One of the most grown-up review sites around

51,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

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

Some items
to consider


Reger Violin Sonatas
Renate Eggebrecht violin

Brahms Symphony 3
Dvorak Symphony 8
9 cello sonatas
Piano Music

Clara Schumann
piano concerto

Asmik Grigorian

Breathtaking Performance
controversial staging
Review Westbrook
Review Hedley
Every lover of Salome should see this recording
Mullenger interpretation

Vraiment magnifique!

Quite splendid

Winning performances

Mahler Symphony 8
a magnificent disc

a huge talent

A wonderful disc

Weinberg Symphonies 2 & 21
A handsome tribute!

Roth’s finest Mahler yet

Mahler 9 Blomstedt
Distinguished performance


REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

Support us financially by purchasing this from

The Clarinotts
Ernst, Daniel, Andreas Ottensamer (clarinets)
Wiener Virtuosen
Christoph Traxler, František Jánoška (piano)
Full track-listing giving at the end of the review
rec. 1, 3, 5 May 2014, Casino Baumgarten, Vienna

This is Andreas Ottensamer’s third album on Deutsche Grammophon; a review of the second can be found here. This time he is playing alongside his father and brother, both of whom also play the clarinet. Father Ernst Ottensamer has been a Principal Clarinet with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra since 1983. Brothers Daniel and Andreas are principal clarinets with the Vienna Philharmonic and Berlin Philharmonic respectively. This father-and-sons team formalized their special ensemble in 2005 as “The Clarinotts”, and this is the ensemble’s first album on Mercury Classics/Deutsche Grammophon. For those of you who watched the 2016 Vienna New Year’s Concert, you would have seen The Clarinotts perform as part of the intermission feature.

The pieces featured on this album involve a mixture of arrangements and one newly commissioned piece. Daniel and Andreas grew up hearing father Ernst in the pit of the Vienna State Opera before they joined the same institution; Andreas has since left. Their life-long experience with and for operas is shown through the four opera-themed selections on this disc.

The disc opens with Mendelssohn’s Concert Piece for Clarinet, Basset Horn and Orchestra No.1 Op. 113, written for the father-and-son clarinet duo of Heinrich and Carl Baermann. This arrangement was made by prolific arranger Rainer Schottstädt, who also made the arrangements for the Doppler and Jean Françaix pieces featured here.

Two operatic arrangements follow: trio “Soave si il vento” from Mozart’s Così fan tutte, and of the Doppler brothers’ Fantasy on Themes from Verdi’s Rigoletto, originally composed for two flutes and piano. Two more works by operatic composers round out the selection of music from the 19th century. Rossini’s La Danza has been sung/played by countless performers in various arrangements over the years. Here it is prefaced by the Ranz des Vaches from the Overture to William Tell in an arrangement made for The Clarinotts. Ponchielli’s Il Convegno was originally written for two solo clarinets with band accompaniment, here played in The Clarinotts’ own arrangement for two clarinets and strings.

The 20th and 21st century items start with the second movement of Jean Françaix’s Petit Quatuor (1935) for saxophones, Cantilène, which is a slow waltz. The longest work on this disc, Bela Koreny’s Cinema 1, is a captivating piece based on the plot of the film Basic Instinct, and was dedicated to The Clarinotts. Luiz Bonfa’s Manhã de Carnaval is a sultry 'bossa nova' that owes its popularity to its appearance in the 1959 Brazilian-themed film Orfeu Negro. Closing the disc is a short but virtuosic work The Chase by Olivier Truan for two clarinets. This provides plenty of opportunities for the Ottensamer brothers to show off their impeccable technique.

On this album, brothers Daniel and Andreas alternate on the first part, while father Ernst takes the lowest part on basset horn or bass clarinet. The clarinets they play are the Viennese type which produce a particularly dark, expansive and warm tone. This has a wider bore than the closely-related German-system instrument; the predominant type outside German-speaking land is the French-system. The tones of the three Ottensamers are well-matched and blend very well. They display impeccable technique and genuine enjoyment in the music-making.

The 28-page booklet contains numerous glossy photos of The Clarinotts. The essay by Warwick Thompson, written in English and translated into German and French, is the fruit of an interview with Andreas Ottensamer, and gives lots of insider information on The Clarinotts as well background about the pieces.

Wai Kit Leung

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809 - 1847)
Konzertstück op.113 for Clarinet, Basset Horn and Orchestra arr. Rainer Schottstädt
1. Allegro con fuoco [2:28]
2. Andante [2:55]
3. Presto [2:23]
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791)
Così fan tutte, K.588
4. "Soave si il vento" [2:55]
Albert Franz DOPPLER (1821 - 1883), Karl DOPPLER (1825 - 1900)
5. Fantasy on Themes from Verdi's "Rigoletto" arr. Rainer Schottstädt [10:01]
Gioacchino ROSSINI (1792 - 1868)
6. La Danza arr. Erich Schagerl for The Clarinotts [4:36]
Amilcare PONCHIELLI (1834 - 1886)
7. Il Convegno, Op.76 arr. The Clarinotts [9:54]
Jean FRANÇAIX (1912 - 1997)
Petit Quatuor pour Saxophones
8. Cantilène (2nd movement) (arr. Rainer Schottstädt) [2:28]
9. Cinema 1 [10:26]
Luiz BONFA (1922 - 2001)
10. Manhã de Carnaval arr. The Clarinotts [5:40]
Olivier TRUAN
11. The Chase [3:04]



We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

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
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger