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Stefan Temmingh The Gentleman´s Flute OC 772 CD
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FormatAudio CD
Ordering NumberOC 772
Barcode4260034867727
labelOehmsClassics
Release date02.09.2010
salesrank4491
Players/ContributorsMusicians Composer
  • Händel, Georg Friedrich

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      The Gentleman´s Flute


      Handel arias in 18th century arrangements for recorder and basso continuo: Alcina · Amidi di Gaula · Giulio Cesare · Rinaldo · Alexander Balus · Saul · Sonata in G minor
      Stefan Temmingh, recorder · Olga Mishula, psaltery Olga Watts, harpsichord · Domen Marinc?ic?, viola da gamba Lyndon Watts, Baroque bassoon · Axel Wolf, lute & theorbo Loredana Gintoli, Baroque harp


      After extensive background studies in London’s daily life during the baroque era, Stefan Temmingh decided to dedicate his new CD to the Handel enthusiasm of higher eighteenth-century British circles. Anyone who wanted to be considered a “gentleman” had to play the recorder. As opposed to this, the harpsichord was more an instrument for “ladies”. What wonderful opportunities for interaction this resulted in! The arias of the respectively newest Handel operas were analogous to pop hits, and were played in all conceivable arrangements. The demands on instrumental virtuosity were amazing – and even today, all possible skill is required of recorder players for them to render these pieces with any sort of adequacy. In the manner of the English music-making salons, Stefan Temmingh has gathered various musician-friends and colleagues in order to revive this fascinating repertoire for the recorder. They have followed him with great joy on the journey to baroque London, a city in Handel-fever.

      Stefan Temmingh recorder
      Ensemble Olga Mishula (psaltery) · Olga Watts (harpsichord) Domen Marincˇicˇ (viola da gamba) · Lyndon Watts (baroque bassoon) Axel Wolf (lute & theorbo) · Loredana Gintoli (baroque harp)

      Instruments:
      Descant recorder in c’’: Andreas Schwob after early baroque models (13)
      Descant recorder in c’’: Heinz Amman after Reich (1, 10, 14)
      Fourth flute in b’’: Ralf Ehlert after Bressan (2, 8, 11)
      Alto recorder in g’: Ernst Meyer after Bressan (4, 19)
      2 alto recorders in f ’: Ernst Meyer after Denner (1, 12)
      Alto recorder in e’: Ernst Meyer after Bressan (5)
      Alto recorder in e’ flat: Ernst Meyer after Bressan (3, 15–18)
      Voice flute in d’: Ernst Meyer after Bressan (6, 20)

      Psaltery in g: Klemens Kleitsch after 18th century Italian baroque models (4, 13, 14, 19)

      Harpsichord: Christian Kuhlmann, Bremen, after Henri Hemsch, 1751 (1, 2, 5, 6, 10, 12–19)

      Viola da gamba: Peter Erben, Munich 1998, after Nicholas Bertrang (2, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12)

      Baroque bassoon: Peter de Koningh after Eichentopf (1, 12, 15–19)

      Theorbo: Günter Mark, Elsa 2000, after Tieffenbrucker (1, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 13, 19)
      Lute: Klaus Toft Jacobsen, London 1993, after Tieffenbrucker/Edlinger (5, 7)
      Lute: Hendrik Hasenfuss, Kürten 1993, after Raillich (2, 3, 12)

      Baroque harp: Dario Pontigia, 2009, after an Arpa Barberini, 17th century (1, 3, 9–12, 20)

      STEFAN TEMMINGH on “THE GENTLEMAN’S FLUTE”
      It was the must-have accessory of baroque London. A true Gentleman, wrote John Hawkins in 1776, should never go out without his recorder. Quite apart from everything else, it was a sure-fire way to impress the ladies. Ladies, explains Stefan Temmingh, played keyboard instruments. When opera transcriptions were published for the harpsichord in 18th-century London, it was as “The Lady’s Accompaniment.” When recorder editions hit the market, it was most definitely for the men. And what better way to pass the time with the damsel of your choice than by running through the latest Handel opera hits together? “You have to see it in the baroque context,” explains Temmingh. “There was no television, there were no CDs, there were no cinemas. You could read books, but that’s hard to do together actively. Music was one of the few things you could really engage in as a group. And drinking, of course! But people often liked to combine both activities – there are plenty of accounts of musical drinking parties.”

