Sextet Op. 33 in E minor (41:04)
Octet Op. 73 in G Major (35:35)
Oliver Triendl, pianist
Felix Weingartner, known to recorded classical music fans until now only as a conductor, (and perhaps also as the orchestrator of the Beethoven Hammerklavier Sonata, Op. 106) had nevertheless written an impressive number of compositions. Among his works are seven symphonies, overtures, operas, tone poems, five string quartets and other chamber music. It is almost unbelievable that these works have been so long neglected!
This Sextet, scored for piano, two violins, viola, cello and double bass, is performed by the Ensemble Acht members – Christoph Schickendanz, Annette Fehrmann, Antonia Siegers, Ingo Zander, and Stephan Schäfer, plus pianist Oliver Triendl.
The first movement is an exciting and voluptuous waltz with a second theme reminiscent of a very tender melody from Richard Strauss' Death and Transfiguration. The scherzo-like second movement is delightfully mysterious. The more somber third movement "in the style of an improvisation" and the "funeral dance" of the last movement round out this impressive, richly scored, melodious, expressive, and dramatic work.
Also not to be missed on this disc: the Octet Op. 73 for clarinet, horn, bassoon, two violins, viola, cello and piano. Especially recommended are the variations in the second movement.
I am very grateful to CPO for bringing so many of Weingartner's previously neglected compositions to us. His is a very important Late Romantic voice.