Florilegium, Walter van Hauwe – G. PH. Telemann Tafelmusik (2007/2017) [FLAC 24bit/192kHz]

Florilegium, Walter van Hauwe – G. PH. Telemann Tafelmusik (2007/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24bit/192kHz | Time – 01:14:16 minutes | 2,46 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Channel Classics Records

While most selections from Georg Philipp Telemann’s famous Tafelmusik could appropriately serve as inspirational musical backdrops to a formal banquet, there are other livelier, more vivacious ones that would auspiciously divert attention from such a setting in all the best of ways. Can you imagine for example not putting down your fork and deferring to the spirited second-movement R’ejouissance of the Overture-Suite in E minor, or to the final Allegro of the concerto in A major, or to the third-movement Allegresse or sixth-movement Badinage, both of which are featured in the Overture-Suite in B-flat major? As it turns out, the ever-practical Telemann understood this and titled his grand three-part production more as a means to lure would-be subscribers, irrespective of when and where the music was performed. After all, “Tafelmusik” is a far more appealing title than “a miscellany of concertos, suites, and sonatas”.

It is in this spirit that the British ensemble Florilegium approaches these Tafelmisik selections, delivering stylish, highly animated, inspired performances that rarely recede into the background. Though not necessarily the quickest (Reinhard Goebel and the Musica Antiqua K”oln claim that distinction), Florilegium’s tempos overall tend to be more sprightly and brisk than most recent performances (such as H”unteler on MDG and the Orchestra of the Golden Age on Naxos). Florilegium also has a marvelous ability to shape phrases and broaden lines in a way that effectively alludes to the French “galant” style that so highly influenced Telemann at this time. Especially in the two quartets (one in G from the first production and one in D minor from the second-which incidentally features veteran recorder virtuoso Walter van Hauwe) the spirit of the dance rarely has been imbued with such vigor, flourish, and wit as heard here.

Channel’s sound is very good, with a nicely detailed balance among the instruments. There is certainly no shortage of engaging complete Tafelmusik cycles on CD (add Harnoncourt and Br”uggen, both on Teldec, to the ones mentioned above), though for listeners not quite ready to indulge in the whole of Telemann’s extraordinary achievement, this generous Florilegium offering rewards famously.

01. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Ouverture: Lentement-Vite-Lentement
02. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: R’ejouissance
03. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Rondeau
04. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Loure
05. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Passepied
06. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Air. Un Peu Vivement
07. Ouverture-Suite In E Minor: Gigue
08. Quatuor In G Major: Largo-Allegro-Largo
09. Quatuor In G Major: Vivace-Moderato-Vivace D.C.
10. Quatuor In G Major: Grave
11. Quatuor In G Major: Vivace
12. Trio In E Flat Major: Affetuoso
13. Trio In E Flat Major: Vivace
14. Trio In E Flat Major: Grave
15. Trio In E Flat Major: Allegro
16. Conclusion In E Minor: Allegro-Largo-Allegro D.C.
17. Quatuor In D Minor: Andante
18. Quatuor In D Minor: Vivace
19. Quatuor In D Minor: Largo
20. Quatuor In D Minor: Allegro