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Zemlinsky: Cello Sonata; Three Pieces for Cello and Piano; Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Piano

Zemlinsky: Cello Sonata; Three Pieces for Cello and Piano; Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Piano

Othmar Muller Cello

CD: 1
Tracks: 9
Length: 1:04:23

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Naxos
Rel. 29 Apr 2008
Recorded 2007

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Zemlinsky: Cello Sonata; Three Pieces for Cello and Piano; Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Piano These three early cello works by Austrian composer Alexander Zemlinsky are perfectly acceptable examples of conservative German late-Romanticism. The lightest work of the three is the earliest, the Three Pieces for cello and piano from 1891 with its three movements cast in the intimate style of the mature Schumann. The Sonata in A minor from 1894 is a much more strenuous work written in the stormy style of the young Brahms. Perhaps the best of the three is the Trio in D minor from 1896, which adds a clarinet to the cello and piano. With its passionate tone and heavy textures, Zemlinsky's Trio is close enough in manner and matter to Brahms' Trio for the same instrumental combination from five years earlier to share the work's heightened expressivity.

Though none of these works are particularly characteristic of the mature Zemlinsky, these Austrian performances make a strong case for them. Cellist Othmar Müller has a rich tone and a strong technique, and he knows how to phrase Zemlinsky's big tunes for maximum cogency, shaping the sonata's opening Mit Leidenschaft so its long line coheres over its entire 10-minute length. Pianist Christopher Hinterhuber proves as much a partner as an accompanist, molding his playing around Müller's without compromising the integrity of his own part. In the Trio, clarinetist Ernst Ottensamer adds more than an autumnal tone to the ensemble; he adds another articulate voice to the conversation. Listeners unfamiliar with Zemlinsky's music might find later works like Die Seejungfrau or Lyrische Symphonie more representative of the mature composer, but listeners who already know the mature composer may find these three works interesting. Recorded in Liszt Hall in Raiding, Austria, in 2007, Naxos' sound is clear and clean, but a bit thin and a tad distant.

© James Leonard, All Music Guide
Portions of Content Provided by All Music Guide.
© 2008 All Media Guide, LLC. All Music Guide is a registered trademark of All Media Guide, LLC.
AMG
CD 1
1 1.Humoreske 2:59
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2 2.Lied 3:27
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3 3.Tarantell 1:38
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4 Mit Leidenschaft: Allegro 9:58
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5 Andante 9:13
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6 Allegretto 8:24
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7 1.Allegro ma non troppo 13:29
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8 2.Andante 9:28
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9 3.Allegro 5:47
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