SOUNDS OF AMERICA
Oboist Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida and colleagues after recording ‘Silver and Gold’, her new disc on Crystal Records repertoire, such as Vladimir Horowitz’s elaborate reworking of the Gypsy Dance from Carmen and Earl Wild’s captivating études tweaking Gershwin’s ‘Embraceable you’ and ‘Fascinatin’ rhythm’.
Among the other delights are Poulenc’s ‘Hommage à Edith Piaf’, two Brahms Hungarian Dances, a shortened version of Milhaud’s Le boeuf sur le toit (four-hand) and vivid pieces by Ginastera, Lecuona and Piazzolla. The 20 selections also include two so-called ‘encores’ (which most of these short offerings could be considered): ‘Over the rainbow’ and ‘Moon river’, in silken performances by the centre’s founder and director, Min Kwon.
Then again, everyone who sits at the Fazioli piano for this celebration shows a heightened affinity for the music at hands and feet: Erikson Rojas, haunting and flexible in three Lecuona selections; Soyeon Park, luxuriant in Wild’s Gershwin études; Carl Patrick Bolleia, savouring the novel harmonic flights in Rzewski’s Down by the Riverside; Reed Tetzloff, ebullient in the snazzy flourishes of Kapustin’s Variations, Op 41; and Ming Xie, a dynamo in the virtuoso Horowitz Carmen brainstorm. Donald Rosenberg
‘Silver and Gold’ Arnold Oboe Quartet, Op 61a Moricz Three Consequences for Four Playersb Reinecke Trio, Op 188c Wunderer Oboe Sonata, Op 3d Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida ob bcWilliam Caballero hn aNoah Bendix-Balgley vn aMeng Wang va ab David Premo vc cdMarina Schmidt Lupinacci, b Rodrigo Ojeda pf Crystal Records F CD825 (76’ • DDD)
The cover of Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida’s winning new recording shows the oboist in a silverygolden dress, with instrument in hand, next to the words ‘Silver and Gold’. The title comes from a Welsh poem about friends new and old: ‘One is silver and the other is gold’. The sentiment extends from the colleagues who join DeAlmeida to the music by old and new composers they perform so expressively.
The disc’s three European composers may not be household names but their works speak in distinctive languages. Viennese-born Alexander Wunderer’s
Sonata in B minor for oboe and piano is tender and playful in a Romantic world not far removed from Schumann and Brahms.
In a similarly sweeping vein is the German composer Carl Reinecke’s Trio in A minor for oboe, horn and piano, an unusual complement that allows for intriguing shadings within the heartfelt writing. An entirely different character pervades Malcolm Arnold’s Quartet for oboe, violin, viola and cello, which is full of peppy and mysterious episodes that show this versatile English composer at his intimate best. The sole living composer is an American, Michael Moricz, whose Three Consequences for Four Players takes the oboe, horn, cello and piano through a series of jovial, poignant and impassioned encounters.
DeAlmeida, principal oboe of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, is a poetic artist who teams beautifully with superb orchestra colleagues, a former colleague (Noah Bendix-Balgley, now first concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic) and two sensitive pianists, Marina Schmidt Lupinacci and Rodrigo Ojeda. Donald Rosenberg gramophone.co.uk
GRAMOPHONE MARCH 2016 VII