One of the most grown-up review sites around

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Senior Editor: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

in the first division

extraordinary by any standards

An excellent disc

a new benchmark

summation of a lifetime’s experience.

Piano Concertos 1 and 2
Surprise Best Seller and now

A Garland for John McCabe


DIETHELM Symphonies

The best Rite of Spring in Years

BACH Magnificat

Brian Symphs 8, 21, 26

Just enjoy it!

La Mer Ticciati







Plain text for smartphones & printers

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Senior Editor
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Support us financially by purchasing this disc from
Johann Simon MAYR (1763-1845)
Concerto in D minor, for flute, clarinet, basset horn, piccolo and orchestra (1820) [24:57]
Keyboard Concerto in C (c.1800) [16:17]
Trio Concertante in A minor, for three violins and orchestra (c.1820) [12:09]
Natalie Schwaabe (flute, piccolo)
Andrea Steinberg (clarinet, basset horn)
Antonio Spiller, Yi Li, David van Dijk (violins)
Bavarian Classical Players / Franz Hauk (harpsichord)
rec. Neues Schloss, Fahnensaal, Ingolstadt, Germany, 19-22 September 2007. DDD
NAXOS 8.570927 [53:36]

German composer (Johann) Simon Mayr is best known today for his important role in the development of opera seria, particularly in Italy, where he spent much of his life and indeed taught Donizetti. His instrumental music remains relatively unknown, which is quite a pity: this recording highlights his ability to write attractive music of superior craftsmanship and no little inspiration.
Mayr was a prominent figure in Bergamo, which accounts for the title of the concerto that starts things off. As the accompanying notes make clear, 'Concerto Bergamasco' is not Mayr's title, which was the more prosaic 'Concerto per Flauto, Clarinetto, Corno Bassetto ed Ottavino'. It comes instead from its first appearance in print as late as 1978, "with some retouching by Heinrich Bauer." Nor is it a quadruple concerto exactly: as an orchestrator Mayr was something of an experimenter, and here he takes the unusual step of assigning a movement to each instrument - in Mayr's day all intended to be played by its dedicatee, the multi-soloist Giovanni Sangiovanni. The final movement, where all four instruments appear, is especially memorable, but the whole concerto is packed with lyrical delight. The chipper, colourful Haydnesque Concerto in C for harpsichord - the instrument indicated by the autograph, despite the late date - and the Trio Concertante for three violins, itself reminiscent at times of Mozart's violin concertos, contribute their own idiomatic pleasures to a programme of wide and enduring appeal.
The Bavarian Classical Players are all members of the illustrious Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Franz Hauk is a veteran of many recordings for Naxos, all but one of Mayr's (choral) music. All the musicians featured here play with commendable verve and precision. Sound quality is good - not always a given in recordings originating in Germany. Appropriately it was made at Ingolstadt in Bavaria, near to where Mayr was born. Conductor/harpsichordist Franz Hauk's notes are informative, well written and well translated. The only blot as far as this disc is concerned is the short running time, but that should not deter anyone appreciative of late-Classical musical elegance and invention.
Collected reviews and contact at
see also reviews by Dan Morgan (September 2012 Recording of the Month) and John Sheppard