Album: Arcanto Quartett, Jörg Widmann, Mozart: Clarinet Quintet (Harmonia Mundi)
Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet was a literally unique combination at the time he wrote it, requiring a judicious balance of parts: usually when an extra instrument was added to the quartet format it would involve two violas, but here the use of two violins leads to refinement in the higher register, rather than more clutter.
The gentle regard which clarinet and strings have for each other is what elevates the Clarinet Quintet – and this performance in particular – to such a sublimely civilised level. The dry, almost flute-like tone achieved by Jörg Widmann brings perfect poise to the delicate trills and languid undulations of the Allegro, before the exquisite interplay of clarinet and violin in the Larghetto.
Download: Clarinet Quintet in A major
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