      In the first half of the 18th century, London was in the grip of a feverish opera craze. Everything Italian was fashionable, but nothing induced quite as much thrill as the premiere of a new Handel opera. There was no division between classical and popular music. Handel’s favourite arias were the hits of the day. And the baroque equivalent of the digital release of the newest songs was the publication of opera transcriptions for the recorder.

      “If you wanted to hear ‘Lascia ch’io pianga’ again, you couldn’t put on a recording,” Temmingh says, “but you could play it on your recorder.” As little as a week after the opening of a new Handel opera, his publisher Walsh would advertise in the popular London press that the recorder edition of the work was now available for purchase in his shop. The hastily-produced versions sold like hot cakes, even though some of them were rough, simplistic, and full of mistakes, says Temmingh.

      Print runs of opera transcripts of operas were considerably larger than those of recorder sonatas, even though the parts were more technically demanding.

      “The recorder parts in the Handel sonatas hardly ever exceed an octave and a fifth. They are easy to sight-read. The opera transcriptions often span two octaves and more – they belong to the more elevated, demanding literature. You’d have to be quite good to play these pieces,” Temmingh says. But your average amateur probably played remarkably well:

      “You have to bear in mind that for the aristocrats of the time, music was an essential part of a general education. And it was a very different kind of education from that of today. Players learned to compose their own music from the very beginning.”

      The more money you had, the more music lessons you could afford. Musical proficiency was a mark of social achievement; the better you could play, the better it made you look.

      “It was a status symbol. And these amateurs were specialists in a way that nobody can be today. They would have played Handel, a bit of Corelli, perhaps some Pepusch. The oldest music you would have known was Purcell, and that was that. Today we have to read hundreds of treatises to develop some sort of idea of how Handel would have sounded back then. But they knew exactly how Rinaldo sounded, for example, because they would have heard it at the premiere conducted by Handel himself. They probably played it phenomenally well.”

      For Temmingh, the idea of releasing a CD of recorder transcripts of Handel opera arias was born from his research into the habits of baroque London, coupled with his own passionate love of the genre. “The Gentleman’s Flute” is a compilation evolved from the idea of a musical party in London, transposed to Temmingh’s circle of musician friends.

      “Of course, a contributing factor was that nobody had done it before now,” he admits. “For the main part, we did it in order to have fun making music together.

      “In London, there were Musical Associations, where amateurs got together to play with professionals. They had motto parties. And we can’t rule out that one might have been a Rinaldo party.”

      Together with harpsichordist Olga Watts, Temmingh chose an overture, various arias, some dances and a sonata which most appealed to him in the new context. After a thorough examination of the Walsh transcriptions, similar editions of the time and the original scores of Handel’s operas, Temmingh made new arrangements of the selected pieces for his ensemble.

      “Of course we listened to a wide range of things, but our final decisions were really spontaneous. They are our own versions, completely new.”

      Given that the voice is such a strong and expressive instrument, isn’t it dangerous to play Handel with the recorder? Comparisons seem inevitable.



      “Sylvestro Ganassi wrote in 1635 that the recorder is probably the instrument that is closest to the human voice. And he was right,” argues Temmingh. “You can put it in your mouth and blow, you feel the air flow and a sound is formed in direct contact with the instrument. The recorder can produce a huge variety of sounds and – like the human voice – you can also be very expressive and articulate with it. Of course there are certain limitations. To play very loud or very soft is difficult on the recorder, and quite easy for the voice – but this is exactly what I see as an exciting challenge.”

      In baroque London, an oboist by the name of Jean Christian Kytch won a huge following for his concerts of opera arias performed on the oboe.

      “People liked it,” says Temmingh. “He became the leading player in the capital.

