... as appearing in the November 2005 issue
New CD recordings. This crop of recordings is exceptional not only for the excellence of the performers but also as a reminder of the multitude of approaches, interpretations, styles, and tone colors possible. Each of these outstanding flutists is a distinct individual with something unique and personal to offer.
--A Journey, by flutist Jane Hoffman, accompanied by harpist, Kim Davidson-Derosa, guitarist Thomas Koch, and pianist Mike Markaverich. Available from her website (www.janehoffman.org). Price: $15 plus applicable tax, shipping and handling.
Jane Hoffman is a fine flutist now concertizing and teaching in Sarasota, Florida, where she is director of the Hecht School of Music. I’ve known Jane’s work since the time she was teaching in California at Humboldt State University prior to completing her D.M.A. degree with Sam Baron at SUNY-Stonybrook. It is gratifying to hear how she has continued to mature as an artist. This self-produced CD is difficult to characterize due the great variety of material presented; the recording simply displays Hoffman’s rich tone and her mastery of great variety of styles ranging from jazz to folk music to new age to the most contemporary concert music. She shines in intense and angular solo works, like Katherine Hoover’s Kokopelli, as well in poignant lyrical melodies deftly accompanied by harp or piano; and her tone is passionately singing in a set of Latin and American folk melodies arranged for flute and guitar. Most impressive to me, however, is her inventive and cool alto flute playing on jazz standards and classics, such as The Shadow of Your Smile and Swingin’ Shepherd Blues. This album shows a working professional who can cover all the bases and appeal to a wide audience. She is definitely “a crowd pleaser.” - J.E.P.
--Superflute, a CD recording by Leonard Garrison, flutist and William Roger Price, pianist. On Capstone Records CPS-8751. Available from Capstone Records, 252 DeKalb Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11205. Telephone: 718-852-2919. Price: $14.00 plus shipping and tax. You can hear audio samples at their website: www.capstonerecords.org. (Also, be sure to peruse Capstone’s very extensive catalog of other fine recordings of contemporary music by regional and nationally-known ensembles and soloists.)
Leonard Garrison, who currently teaches flute at the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma as well as playing flute and piccolo with the Tulsa Philharmonic Orchestra and Opera, is well-known to the flute community from his service to the N.F.A and his convention performances, and he is a flutist worthy of much wider recognition and acclaim. This outstanding recording shows that he truly deserves to wear the mantle of the “caped crusader”. On this recording he impressively demonstrates his prowess and mastery of the techniques and difficulties of contemporary music for flute, piccolo, and alto flute in works with piano accompaniment (Klaus Wustoff’s Drei Mobiles, Alec Wilder’s Sonata No. 1, and Roger Price’s Credo), and flute and electronic sounds (the title track, Meyer Kuperman’s Superflute and Howard Sandroff’s Chant de femmes), and works for flute/piccolo alone (Gordon Jacob’s The Pied Piper, and Michael Colquhoun’s delightful Latin-tinged Charanga.) Several of these works are not widely known or currently available on other recordings, and it nice to hear fresh modern music that is inventive and intriguing. Garrison’s playing is sensitive and expressive while traversing the tightwire and performing the flying feats of agility required by the avant-garde style. He is just “superior” both in brilliant technique and musicianship. (Also, you will find interesting his extensive website with valuable information on piccolo technique, practicing, and flute literature. See: http://www.personal.utulsa.edu/~leonard-garrison/lg.html ) J.E.P.
--18th Century Flute Sonatas performed by Tadeu Coelho, flutist and Eric Larsen, pianist. Released on Tempo- Primo Records. Available from Carolyn Nussbaum Music. Order by phone at 1-877-FLUTE4U or from her website: (http://www.flute4u.com/CDs.html ) or hear audio samples and purchase on-line from www.CDBaby.com. More information about Coelho is available at his website: www.tadeucoelho.com.
Through his extensive touring, recording, and very successful teaching of master classes and at major universities and music schools, Brazilian-born and Juilliard-trained Coehlo has recently emerged as a virtuoso artist and a highly influential flute teacher.
This CD presents seven well-chosen and marvelously performed sonatas for flute and clavier that were written between 1726 and 1764. Included are Mozart’s very early Sonata in C, K. 14; Georg Philipp Telemann’s Sonata in F minor from“Der Getreue Musik- Meister”; G. F. Handel’s Sonata in F major, Op. 1, No. 11; Johann Gottfried Muthel’s Sonata in D Major; Jean-Marie Leclaire’s Sonata in G major, opus IX, No. 7; Antonio Vivaldi’s Sonata in G minor, opus XIII, No. 6 from “Il Pastor Fido”; and C.P.E. Bach’s Sonata in G Major, the “Hamburger” Sonata, Wq. 133.
Coelho presents the listener with a wide and representative range of compositional styles from the mature Baroque period through the pre-classic empfindsamer and gallant styles. His playing is charming with a lightness and clarity of articulation combined with a sweetness of tone. His seamless legato and singing vibrato provide an excellent contrast to his fleet fingered and clearly articulated rapid passage work. The solid and rhythmic accompaniment of the piano is likewise musical and clean. While these performances are lightly, but deftly and convincingly, ornamented, this is not a recording for early music purists; however, Coelho’s flute playing is solidly in the current-day tradition of interpretation of 18th century music on modern instruments.) Coelho plays with clear and musical phrasing, intensity, rich colors, and tonal variety. One could not ask for more engaging, artistic, or impressive performances. – J.E.P.
-Gypsy Wheel by Thomas Robertello, flutist and Winston Choi, piano. On Crystal Records CD712. Order from http://www.crystalrecords.com/flute.html. Price: $16.95 plus $2.00 shipping and any applicable state tax.
Robertello, who has held positions with the Pittsburgh, Cleveland and National Symphony orchestras, is currently on the faculty of Indiana University’s School of Music, but he still finds time to concertize extensively, and he recently has been appearing on throughout the country doing well-received recitals and masterclasses; he is a brilliant flutist and a very effective teacher. Pianist Choi is equally impressive in matching Rotello throughout the fiendishly modern difficult works. This new CD release presents a very nice package of both old and new masterpieces: Francois Borne’s, Fantaisie Brillante on themes of Bizet's Carmen; Paul Taffanel’s, Fantaisie (on themes from "Der Freischutz" by C. M. von Weber); David Dzubay’s, Footprints; Matthew Van Brink’s, Dal Dosai, Sonata for Flute and Piano; Charles T. Griffes’, Poem; and Mischa Zupko’s, The Seven Deadly Sins. Although Robertello plays the standards with ease and passion, the newer works are what aroused my curiosity and what impressed me most. Robertello is a champion of young composers and three of the works on this recording were written for or commissioned by him. The Indiana University composition studio is well represented by faculty composer and New Music Ensemble Director Dzubay along and very talented former student composers Van Brink and Zupko (whose Seven Deadly Sins is one the most impressive new works I have heard this year--I suspect Zupko’s name will become much more widely known due to his many prizes, commissions and premieres.) Thomas Robertello plays all these works with incredible intensity and expression. Technique is not even an issue: Robertello plays flawlessly, and he is at one with the instrument, communicating directly to the listener. (The title of the CD, Gypsy Wheel, comes from the Ed Paschke painting reproduced on the cover—Robertello is also a painter and serious art collector himself.) -- J.E.P.