Telemann: Melodious canons & Fantasias

Elysium Ensemble (Greg Dikmans flute, Lucinda Moon violin)
59:13
resonus RES10207
TWV 40:7, 13, 20, 118-123

The two instruments found on this recording were among those Telemann instinctively took up in his pre-teen days without any formal knowledge of music; what heights he would later reach. After some biographical details, the CD booklet rightly settles on Quantz, for in this composer’s Solfeggi  over 30 works are found including these “Melodic Canons” (TWV40:118-123) which were published during his sojourn in Paris, also known as his VI Sonates en Duo, for Flutes, Violins, or Gambas. Usually, we hear these on two violins, yet they have also previously been recorded on two flutes, and a combination of flute and oboe; here we have violin and flute taking on the canonic lines. With the flute used here, a copy of a Quantz instrument (c.1740) with two keys, we encounter the lower pitch (A= 392/400, so-called Tief-Kammerton) which does affect the brightness of these works, and slower tempi than usual are applied, resulting in elegant, measured readings. The chosen Fantasias for flute  (Nos. 6 and 12 in D minor and G minor respectively) again expose us to this lower, darker pitch. Perhaps the fine, nimble violinist could have had another Fantasia to close the disc? At just under an hour, the recording offers an alternative route through these neatly crafted pieces. Though not new to our ears, they take a novel approach; a pleasant recap.

David Bellinger