Encores - Fröst & Friends
Malena Ernman (mezzo-soprano)
Hermann Stefánsson, Sölve Kingstedt & Martin Fröst (clarinets)
Christian Svarfvar & Åsa Thedéen (violins)
Göran Fröst (viola)
Torleif Thedéen, Svante Henryson (cellos)
Svante Henryson (double bass)
Roland Pöntinen (piano)
A calendar filled with orchestral concerts and chamber recitals in many of the world's most prestigious venues has given the clarinettist Martin Fröst ample opportunity to develop a wide range of encores, for every occasion.
Known for the imaginatively themed concert programmes he devises with various musician friends, he has also explored a number of musical genres. These aspects of his artistry are both demonstrated on this constantly engaging disc, which includes immortal gems such as Rachmaninov's Vocalise and Kreisler's Liebeslied as well as pieces rather less usual in a classical context: Charlie Chaplin's Smile and the klezmer traditional Let's Be Happy rubbing shoulders with an improvisation over the Nat King Cole standard Nature Boy.
Throughout the programme Fröst receives the expert support of the pianist Roland Pöntinen, a chamber music partner of long standing who has also been involved in devising many of the imaginative arrangements, for instance of Vittorio Monti's Csárdás. Three other musical companions of Fröst's make cameo appearances, with mezzo-soprano Malena Ernman joining the clarinet in the head-long flight of not one, but two bumble-bees.
Torleif Thedéen's cello sings a heartfelt Ave Maria above the gyrating accompaniment of Fröst's clarinet, while Svante Henryson, also a cellist, plays in his own duo piece Off Pist, in which the clarinet and cello chase each other up and down alpine slopes. Martin Fröst's spectacular career on disc began in 1995, with one of his first CD reviews, in In Tune Magazine, describing him as 'A Swedish Clarinet Star', and continuing 'Fröst has everything - including genius'.
More than 10 discs later his recording of Bernard Crusell's three clarinet concertos caused the reviewer in French Classica-Répertoire to remark that 'in every movement his playing hits upon the appropriate elegance, the perfect phrasing, the true colour, the required virtuosity, the necessary playfulness ... as he pursues his musical intentions all the way' - a description that could equally well be applied to the present disc!
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- Eden Ahbez: Nature Boy
- Johann Sebastian Bach: Violin Sonata in G minor, BWV 1001
- Johannes Brahms: 5 Lieder, Op. 105
- Charles Chaplin: Smile
- Frederic Chopin: Nocturne No. 2 in E flat major, Op. 9 No. 2
- Göran Fröst: Brudvals för Karin och Martin
- Martin Fröst: Improvisation (based on a theme by Malcolm Arnold)
- Charles-Francois Gounod: Méditation sur le 1er Prélude de S. Bach, CG 89a
- Svante Henryson: Off Pist
- Anders Hillborg: The Peacock Moment (Påfågelsögonblick)
- Fritz Kreisler: Liebesleid (Love's Sorrow)
- André Messager: Solo de Concours
- Vittorio Monti: Csardas
- Sergei Rachmaninov: Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14
- Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: The Tale of Tsar Sultan (1899-1900)
- Robert Schumann: 5 heitere Gesänge, Op. 125
- Alexander Scriabin: 5 Preludes, Op. 16