Hoffmeister, Franz Anton : Concerto for Viola in D major
  • Performer: Victoria Chiang (Viola)
  • Conductor: Markand Thakar
  • Ensemble: Baltimore Chamber Orchetra
  • Notes: Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/05/2009-05/06/2009); Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/18/2009-05/19/2009)
  • Running Time: 20 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Form: Concerto

>Hoffmeister, Franz Anton : Concerto for Viola in B flat major
  • Performer: Victoria Chiang (Viola)
  • Conductor: Markand Thakar
  • Ensemble: Baltimore Chamber Orchetra
  • Notes: Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/05/2009-05/06/2009); Kraushaar Auditorium, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD (05/18/2009-05/19/2009)
  • Running Time: 20 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical