One of the most grown-up review sites around
One of the most grown-up review sites around

Search MusicWeb Here
 

 

International mailing

Up to 40% off

  Founder: Len Mullenger

Some items
to consider

  • Sammartini: 6 Concerti grossi
  • Henze Kammermusik 1958
  • Mozart Flute Quartets
  • Schubert complete piano works
  • Sammartini: 6 Concerti grossi
  • Henze Kammermusik 1958



CD and Blue-ray Audio


CD and Blue-ray Audio


CPE Bach Cantatas
a revelation


Biber: Sacred Choral Works
Don't miss it


Jonathan Dove


Tommie Haglund
Unique and Powerful music


Organ Fireworks


Highly Entertaining


A triumphant performance


Bruckner Symphony 4
One of the finest I have heard


A most joy-inducing recording


A winning partnership


A Lohengrin to treasure.

 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones & printers


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb



Donate and get a free CD

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical



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

Sample: See what you will get

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

Support us financially by purchasing this disc from
Heitor VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959)
Five preludes for guitar, W419 [26:21]
Guitar concerto, W502 [20:31]
Melodia Sentimental, W555 (arr. Chmielarz) [3:47]
Krzysztof Meisinger (guitar)
Andrew Haveron (violin) (Melodia)
Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields/José Maria Florencio
rec. November 2011, Abbey Road Studio 1, London
FUGA LIBERA FUG599 [50:39]

Guitarist Krzysztof Meisinger, making his first appearance on an international record label, chooses the music of Villa-Lobos. It’s a surprisingly apt choice, since the Polish Meisinger is fascinated by South American music: he has played in a band modeled after Ástor Piazzolla’s. He has also participated in master-classes with Piazzolla’s favored guitarist, Pablo Ziegler. Meisinger’s way with the five Villa-Lobos Preludes is like nobody else’s.

Specifically, Meisinger allows the slower preludes (Nos. 1, 3) to develop at their own pace, slowing down to gently capture the full potential of the “Lyric Melody,” or to expand the “Homage to Bach” into a sarabande of great poignancy. There’s no stinting on the faster stuff - it’s hard to imagine a more evocative portrait of the “hustler” - but, for instance, compare Meisinger’s timing in the Bach homage with Norbert Kraft’s on Naxos: Kraft takes 3:06, Meisinger 7:31. The difference to the ear is substantial; Kraft's performance holds together much better, a consistent and structurally sound product, while Meisinger’s, more liable to muse, fuss around with phrases, and generally put its nose into the roses, might be favored by those who want something more meditative or “evocative.” It's strange, but in a way that's interesting rather than perverse.
 
The Guitar Concerto gets a more conventional reading, but no less distinguished. Meisinger’s joined by the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, who sound like they’re bunched around the microphones but thankfully the score itself is very clear and their contributions all go well-noticed. Here there’s again competition from Norbert Kraft among others, although maybe it’s me but I find it hard to really fault any recording of such a charming, un-muck-up-able piece. The Melodia sentimental is a gorgeous encore destined for radio airtime and maybe a role in a film.
 
This is to be welcomed, then, if you can get past two hurdles: the short playing time (50 minutes) and Meisinger’s eccentricity. As far as I’m concerned, both are okay, especially with performances distinctive enough that Villa-Lobos fans will love to hear them and assess the music anew.
 
Brian Reinhart