Harmoniemusik from Mozart's Favourite Operas (2015)


Winds Unlimited with Chen Halevi

In the eighteenth century it was common practice to hear excerpts from the public’s favourite operas and ballets, their most loved arias performed in transcriptions usually for wind sextet, or some- times a wind octet, both occassionally with an additional bass instrument. This Harmoniemusik was all the rage in the last quarter of the eighteenth century, most intensely from 1780s - 1820s, particularly in Vienna but also in Prague and Budapest. This CD features Harmoniemusik of some of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s most loved arias from his operas ‘La Clemenza di Tito’, ‘Don Giovanni’ and ‘Le nozze di Figaro’. The transcriptions were made by Georg Kaspar Sartorius (1754-1809). Needless to say, these particular transcriptions have their own texture and flavour that is apart from the original. What they offer still, are a representa- tion of the bright, varied, virtuosic, melodious and grand music found in these operas reflected through the seductive timbres of clarinets, horns and bassoons, grounded and infused by the warmth of a contra-bass. And still imbued with all the essential brilliance of the original Mozart works. The natural vocal qualities of wind instruments in this grouping lend themselves perfectly to the emotionally charged and human voice Mozart was portraying.


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Winds Unlimited with Chen Halevi

Winds Unlimited is a unique new wind ensemble brought together by clarinetist, Chen Halevi. The group comprises of seven outstanding musicians from around the world. Chen Halevi’s inspiration to form the group came from his love of playing on period instruments: ‘When you play on period instruments it gives you a whole new perspective and sound world. It opens up new horizons for interpretation and it gives us enormous joy to play these instruments.

Winds Unlimited was formed in 2009, a coming together of six wind players from across Europe with a passion for playing on period instruments. In this short time they have worked intensively together discovering new repertoire bringing their knowledge from many different backgrounds together in a constant artistic dialogue. Together they bring an intensely unique approach to a shared love for the classical repertoire of the wind sextet with warmth, subtlety and virtuosic dexterity. Using historical instruments, their vast array of influences set the groundwork for a play of aesthetics that have as their main goal an ability to convey with beauty, simplicity, elegance and brilliance the music of the 18th century through the works of mozart and his contemporaries. They have a commitment not only to play masterpieces written for this type of ensemble by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven but to also explore lesser-known jewels of the classical and romantic period such as; Johann Christian Bach, Hoffmeister, Krommer, Castil-Blaze and Lessel.


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Harmoniemusik from Mozart's Favourite Operas (2015)


Winds Unlimited with Chen Halevi

    Luister, may 2016

'The instrumentalists of Winds Unlimited are masters on their instruments and the double bass creates a warm depth. Truly beautiful.'

Machiel Swillens

    Opusklassiek may 2016

As mentioned, musicians who adhere to the "Harmoniemusik 'ventured came at that time from a good family. That is no less true today. The copies of original instruments 'Winds Unlimited 'offers us a flawless ensemble sound with the associated sonority. In addition to the fullest can be enjoyed from the musical 'joie de vivre' that radiates this ensemble. The recording made by Tom Peeters may be best known as a masterpiece. This has become an issue that truly masterful everything will fall into place. Who wants to explore first: on YouTube to find some videos of the ensemble.

Aart van der Wal[read full review]

    Fono Forum (6/16)

Durch den Verzicht auf das sonst übliche Oboenpaar bekommt das Bläsersextett von Georg Kasper Sartorius mit je zwei Klarinetten, Hörnern und Fagotten mit Kontraass eine höchst aparte, dunkel-samtig timbrierte Note. Dies kommt hier besonders in den langsamen Sätzen wunderbar zur Geltung. In den schnellen Partien produzieren die auf Nachbauten historischer Instrumenten blasenden Winds Unlimited nicht nur kultiverten Schönklang.

Holger Arnold

    HVT (march 2016)

Het is buitengewoon precair om nu al een CD tot ‘opname van het jaar’ te bombarderen. Okay, als er nog zulke fraaie opnames bij kunnen komen de komende maanden dan staat deze op mijn lijstje van kanshebbers. Wat een heerlijke muziek, wat een heerlijke uitvoering – Winds Unlimited, een zevental dat werkelijk prachtige instrumenten tot hun beschikking hebben – en heerlijk muziek. == It is extremely precarious already bombarding a CD for Record of the Year . Okay , if there login such beautiful recordings next few months, this is on my wish list. What a wonderful music , a delicious version - Unlimited Winds , seven that truly wonderful instruments at their disposal - and lovely music.

Theo Wubbolts

    Music Frames (febr 2016)

How wonderful accompaniment and melody are woven into each other, beautifully performed with care and attention. The Winds Unlimited shines with the enthusiasm of an orchestra and the intimacy of quartet. From each opera they play six arrangements with world premières of ‘La Clemenza di Tito’ and ‘Il Don Giovanni’. This makes the album ‘Concert Music from Mozart’s Favourite Operas’ even more unique!

Mattie Poels[read full review]

    Klassik.com (april 2016) -

Konnte man also die oben erwähnte ‚Figaro‘-Ouvertüre offenbar schon anderswo in dieser Fassung hören, so bereiten auch die ‚Favorit-Gesänge‘ dieser beiden anderen Opern so viel Vergnügen, dass es ein Verlust wäre, sie nicht zu kennen. Man höre nur das gerade eine Minute lange, mitreißend lebhafte 'Eh via buffone' aus 'Don Giovann'i oder dessen wunderschön gespielte Schlussnummer (in dieser Fassung) 'Vedrai carino'.

Jan Kampmeier[read full review]

Harmoniemusik from Mozart's Favourite Operas (2015)


Winds Unlimited with Chen Halevi


For this album we chose to record in Binaural as well. This is a perfect solution for headphone users. The recordings are made with the dummy head of Neuman, the KU-100. On a headphone this gives a surprisingly realistic image and it gives you the feeling of being at the session. This idea to develop an extra Binaural catalogue in DSD is initiated and supported by Rivasono in The Netherlands.

Digital Converters: dCS
Microphones: B&K 4003
Mixing Board: Rens Heijnis
Producer: Tom Peeters
Recording Engineer: Tom Peeters
Recording location: Doopsgezinde Kerk, Deventer, The Netherlands
Recording Software: Merging, Pyramix
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DSD64

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Album Download duration price
COBRA0049: Harmoniemusik from Mozart's Favourite Operas
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Sinfonia
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Cinque, diece, venti
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Se a caso madama
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Se vuol ballare signor Contino
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Non piu andrai
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Le Nozze di Figaro - Susanna or via sortite
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La Clemenza di Tito - Come ti piace imponi
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La Clemenza di Tito - Del piu sublime soglio
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La Clemenza di Tito - Deh se piacer mi vuoi
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La Clemenza di Tito - Totna di Tito a lato
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La Clemenza di Tito - Ah grazie si rendano
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La Clemenza di Tito - Tu fosti tradito
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Don Giovanni - Ah chi mi dice mai
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Don Giovanni - Giovinette che fate all'amore
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Don Giovanni - Ho capito, signor, si
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Don Giovanni - La ci darem la mano
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Don Giovanni - Eh via buffone
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Don Giovanni - Vedrai carino
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