Classical The best music site on the web there is where you can read about and listen to blues, jazz, classical music and much more. This is your ultimate music resource. Tons of albums can be found within. Wed, 01 Feb 2023 07:12:17 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Johann Gotlieb Graun - Konzertante Musik Mit Viola Da Gamba (1998) Johann Gotlieb Graun - Konzertante Musik Mit Viola Da Gamba (1998)

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1	Concerto for violin & viola da gamba (or viola da braccio) in C minor: Allegro con spirito	
2	Concerto for violin & viola da gamba (or viola da braccio) in C minor: Adagio con sordini
3	Concerto for violin & viola da gamba (or viola da braccio) in C minor: Allegro			
4	Trio for 2 violas da gambe & continuo in G major: Adagio (andante)			
5	Trio for 2 violas da gambe & continuo in G major: Allegro			
6	Trio for 2 violas da gambe & continuo in G major: Allegro (Minuetto)	
7	Concerto for viola da gamba in A minor: Allegro moderato			
8	Concerto for viola da gamba in A minor: Adagio			
9	Concerto for viola da gamba in A minor: Allegro		
10	Trio Sonata for violin, viola da gamba, pardessus de viol & bass cembalo in A major: Adagio
11	Trio Sonata for violin, viola da gamba, pardessus de viol & bass cembalo in A major: Allegro
12	Trio Sonata for violin, viola da gamba, pardessus de viol & bass cembalo in A major: Allegro

Christophe Coin (Viola da gamba)
Gilles Colliard (Violin)
Bruno Cocset (Cello)
Vittorio Ghielmi (Viola da gamba)
Jan-Willem Jansen (Harpsichord)
Limoges Baroque Ensemble
Christophe Coin – conductor


Johann Gottlieb Graun (1702/3 - 1771) began his musical studies at the famous Kreuzschule in Dresden. Subsequently he acquired his legendary prowess on the violin from two of the most excellent teachers of the time: the Vivaldi disciple, Johann Georg Pisendel in Dresden and Giuseppe Tartini in Padova. Very early in his career, during his service as concertmaster in Merseburg, Graun got acquainted with Johann Christian Hertel (1697-1754), an outstanding viola da gamba virtuoso; they remained friends throughout their lives, corresponding frequently. This may be the reason for Graun's apparent knowledge of the technical possibilities of the viol: his compositions for this instrument - not less than 22 large-scale works are extant - bear witness to this.

Frederick II summoned Johann Gottlieb Graun as concertmaster - and with a handsome salary - in 1732 to his orchestra in Ruppin, later in Potsdam: indeed, Graun was the first musician to be appointed by His Majesty, which shows the high esteem this virtuoso enjoyed even at this early date. In 1766 Johann Adam Hiller wrote the following:

The concertmaster's great strength on the violin and his excellence in composition are universally known. In both these fields he had much to thank the tutelage of the famous Mr. Johann Georg Pisendel, the former concertmaster of the Prince Elector of Saxony in Dresden. He had also seen Italy and had got acquainted with the playing style of the famous Tartini directly from the master, although he considered it inappropriate to incorporate (into his own playing) the personal aspects of Tartini's art. The compositions of Mr. Graun consist of unusually fiery concertos for one and two violins, of double concertos for other instruments; of concertos for violoncello, viola da gamba, etc., of very many magnificent symphonies , some with many concertante instruments, and of several overtures, of beautiful trios an quartets for divers instruments, of many solos and also a few cantatas, etc.

Graun composed at least 8 concertos for the viola da gamba, which would most certainly have never been written, had it not been for the presence of a highly gifted musical personality at the court, namely, the excellent violist da gamba, Ludwig Christian Hesse (1716-1772). Hiller (1766) apparently knew him, too:

As musicians in the service of his Highness, the Prince of Prussia are:

Mr. Christian Ludwig Hesse, Viola da gambist, from Darmstadt: the son of the formerly so famous violist da gamba and subsequently Chancellor of War, Mr. Hesse from Darmstadt, and his wife, formerly a famous singer of the German Theatre. The technical accomplishment, the exactness and the fire in performance which Mr. Hesse possesses to such a high degree make him in our times indisputably the greatest violist da gamba in Europe.

