Telemann: The trio sonatas for recorder and viola da gamba

CD cover Telemann The trio sonatas for recorder and viola da gamba

Erik Bosgraaf recorder, voice flute & alto chalumeau, Carl Rosman, tenor chalumeau, Lucile Boulanger & Robert Smith gambas, Alessandro Pianu harpsichord/organ
56:55
Brilliant Classics 96393

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Any CD bringing recorder works by Telemann to our attention will have to surpass merely going through the motions! There are swathes and piles already in our collections, in various compilations going back quite a while. Indeed, these very sonatas featured on an excellent Brilliant Classics five-CD box set (94831) by ensemble Opera Prima under Cristiano Contadin, “Complete Concertos and Sonatas with gamba” (Highly recommended!). Fortunately, here we are in safe hands, or rather fingers, as the gifted Dutch recorder player, Erik Bosgraaf, displays an enviable mellifluence and proficiency! The German adjectives “flink” and “geschliffen” (nimble and refined) came to mind as we enjoyed some familiar encounters, yet these were given just the right measure of spice and élan, with some superb transitions of mood and tempo. Track 13’s Largo to 14’s superb Allegro in TWV42:g9, and again from TWV42:d7’s Adagio into its slick Allegro. The technical assurance here is obvious, as the rich, accommodating acoustic of the Kruiskerk in Bergum which lends its own magic. Never over-stressed or ostentatious, the playing is truly admirable and in those moments of rustic Polishness just the right amount of gusto is applied!

The two nicely chosen extras make this a well-rounded recording; the quartet TWV43:G10, usually two bass viols and transverse flute, here tackled on the “voice flute” (tenor recorder in D) which adds a slight tonal twist without transposing requirement. As is typical in many of Telemann’s instrumental pieces, the “replying” and “counter-replying” themes bounce along merrily in lively, elegant dialogue!

The final item is a delight to hear, a double-chalumeaux work, done in such a warm, playful and spirited way, Bosgraaf takes the alto chalumeau and Carl Rosman the tenor. The delightful Gigue rounds off a most entertaining CD that feels ideally suited for all settings, wrapped in a lush church acoustic for welcome tonal warmth.

David Bellinger