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  • Vogler: Symphonies; Overtures; Ballets
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Vogler: Symphonies; Overtures; Ballets

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Audio CD, April 28, 2009
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Vogler: Symphonies; Overtures; Ballets + Hoffmeister: Symphonies + Marsh: 5 Symphonies
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Product Details

  • Orchestra: London Mozart Players
  • Conductor: Matthias Bamert
  • Composer: Georg Joseph Vogler
  • Audio CD (April 28, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Chandos
  • ASIN: B001U4XZTI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,818 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


Georg Vogler was one of the 18th (and early 19th) century's great "characters". He began his career at Mannheim where, if Mozart is to be believed, no one especially liked him, although he evidently was successful enough. He then traveled all over the world, literally, from Paris to Sweden to North Africa, teaching music as he went. His two most famous pupils were Weber and Meyerbeer, both of whom loved him. And no wonder.

This music is full of personality. The D minor symphony, written in Paris around 1782, is a Sturm und Drang masterpiece, exciting as hell and fabulously scored, especially for the winds. So is the Ballet Suite No. 1--note the piccolos in the final dance--featuring music taken from La rendez-vous de chasse. It makes you desperately want to hear the complete work, which is readily available for perusal in score as part of Volume 1 of A-R Editions' wonderful series of Mannheim court ballets.

Here's the bottom line: if you're interested in some really worthy, totally unknown music of the Classical period, then you need to hear this. Matthias Bamert and the London Mozart Players turn in performances that are as lively and colorful as the music. There's plenty of rhythmic fire and spontaneity in the quicker music, and the (modern) strings never turn dessicated, which is a good thing because Vogler specifically asks for vibrato in his orchestral scores--and even in his piano music--so we know that it's both expressively necessary as well as stylistically appropriate. Only the engineering sounds a bit boomy at times, but it's no big deal. --, David Hurwitz, October 2009

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Owl on October 22, 2009
Format: Audio CD
One is immediately impressed by the clarity and concision of this music, its freshness and vitality. In fact it comes across as something of a revelation, especially when considered in relation to Vogler's main historical claim to fame--as the teacher of Weber and Meyerbeer, who as young men lived together under his roof in Darmstadt and learned so much of their skills from him. Vogler's powerful influence on both manifests itself in even the few short pieces presented so effectively and lovingly in this excellent recording. The busy rushing strings of Vogler's little Symphony in G point so tellingly to Weber's characteristic use of the violins in both the overtures to 'Der Freischütz' and 'Oberon', while the overture to Vogler's 'Athalie' is clearly the direct inspiration for Weber's 'Beherrscher der Geister'. The punctuating dotted chords and striking deployment of high and low woodwind in unison, with prominent use of the bassoon carrying the melody in the Ballet Suite No. 1, provide other characteristics that would become features of Meyerbeer's musical vocabulary. So in terms of both sheer musical enjoyment, full of unusual and striking ideas, and as an important piece of historical documentation, this marvellous recording is to be applauded. It is a most appropriate celebration of 30 years of outstanding musical contribution by the London Mozart Players, and a tribute to the inspirational Matthias Bamert.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By John on January 13, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The transition from the Baroque to the Classical is one of the most important and fascinating events in the history of music. Joseph Haydn and Amadeus Mozart dominated the scene to the extent that their contemporaries' music is almost never played at concert level, and only recently recorded at length by Chandos. There are some thirty composers who have been rediscovered, and whose works are brilliantly played by the London Mozart Players conducted by Matthias Bamert.
Vogler studied to become a Chaplain and gained employment at the Mannheim, wher he knew the 21 year old Mozart. Mozart had a low opinion of him, calling him dreary,and terrible for belittling J.C.Bach. He also scrambled through Mozart's Piano Concerto C. K246 on sight reading,leaving the young genius most unimpressed.
Despite this, Vogler persisted and his students included Weber and Meyerbeer, for which he took no payment. He wrote operas, church music, symphonies, concertos and sonatas. The Symphony in D minor is largely serious, and in the first movement one can detect phrases in bare octaves that appear later in both Mozart's and Beethoven's C minor piano concertos. So Mozart was prepared to be inluenced by the man he criticized!
The Symphony in G is much lighter in mood and has an Andante beautifully played by the strings alone.
Voglers Ballet Suites are quite cheeky , with lively rhythms giving way to some exquisite brass and woodwind parts, the piece ending with lone strings in the trio section of the Menuetto grazioso.
Orchestral balance and sound are both excellent. This is a superb CD.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Everything Hurwitz wrote is true. Very glad I bought this CD. Have been listening to it over and over again. The opening symphony is especially enjoyable; fabulously dramatic intensity and some gorgeous melodies. The first Ballet Suite and the Hamlet Overture are also highlights, although everything is worthwhile. One is left wondering why Vogler is not better-known. He is now one of my favorite composers.

I have six other CDs in this Contemporaries of Mozart series (Krommer, Stamitz, Kozeluch, Pleyel, Wranitzky, Marsh) and this is the best one so far. This music has a great deal of personality and exuberance to it. I think it helps that a mixture of symphonies, ballet suites and overtures is presented here to create a more diverse harmonic landscape.
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