Graener: Orchestral Works, Vol. 4

Album cover art for upc 761203796526
Label: CPO
Catalog: 777965-2
Format: CD

Schirmer, Ulf; Raudales, Henry; Dohn, Christiane; Sinkevich, Uladzimir; Münchner Rundfunkorchester

Paul Graener was a “latest romanticist” with a strong inclination for French impressionism – which as a composer in the Germany of the first half of the twentieth century makes him a unique case. This month cpo is presenting three of his concertos on our fourth Graener album. Once again it is shown that this music more than deserves to be rediscovered. Hardly any other companion of Paul Graener’s so intensely supported his oeuvre as did the cellist Paul Grümmer, the dedicatee of this composer’s Cello Concerto and the soloist at its premiere in 1927. The critic Adolf Diesterweg wrote in a review: “Graener’s new Cello Concerto contains naturally invented, succinctly formed music enabling the cellist, thanks to the transparent orchestral part, to sound his instrument effectively. In my view the most beautiful movement is the highly cantabile and atmospheric Adagio. The Violin Concerto has harmonically original, fascinating sound elements showing us Graener at an absolute creative summit. The time of composition of Graener’s last finished composition, his Flute Concerto, coincides with the increasing bombardment and destruction of Berlin. Here it is above all the last movement that stands out and attracts our attention – and does so not so much because of its neoclassical guise, something already to be encountered in Graener’s works of the 1930s, but rather on account of his choice of the life-affirming folk song, which displays a cheerful mood that can be harmonized neither with the difficult circumstances of Graener’s life nor with the wartime events taking place at that time.”

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