Johann Christian (1697-1754) and Johann Wilhelm (1727-1789) were a father and son combination, who although directly related, were somewhat different in style and content as the works on this disc amply demonstrate.
J.C. was Duke Adolph Friedrich's court music director, and demands were high, especially when the Duke's birthday was the occasion. The composer's father duly obliged though, with some smashing virtuosic pieces for 3 trumpets and a timpani corps which kept his employer happy and satisfied.
The 2 sinfonias in D recorded here are 2 such creations, both full of celebratory opulence and technical brilliance which should certainly captivate and delight. JW, in contrast to his father, ventured beyond the baroque mentality and embraced the latest developments. In the 3 concertos on this disc, the soloist is given free reign for cantabile playing with the virtuosic element being slightly sidelined.
Nonetheless the mellow and slim sound of the trumpet shines with a gorgeous beauty that continues to inspire performers and listeners alike. Bauer's precocity for his instrument is unquestionable and under his direction, the works indeed take on a new lease of life. The orchestra from Baden Württemberg is also a fine ensemble, deeply steeped in the German baroque tradition. All in all, a fine disc which is almost self recommending.
Copyright © 2008 by Gerald Fenech