Traditionalists may rue the day, but the historical performance movement has come to Chopin, and it's clear it has a lot to offer in this release by Argentine pianist Nelson Goerner and the veteran Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century under Frans Brüggen. Goerner plays an 1849 Erard instrument, some 20 years younger than the music of the youthful Chopin that's on the program, but arguably representative of a sound ideal he would have had in his head.
This is in short a really good recording. Gerdes' handling of the opera is very good (though his tempo in the Pilgrims' Chorus theme of the Overture is almost disturbingly fast), the orchestra is well controlled and very expressive. Birgit Nilsson, one of the greatest Wagnerian sopranos of the 20th Century, sings the two principle female roles - Venus and Elisabeth; Wolfgang Windgassen, who sings the role of Tannhauser, is one of the greatest Wagnerian tenors of the century. And Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, who sings Wolfram, is virtually undisputed as THE baritone of the century.Highly recommend this recording.
Brüggen plays wonderfully. He has total command of his instrument: vibrato, dynamics, flying through the vivace passages with no misplaced note. The accompaniment is also excellent
This is a monumental collection of Frans Bruggen performing a variety of pre-baroque, baroque and rococco works for recorder(s). Frans Bruggen put the recorder on the map as a solo instrument, and no one before or since has made such a huge impact. Many recorder players have burst onto the scene since, but I dare to say no one has matched Bruggen's musicality and expressiveness. Unfortunately, this 12-CD set appears to be out-of-print and hard-to-find as used copies as well.