Strauss: Metamorphosen & Wind Sonatina No. 1 Mozarteumorchester Salzburg & Riccardo Minasi

Album info



Label: Berlin Classics

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Orchestral

Artist: Mozarteumorchester Salzburg & Riccardo Minasi

Composer: Richard Strauss (1864-1949)

Album including Album cover


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  • Richard Strauss (1864 - 1949): Metamorphosen:
  • 1Strauss: Metamorphosen27:04
  • Wind Sonatina No. 1:
  • 2Strauss: Wind Sonatina No. 1: I. Allegro Moderato12:17
  • 3Strauss: Wind Sonatina No. 1: II. Romanze und Menuett10:05
  • 4Strauss: Wind Sonatina No. 1: III. Finale, Molto Allegro14:33
  • Total Runtime01:03:59

Info for Strauss: Metamorphosen & Wind Sonatina No. 1

"Strauss: Metamorphoses & Wind Sonatina No. 1" is the second album in a series of six that the Mozarteumorchester Salzburg will release on the Berlin Classics label until 2025. For this album, the orchestra has chosen the internationally renowned conductor Riccardo Minasi. Originally, a concert under his baton was to take place at Salzburg's "Großes Festspielhaus" in the 2020/21 season, but like so many events, it had to be canceled. Instead, the decision was made to record with repertoire whose instrumentation sizes were appropriate to the conditions: Richard Strauss "Metamorphosen" for 23 solo strings and the first Sonatina for 16 wind instruments. The repertoire thus selected highlights the individual sections of the orchestra, strings and winds, and illustrates the orchestra's flexibility in seemingly effortlessly realigning itself for the repertoire at hand. It further demonstrates that the orchestra's constant preoccupation with its core repertoire informs its approach to the music of later eras - impressively heard on the current album of High Romantic music by the late Richard Stauss.

However, the decision for the first wind sonatina is also a link to the first album "Mozart: Serenades". "Gran Partita", Mozart's serenade for winds, served Strauss as a model for the wind sonatina. The designation sonatina is just as much a trivialization as the assignment of Mozart's work to the genre of the serenade. Measured by the musical content, it is rather a full-blown wind symphony. Strauss composed it after recovering from a severe case of the flu and commented on it with the subtitle "From the workshop of an invalid." In general, Strauss likes to refer to his late instrumental works as "workshop works, so that the right wrist, freed from the baton, does not fall asleep prematurely." And so the circle of understatements closes.

However, the new album does not begin with the first wind sonatina, but with the equally beautiful and sad “Metamorphosen”. The destruction at the end of World War 2 led Strauss into a despairing mood "My beautiful Dresden-Weimar-Munich, all gone!" In this troubled emotional state, Strauss begins to write a septet for strings, which he expands into a large work for 23 solo strings after receiving an official commission from the Swiss conductor Paul Sacher. In the last bars, a musical quotation from Beethoven's "Eroica" is heard - the funeral march theme, with which Strauss once again emphasizes his personal consternation. All these feelings are made perceptible by the extremely differentiated interpretation of conductor and orchestra.

The Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, founded with the participation of Constanze Mozart in 1841, today enjoys the highest reputation worldwide for its lively and stylistically conscious Mozart interpretations. This album shows that the orchestra can easily operate beyond this core repertoire and is quite justifiably now also appreciated for interpretations of 19th/20th and 21st century music. A successful look over the repertoire horizon!

Mozarteumorchester Salzburg
Riccardo Minasi, conductor

Riccardo Minasi
Chief Conductor of Mozarteumorchester Salzburg, “Artist in Residence” of the Ensemble Resonanz at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg and regular guest of the Orchestra La Scintilla at the Opernhaus Zürich, Riccardo Minasi has recently received invitations as guest conductor from orchestras such as Staatskapelle Dresden, Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Teatro Carlo Felice di Genova, Orchestra of the Age of Enlinghtenment, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Orchestre National de Belgique.

