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The world of Franz Krommer




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Krommer, almost an exact contemporary of Mozart, is the best of companions for a stroll in the park or a half hour spent on the terrace (a formal one, of course, but not too stiff or periwigged). The air is warm, the breeze light, and you have had a very good sufficiency of a late lunch.

There is not Mozart's searching after more remote harmonic regions, nor Haydn's extraordinary equipoise of gravity and wit, but Krommer is always engaging elegant, robustly architectural but gracefully formed. Or he is swashbuckingly good fun. It is impossible not to like this music. [Click to listen.]

Franz Krommer: Partitas for Wind Ensemble. Copyright (c) 1999 HNH International Ltd.The Michael Thompson Wind Ensemble play the first two partitas of Krommer's Opus 45 (in E flat and B flat) and then the Partita in E flat with two solo horns - a double concerto for winds in all but name. The musicianship is superb - every one of them a virtuoso, but blending perfectly, equally pleased with foreground or background, solo or ensemble. [Click to listen.] Krommer's characteristically strong bass lines (often with contra bassoon) are marvellously light in colour despite their tonal depth and weight. Tempi seem just right. The jaunty hemiolas in the minuets make you smile but never stumble. [Click to listen.]

A most enjoyable disc. Excellent sound. Useful notes. Expect this to win awards in due course.

Copyright © Peter Dale, October 13th 1999 


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