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]]> (bluesever) Graun Johann Gotlieb Wed, 06 Aug 2014 11:47:40 +0000
Johann Gottlieb Graun – Concertos for Strings (2009) Johann Gottlieb Graun – Concertos for Strings (2009)

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Johann Gottlieb Graun, Concerto c minor
01. Allegro
02. Largo
03. Allegro

Johann Gottlieb Graun, Concerto G major
01. Allegro
02. Adagio
03. Allegro molto e con spirito

probably Markus Heinrich Grauel, Concerto A major
01. Allegretto
02. Adagio
03. Allegro

Johann Gottlieb Graun, Concerto F major
01. Allegro
02. Mesto
03. Allegro

Johann Gottlieb Graun, Concerto E flat major
01. Allegretto
02. Adagio, un poco Andante
03. Allegro

Ilia Korol - violin, viola solo, artistic director
Piroska Batori - violin solo
moderntimes_1800 (ensemble)


Johann Gottlieb Graun was born in 1701 or 1702 in Wahrenbrück. He studied for several months between 1721 and 1723 with Giuseppe Tartini (1692-1770) in Padua. Tartini had a lasting impression on the young Graun; this can also be heard in his compositions. In 1740 Graun was nominated as concertmaster and conductor at the court-orchestra of Frederick II of Prussia. Graun’s duties included having to scout for new talent for the orchestra, and the direction of the court concerts in Berlin. After the Seven Years’ War, Graun retired from active duty for reasons of health. He died, highly esteemed, on 7 October 1771 in Berlin. Instrumental works utterly dominate the extensive oeuvre of Johann Gottlieb Graun as a composer. It is hardly surprising that among them – besides overtures, symphonies, quartets, trios and wind concertos – he wrote a great number of concertos and solo Sonatas for the violin. He composed at least 83 solo concertos, double concertos and several ensemble concertos with solo violin. (A sinfonia for 8 winds & b.c., also performed by moderntimes_1800, is to be found on CC72193) The concerto by Markus Heinrich Grauel on this CD may be taken as an example of Graun’s influence.


The concertos on these two discs show that he gradually moved away from counterpoint. The Concerto in c minor is the earliest piece in this set and was written in 1730 or even earlier. Particularly beautiful is the largo in which the violin moves over a tutti which is dominated by a motif of three notes. Although the scoring includes two oboes they have no independent parts but play colla parte with the violins.

That is also the case in the Concerto for two violins in G. The scoring includes two parts for horns, and these are independent and play a noticeable role in the fast movements, but are silent in the adagio. This movement is dominated by Seufzer and descending figures, both in the solo parts and in the tutti.

Graun's acquaintance with Giuseppe Tartini has had a strong influence on his compositional style. The Italian master didn't avoid virtuosity, but gave priority to expression. That is also the main feature of Graun's concertos, and it is no coincidence that in two concertos the slow movements are the longest. In the Concerto in F the second movement, mesto, is almost twice as long as the fast movements. That is different in the Concerto for viola in E flat. It is one of only two concertos for this instrument which are known from Graun. It is a particularly beautiful work, with a magnificent cantabile solo part in the middle movement, with the character indication 'adagio, un poco andante'.

The only piece which is not by Graun is the Concerto in A, which is attributed to Markus Heinrich Grauel. He is an almost completely unknown quantity, and has no entry in New Grove. The concerto is to be found in the archive of the Berlin Singakademie, and it says 'del Sigr. Grauel'. The man to which it is attributed was cellist in the court orchestra in Berlin from 1763. Considering his style he is thought to have been a pupil of Graun. It is less virtuosic but quite beautiful. The first movement is dominated by drum basses, a feature of many compositions from the mid-18th century.

Ilia Korol and Piroska Batori give excellent performances of the solo parts. The dialogue between the two violins is very well worked out and there is a good balance between the two violins. The viola concerto is definitely one of the highlights of this set, and the viola is brilliantly played by Ilia Korol. The horn parts are impressively executed by Oliver Kersken and Stefan Oetter, and also well recorded as they are clearly audible.

In short, this is a very fine production which sheds light on the oeuvre of a composer whose violin concertos need to be further explored. --- Johan van Veen, MusicWeb International

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]]> (bluesever) Graun Johann Gotlieb Sun, 07 Feb 2016 17:10:36 +0000