Colibrì Ensemble, Alexander Lonquich - SCHUMANN - BURGMÜLLER
- 01 – Robert Schumann – Piano Concerto in A minor Op. 54 – I. Allegro affettuoso
- 02 – Robert Schumann – Piano Concerto in A minor Op. 54 – II. Intermezzo
- 03 – Robert Schumann – Piano Concerto in A minor Op. 54 – III. Allegro vivace
- 04 – Norbert Burgmueller – Symphony No. 2 in D major Op. 11 – I. Allegro moderato
- 05 – Norbert Burgmueller – Symphony No. 2 in D major Op. 11 – II. Andante
- 06 – Norbert Burgmueller – Symphony No. 2 in D major Op. 11 – III. Scherzo. Presto
COLIBRÌ ENSEMBLE, ALEXANDER LONQUICH – SCHUMANN – BURGMÜLLER
The lives of Robert Schumann and Norbert Burgmüller intersect in fascinating ways. Both were born in 1810, and both spent significant periods of their lives in Düsseldorf, which is how Schumann came to orchestrate the Scherzo of Burgmüller’s Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 11. Acclaimed pianist Alexander Lonquich has long been intrigued by the complex interrelationships between these two composers and their circle of influences. Lonquich brings his unique and scintillating insight to this performance of Schumann’s Piano Concerto in A minor, a work which began life as a Phantasie for the composer’s wife, pianist Clara Schumann, but was later augmented to become an irresistible full-length work.
The conversational principles of the concerto’s first movement are taken even further in the central Intermezzo, in which Schumann creates a sense of intimate dialogue enhanced by the delicate, almost chamber-like treatment of his orchestral forces. We then tumble effortlessly into the finale, which is full of subtle touches that reveal a composer at the peak of his powers: there are no perfunctory finale fireworks, but rather a movement of quirky good humour and perfectly-judged invention.
Burgmüller’s Second Symphony unfolds with charming ease, undulating between genial lyricism and stormier interjections reminiscent of Beethoven’s ‘Pastoral’ Symphony. The work culminates in the Scherzo, a tussle between a refined dance, perhaps representing the civilised aspects of humanity, and sudden torrents of sound reflecting the irrepressible forces of Nature.
Alexander Lonquich is joined on this disc by The Colibrì Ensemble, a chamber orchestra which performs regularly in Pescara, Italy, where it has its own concert season. Founded in 2013 by Andrea Gallo, this vibrant collection of musicians has already forged strong relationships with a host of outstanding artists, including a special connection with Alexander Lonquich, who is now a regular guest each season.
Booklet in English, Italian and German.
Program notes by Joanna Wyld.
“The Colibrì Ensemble and Alexander Lonquich, who conducts Schumann’s piano concerto from the solo instrument, are in very good harmony: you can find passion, verve and even ecstasy, but the sound remains elegant and flexible.”
Concerti -Eckhard Weber / July 2018
Passion, drive and even ecstasy break through, but the sound remains grazil and flexible
“The Colibrì Ensemble and Alexander Lonquich, who conducts Schumann’s piano concerto from the solo instrument, are in very good harmony: you can find passion, verve and even ecstasy, but the sound remains elegant and flexible. Sometimes, however, it is somewhat affected, one hears too much the effort to make something special from the famous Schumann piece. By contrast, the Symphony No. 2 by Schumann's contemporary Norbert Burgmüller is completely convincing. The distinct delineation of every detail and the clarity of each gesture make this appealing music.”
“In Schumann’s piano concerto Lonquich finally puts in perspective all the previous recordings of the work… here we finally leave the virtuoso showpiece and a generic romanticism to develop, starting from an almost chamber music relationship with the orchestra, a musical story…”
Musica / Mirko Schipilliti / August 2018
“The perfect adhesion of Colibrì Ensemble to these instrumental colours is incredible, as is the symphonic equilibrium of the romantic language, even more so for a work which is not part of the repertoire of any orchestra in the world, presenting us with a stirring security and mastery of the orchestral preparation realised by Lonquich himself. An impeccable sound quality offers an excellent balance between sections, the flexibility of the sound of the horns, the profundity of that of the basses. The forgotten symphony by Burgmüller here represents a forgotten little masterpiece… In Schumann’s piano concerto Lonquich finally puts in perspective all the previous recordings of the work, which easily become a no-man’s-land. Yes, it’s the nth recording of this famous work, but here we finally leave the virtuoso showpiece and a generic romanticism to develop, starting from an almost chamber music relationship with the orchestra, a musical story through the most diverse attitudes: from the most poetic and contemplative, as in the first movement cadenza — the only truly solo part — to a thorough exploration of the harmonic functions, to the various articulations, to the insistence on an always well-defined phrasing. With Lonquich the presence of the piano is illuminating as it becomes the key to unraveling linguistic and dialectic knots, with a subtle focus on details. The American label Odradek Records proposes an innovative way of operating, almost like scientific journals: “demos” proposed by the artists are collegially evaluated, in search of the best quality.”