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Alphorn Concertos

4 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 22, 2002
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$14.78 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Usually ships within 5 to 7 days. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 22, 2002)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Naxos
  • Run Time: 62 minutes
  • ASIN: B0000690PS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,490 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
The alphorn's impressive size and extremely limited range (only 5 notes) has relegated it to the status of a novelty instrument. The liner notes describe when Jozsef Molnar, the soloist on this CD, asked the composer Jean Daetwyler to write an alphorn concerto, the composer responded with amusement whether he would prefer an ocarina concerto.

Perhaps because of its extra-musical associations, the alphorn's sound cannot help but evoke images of natural settings and forces. It is not suited to serious or profound subjects, as, for example, the flute or clarinet.

Nevertheless, the alphorn is possessed of a unique timbre, and Molnar's performance is nuanced and expressive. Leopold Mozart's "Sinfonia Pastorella" showcases the composer's mastery of classical form, given an added dimension by the use of this unusual instrument. He would undoubtedly hold a higher place in the musical canon had he not sacrificed his own career to further that of his admittedly more gifted son.

The highlight of the disc is Ferenc Farkas' "Concertino Rustico," with its animated interplay between the soloist and orchestra. Altogether this disc is a marvelous exploration of the capabilities of this unfortunately rarely-heard instrument.
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I play the Alphorn and learned in Switzerland. This is ok. You can't expect a lot from an alphorn. It entertains the tourists but I can't say I would listen to it too often. If you like the sound, get a good french horn CD.
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