In the recent years he conducted Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra, Hessischer Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, Academy of Ancient Music, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Zürcher Philarmonia, Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, London Chamber Orchestra, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Zürcher Kammerorchester, Basel Kammerorchester, Concerto Köln, Philharmonische Staatsorchester Hamburg, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Orquestra Sinfónica Portuguesa, Casa da Música Porto, Stavanger Symfoniorkester, Portland Baroque Orchestra, L’Arpa Festante, Attersee-Akademie Orchestra, Il Complesso Barocco, Orquesta Barroca de Sevilla, Recreation-Grosses Orchester Graz, Potsdam Kammerakademie and Helsinki Baroque Orchestra with whom he was the associate music director from 2008 to 2011.

Most recent operatic engagements include Les Pêcheurs de perles at the Salzburg Festival, Don Giovanni, Entführung, Orlando Paladino, Matrimonio Segreto, Il Pirata, Viaggio a Reims, Turco in Italia and the ballets by Christian Spuck on music by Schnittke, Schumann and Monteverdi at Zürich Opera, Iphigénie en Tauride, Alcina, Nozze di Figaro, Agrippina at the Hamburg Staatsoper, Carmen at the Opera in Lyon, Rinaldo at the Theater an der Wien, Rodelinda, Nozze di Figaro at the Dutch National Opera.

As soloist and concertmaster he performed with Le Concert des Nations of Jordi Savall, Balthasar Neumann Ensemble, Il Giardino Armonico, Al Ayre Español, Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di S.Cecilia, Orquesta Sinfónica de Madrid, Accademia Bizantina, Concerto Italiano and invited by Kent Nagano at the Knowlton Belcanto Festival (Canada). He also collaborated with Concerto Vocale, Ensemble 415 and with such artists as Joyce Di Donato, Plácido Domingo, Gianluca Cascioli, Juan Diego Flórez, Bryn Terfel, Veronika Eberle, Jean-Guhien Queyras, Ramón Vargas, Javier Camarena, Antoine Tamestit, Antje Weithaas, Mahan Esfahani, Albrecht Mayer, Reinhard Goebel, Alina Pogostkina, Nils Mönkemeyer, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Cecilia Bartoli, Viktoria Mullova, Jan Lisiecki, Edgar Moreau, Robert Levin, Rafał Blechacz, Gautier Capuçon, Iveta Apkalna, Christophe Coin and Philippe Jarrousky.

In collaboration with Maurizio Biondi he published the critical edition of Norma for Bärenreiter in 2016. Co-founder and director of the ensemble il Pomo d’oro from 2012 to 2015, he was professor at the conservatory Vincenzo Bellini of Palermo between 2004 and 2010. He has held seminars, master classes and historical performance practice lessons at the Juilliard School of Music of New York, Longy School of Music of Cambridge (USA), Sibelius Academy of Helsinki, Hochschule für Musik of Hannover, Antwerp conservatory, Chinese culture university of Taipei (Taiwan), Zürich Opernhaus, Kùks residence (Czech Republic), Scuola di Musica di Fiesole, Sydney conservatory (Australia), at the European Union Baroque Orchestra (EUBO) and as historical advisor for the Montréal Symphony Orchestra (Canada).

Among the numerous prizes received, notably are the albums “Rosenkranz Sonaten” by Biber (finalist at the Midem Classical Award Cannes as album of the year 2009),“Stella di Napoli” with Joyce Di Donato (Diapason d’Or of the year 2015, BBC Music magazine Award, Grammophone Choice, Grammy Award nominee 2015), “Agrippina” with Ann Hallenberg (International Opera Award 2016), “Partenope” with Philippe Jaroussky and Karina Gauvin (Grammophone Magazine – recording of the month), “Catone in Utica”, “Giovincello” and “Haydn concertos” (Echo-Klassik Award 2016), “The Seven Last Words of Christ” by Haydn with Ensemble Resonanz (Diapason d’Or of the year 2018) and the C.P.E.Bach cello concertos with Jean- Guhien Queyras (Diapason d’Or of the year 2019).

This album contains no booklet.

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