      “It’s also important to mention that Handel often quoted his operas in his recorder sonatas. For example, the first movement of the B-flat major Sonata is a part of the overture for Scipione. Or again, the first phrase in the last movement of the G minor Sonata which we recorded here is also used as the main theme for an aria in Agrippina. And the same phrase can be found in two of his organ concertos.

      “Handel did a lot of this so-called self-borrowing. You could say that transcribing arias for the recorder is completely legitimate in terms of his own compositional practices.

      “What we have done is to re-arrange Handel according to the sources of the time for soloist recorder and basso continuo without the usual orchestra which, of course, would not have fitted into their living rooms. So new pieces are born and the arias are presented in completely new versions.”

      Among the key sources for Temmingh and his team were the transcriptions of William Babell, Handel’s harpsichordist: “They are incredibly interesting, because they include ornamentation. Some of Babell’s ornaments are absolutely outrageous. And we’ve used them. Of course we have our own crazy ideas, but the craziest ideas of all always come from the sources.”

      Temmingh assembled the instruments for the recording on the basis of his musician friends, his preferred sound world, and the concept of “house music”. In a line-up of recorder, harp, harpsichord, viola da gamba, bassoon, lute, and psaltery, the last instrument is obviously the odd one out in the context of Handel’s London.

      “For me, the psaltery has an exciting and sparkling sound quality – Vivaldi, for example, used it in his operas,” Temmingh explains. “Some enthusiast might have possessed one even in 18th century London.”

      The relocation of a London house music party based around Handel’s opera arias into a modern concert setting is entirely in the spirit of the baroque age, says Temmingh.

      “That’s what early music is. You look at how it would have been then. You read the source material very thoroughly. You look at the context and translate it for today and the circumstances of the moment. It’s 300 years later, but it’s exactly the same. They came together in London to play Rinaldo and we do the same in Munich. I hope our listeners will have as much fun as we have making the music.”

      Übersetzung: Corinna Kübler


      Olga Mishula

      Olga Mishula (psaltery) was born in Belarus and studied tsymbaly with Tatyana Petrovna Sergeyenko at the Minsk Music Academy and from 1996 dulcimer and psaltery with several teachers including Karl-Heinz Schickhaus at the Munich Conservatoire. She has won first and second prizes in various competitions.

      Olga Mishula performs in Germany and abroad and appears with the orchestras of the following cities: Hof, Solingen, Berlin and Munich, as well as with the Ensemble Modern and various other ensembles. Her repertoire includes works from the baroque, classical and romantic eras as well as contemporary music and jazz.
      www.olga-mishula.de

      Olga Watts Olga Watts (harpsichord) was born in Moscow and studied piano and musicology at the conservatoire of Moscow. She continued her studies at the Hochschule für Musik in Munich with Prof. Lars Ulrik Mortensen and Prof. Christine Schornsheim. She is a prize winner of several international Early Music competitions. Olga Watts is a renowned specialist in the field of continuo and chamber music and a regular guest at international festivals and with several European chamber orchestras. She teaches at the Musikhochschule Munich.

      Domen Marincic

      Domen Marincic (viola da gamba) was born in Slovenia. He studied viola da gamba with Hartwig Groth in Nuremberg and with Philippe Pierlot at the Musikhochschule in Trossingen. In 1997 he won the first prize at the first “Bach- Abel” competition in Koethen. He has appeared in renowned festivals all throughout Europe. He was, for many years, a member of the Belgian ensemble Ricercar Consort, is a founding member of the Ensemble Phoenix Munich and has also worked in various CD productions. Since 2005 he has been lecturing at Ljubljana University in the musicology department.

      Lyndon Watts Lyndon Watts (baroque bassoon) has been solo bassoonist with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra since 1998. The Australian musician studied the bassoon from 1994–2000 with Eberhard Marschall at the Musikhochschule in Munich and the baroque bassoon from 2001–2005 with Alberto Grazzi in Verona. In 2002 he won the third prize for bassoon in the ARD International Music Competition.

