Piazzolla: Variations on Buenos Aires / dkn, Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble

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The Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble was initiated in 2011 by the internationally well established violinist and violist Isabelle van Keulen, following her Carte Blanche concert...

The Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble was initiated in 2011 by the internationally well established violinist and violist Isabelle van Keulen, following her Carte Blanche concert series in the Concertgebouw Haarlem, the Netherlands, with the purpose to perform Astor Piazzolla’s Tango Nuevo masterworks to the highest technical and musical standards.

Together with bandoneonist Christian Gerber, he himself one of the leading performers of his generation, and winner of several prizes such as the Deutsche Schallplattenpreis, pianist Ulrike Payer, well known for her versatility and sensibility in all musical genres and double bass player Rüdiger Ludwig, a charismatic musician and Co-Principal of the NDR Orchestra Hanover, they overwhelmed their audience on their first appearance. The present release features Piazzolla’s Variations on Buenos Aires, in collaboration with dkn, the Deutsches Kammerakademie Neuss, van Keulen's string orchestra.

REVIEWS:

For the Dutch violinist Isabelle van Keulen, this recording, released by Berlin Classics, is a matter of the heart: in 2011, together with the bandoneonist Christian Gerber, the double bassist Rüdiger Ludwig and the pianist Ulrike Payer, she founded the Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble, with which she focused on tango nuevo and, above all, music by Astor Piazzolla. The classically trained violinist had always enjoyed crossing supposed genre boundaries, thus leaving the comfort zone of a classically trained and renowned violinist, at home on the concert stages of the world. Since 2019, she has also been artistic director of the German Chamber Academy Neuss, where she combines solo playing and direction from the concertmaster's podium.

So now a little homage to Astor Piazzolla. On the CD, “Piazzolla: Variations on Buenos Aires” she brings her two ensembles together. It is easy to imagine that this is not easy to implement - especially for classical musicians - since tango is not exactly part of the repertoire of orchestral musicians in training and everyday practice. But here the musicians of the German Chamber Academy Neuss surprise, or are simply strongly influenced by their artistic director. With the combination of a typical tango ensemble and a classical string orchestra, van Keulen shows through the line-up what was also typical of Astor Piazzolla and his music: although influenced by the tango from birth, the composer felt deeply attracted by so-called Western classical music. These references can also be heard in the pieces recorded here: Tres minutos con la realidad reveals echoes of Stravinsky, and his suite Silfo y Ondina shows his admiration for Bach.

The arrangements that can be heard here were created by bandoneonist Christian Gerber, taking into account the special requirements of the larger line-up. So he sometimes distributes the music only to the extended voices, or to added opposing voices; he even precedes the very well-known Oblivion with a bandoneon introduction. With this type of editing, Gerber and thus this recording are entirely in the tradition of Piazzolla, who in turn repeatedly adapted his own works to suit possible changing needs.

The selection of Piazzolla's pieces ranges from relatively unknown ones such as the above-mentioned Bach-like suite, but also such catchy tunes as Oblivion or the touching Adiós Nonino can be found on the CD. The successful collaboration of Isabelle van Keulen's two ensembles creates a successful combination between classical music and tango - something that Piazzolla always strived for. Thanks to the brilliant playing of the typical tango ensemble, this slightly different version of the works loses nothing of the typical tango sound.

-- Klassik Heute



Product Description:


  • Release Date: March 25, 2022


  • UPC: 885470026152


  • Catalog Number: 0302615BC


  • Label: Berlin Classics


  • Number of Discs: 1


  • Period: 20th Century


  • Composer: Astor Piazzolla


  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble, Deutsche Kammerakademie Neuss am Rhein


  • Performer: Isabelle van Keulen, Christian Gerber, Ulrike Payer, Rüdiger Ludwig



Works:


  1. Tangazo

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  2. Tres minutos con la realidad

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  3. Oblivion

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  4. La Camorra

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  5. Homenaje a Córdoba

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  6. Adiós Nonino

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  7. Soledad

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  8. Fugata

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble


  9. Tangata

    Composer: Astor Pizzolla

    Ensemble: Isabelle van Keulen Ensemble