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Antoine Tamestit - Brahms: Viola Sonatas, Op. 120 - Zwei Gesänge, Op. 91

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Brahms: Viola Sonatas, Op. 120 - Zwei Gesänge, Op. 91

Antoine Tamestit, Cédric Tiberghien and Matthias Goerne

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It's hard to imagine how anything could have been improved upon with this Brahms recital from three of Harmonia Mundi's most sensitive and interesting artists.
The programming alone is a work of art: the idea of pairing the viola versions of Brahms's two autumnal Op. 120 Clarinet Sonatas inspired by Meiningen Orchestra clarinettist Richard Mühlfeld, with three further softly intimate works of his showcasing the viola's similarities with the human voice – viola and piano arrangements of Nachtigall from the six Op. 97 Songs (extra resonant, when Brahms described Mühlfeld as the nightingale of the orchestra) and the famous Op. 49 Wiegenlied, followed by the Op. 91 Zwei Gesänge for Voice, Viola and Piano.

Then there's the instruments, because for Tamestit and Tiberghien these are just as important to the music's alchemy as the abilities of the performers, and their quest to find the perfect match for the penetrating, multi-shaded tones of Tamestit's Stradivarius viola eventually led them to an 1899 Bechstein piano. The result was two instruments capable of a range of colours and roundness of sound across all registers and through even the most virtuosic of passages; and that's precisely what you hear across the resultant lyrically tender, natural-feeling readings, because beyond the hand in glove chamber partnering you're hearing, their respective tones are both alive with colouristic complexities and verily glowing.
Then, beyond being simply delicious, the vocal quality Tamestit draws out from the famous Wiegenlied melody serves as the perfect overture to the programme's Zwei Gesänge – shaped icing on the cake – yet another perfect combination, Tamestit's lines lovingly encircling and dovetailing with Goerne's own richly warm, gentle baritone, the polished Teldex Studio engineering casting them on satisfyingly equal footings with each other, with the piano just slightly behind.

In short, absolutely gorgeous. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz

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Brahms: Viola Sonatas, Op. 120 - Zwei Gesänge, Op. 91

Antoine Tamestit

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1
Viola Sonata in F Minor, Op. 120 No. 1: I. Allegro appassionato
00:07:35

Johannes Brahms, Composer - Friedrich Rückert, Lyricist - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

2
Viola Sonata in F Minor, Op. 120 No. 1: II. Andante un poco adagio
00:04:38

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

3
Viola Sonata in F Minor, Op. 120 No. 1: III. Allegretto grazioso
00:04:19

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

4
Viola Sonata in F Minor, Op. 120 No. 1: IV. Vivace
00:05:01

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

5
Nachtigall, Op. 97 No. 1 (Arr. for viola and piano)
00:02:27

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

6
Viola Sonata in E-Flat Major, Op. 120 No. 2: I. Allegro amabile
00:08:37

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

7
Viola Sonata in E-Flat Major, Op. 120 No. 2: II. Allegro appassionato
00:04:53

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

8
Viola Sonata in E-Flat Major, Op. 120 No. 2: III. Andante con moto - Allegro
00:06:58

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

9
Wiegenlied, Op. 49 No. 4 (Arr. for viola and piano)
00:01:33

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

10
Zwei Gesänge, Op. 91: I. Gestillte Sehnsucht
00:05:08

Johannes Brahms, Composer - Friedrich Rückert, Lyricist - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Matthias Goerne, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

11
Zwei Gesänge, Op. 91: II. Geistliches Wiegenlied
00:05:07

Johannes Brahms, Composer - PUBLIC DOMAIN, MusicPublisher - Antoine Tamestit, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Emanuel Geibel, Lyricist - Matthias Goerne, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Cédric Tiberghien, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

2020 harmonia mundi 2021 harmonia mundi

Album Description

It's hard to imagine how anything could have been improved upon with this Brahms recital from three of Harmonia Mundi's most sensitive and interesting artists.
The programming alone is a work of art: the idea of pairing the viola versions of Brahms's two autumnal Op. 120 Clarinet Sonatas inspired by Meiningen Orchestra clarinettist Richard Mühlfeld, with three further softly intimate works of his showcasing the viola's similarities with the human voice – viola and piano arrangements of Nachtigall from the six Op. 97 Songs (extra resonant, when Brahms described Mühlfeld as the nightingale of the orchestra) and the famous Op. 49 Wiegenlied, followed by the Op. 91 Zwei Gesänge for Voice, Viola and Piano.

Then there's the instruments, because for Tamestit and Tiberghien these are just as important to the music's alchemy as the abilities of the performers, and their quest to find the perfect match for the penetrating, multi-shaded tones of Tamestit's Stradivarius viola eventually led them to an 1899 Bechstein piano. The result was two instruments capable of a range of colours and roundness of sound across all registers and through even the most virtuosic of passages; and that's precisely what you hear across the resultant lyrically tender, natural-feeling readings, because beyond the hand in glove chamber partnering you're hearing, their respective tones are both alive with colouristic complexities and verily glowing.
Then, beyond being simply delicious, the vocal quality Tamestit draws out from the famous Wiegenlied melody serves as the perfect overture to the programme's Zwei Gesänge – shaped icing on the cake – yet another perfect combination, Tamestit's lines lovingly encircling and dovetailing with Goerne's own richly warm, gentle baritone, the polished Teldex Studio engineering casting them on satisfyingly equal footings with each other, with the piano just slightly behind.

In short, absolutely gorgeous. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz

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