      Lyndon Watts is a sought-after soloist and chamber musician in both modern and baroque bassoon and plays with various ensembles for the historical practices of performance, such as L’Orfeo, Concerto Copenhagen, Ensemble moderntimes_ 1800 and Ensemble Philidor. In October 2005 he took over a bassoon lectureship at the Academy of Arts in Bern.
      www.lyndonwatts.com

      Axel Wolf

      Axel Wolf (lute) is a freelance musician based near Munich in Bavaria, Germany. He is a regular guest at international festivals in cities such as in Bruges, Utrecht, Edinburgh, Tokyo and New York, both as a soloist and member of ensembles including the Freiburger Barockorchester, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment or The English Concert. He has worked with conductors such as Ivor Bolton, Harry Bicket, Alan Curtis, Paul McCreesh and Joshua Rifkin in opera, concert and CD productions. Axel Wolf was a lecturer at the Academy of Music and Theater Hanover from 1986 until 2003.
      www.laute.net

      Loredana Gintoli

      Loredana Gintoli (baroque harp) studied at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatoire in Milan and was awarded a Doctorate at the Music Academy in Freiburg in 1991. She immediately began her collaboration with the orchestra of the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Basel Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra Sinfonica Arturo Toscanini. In 1994 she achieved a diploma in baroque harp with Mara Galassi at the Civica Scuola di Musica in Milan after which she appeared as a soloist throughout Europe with various ensembles for Early Music, including Les Musiciens du Louvre, Concerto Vocale, Concerto Italiano and Accademia Bizantina. She plays concerts at many international festivals in cities such as Bruges, Paris, London, Goettingen, Cremona and Aixen- Provence. Loredana Gintoli teaches baroque harp at the Conservatorio Dall’Abaco in Verona.

      Tracklist hide

      CD 1
      • 1.Rinaldo for a Flute | Overture05:35
      • 1.Rinaldo for a Flute | Overture05:35
      • 2.Alcina for a Flute | Tornami a vagheggiar04:26
      • 2.Alcina for a Flute | Tornami a vagheggiar04:26
      • 3.Giulio Cesare in Egitto for a Flute | V’adoro, pupille04:10
      • 3.Giulio Cesare in Egitto for a Flute | V’adoro, pupille04:10
      • 4.Rinaldo for a Flute | Il vostro maggio02:30
      • 4.Rinaldo for a Flute | Il vostro maggio02:30
      • 5.Alcina for a Flute | Verdi prati03:56
      • 5.Alcina for a Flute | Verdi prati03:56
      • 6.Un momento di contento04:25
      • 6.Un momento di contento04:25
      • 7.Musette01:34
      • 7.Musette01:34
      • 8.Credete al mio dolore03:32
      • 8.Credete al mio dolore03:32
      • 9.Saul | Sinfonia01:53
      • 9.Saul | Sinfonia01:53
      • 10.Alcina for a Flute | Di te mi rido04:21
      • 10.Alcina for a Flute | Di te mi rido04:21
      • 11.Rinaldo for a Flute | Lascia ch’io pianga05:24
      • 11.Rinaldo for a Flute | Lascia ch’io pianga05:24
      • 12.Sulla ruota di fortuna02:57
      • 12.Sulla ruota di fortuna02:57
      • 13.Amadigi di Gaula | Tu mia speranza03:12
      • 13.Amadigi di Gaula | Tu mia speranza03:12
      • 14.Rinaldo for a Flute | Bel piacere02:02
      • 14.Rinaldo for a Flute | Bel piacere02:02
      • 15.Sonata in G minor | Larghetto02:32
      • 15.Sonata in G minor | Larghetto02:32
      • 16.Andante03:15
      • 16.Andante03:15
      • 17.Adagio01:02
      • 17.Adagio01:02
      • 18.Presto01:54
      • 18.Presto01:54
      • 19.Rinaldo for a Flute | Venti Turbini02:43
      • 19.Rinaldo for a Flute | Venti Turbini02:43
      • 20.Alexander Balus | Convey me to some peaceful shore01:56
      • 20.Alexander Balus | Convey me to some peaceful shore01:56
      • Total:02:06:38