Notes & Reviews:
Of the few orchestral works by Swiss composer Othmar Schoeck (1886-1957) most were written to commission, not by choice alone. The most successful of these is without doubt Sommernacht (Summer Night), heard here in an arrangement for solo strings and large string orchestra. As a work it is akin to, without quite the radicalism of, Schoenberg's Verklarte Nacht. The Berner Symphonieorchester, Sommernacht's 1945 dedicatee, here led by its Swiss-born chief conductor Mario Venzago, and soloists are the featured artists on this all-Swiss program of recorded rarities.
American Record Guide, July/August 2015
While all four works were recorded by the same team in 2014 at Bern's Concert Theater, each was recorded in a different month. That must account for the different results. Everyone - performers and engineers - struck it rich with Besuch in Urach, and Venzago was in full lyric mode for Sommernacht.
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Frederic Mompou: Paisatges; Preludis; Souvenirs et al / Adolf Pla, piano
Schumann: Trilogy - Complete Concertos & Piano Trios, Vol. 1 / Isabelle Faust, violin; Jean-Guihen Queyras, cello; Alexander Melnikov, piano; Freiburg Baroque Orchestra; Heras-Casado
Bach: Goldberg Variations, arr. for string orchestra / Britten Sinfonia; Thomas Gould (D. Sitkovetsky, arranger)
Solissimo: Works for Tuba & Ensembles, by Sarasate, D. Roggen, B. Broughton et al. / Daniel Schaedeli, tuba; Bern Symphony String Ensemble; Swiss Army Symphony Wind Orchestra
Boccherini: String Quintets, Op. 29 (Vol. 10) / Luigi Puxeddu, cello; Rotonda Virtuosi
Tintomara: Music for Trumpet & Trombone, by Rabe, Purcell & Ravel / Wim Van Hasselt, trumpet; Jörgen Van Rijen, trombone
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Carl Nielsen: Songs for Choir / Ars Nova Copenhagen, Bojesen
Beethoven: Complete Works for Piano Trio, Vol. 1 - Trios Nos. 1 & 7 / Swiss Piano Trio