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Boismortier, Prowo, Telemann & Vivaldi

The Ensemble Meridiana
Dominique Tinguely (recorder & bassoon), Sarah Humphrys (oboe), Sabine Stoffe (violin), Tore Eketor (viola da gamba), and Christian Kjos (harpsichord)

18 October 2011, City Music Society at St Botolph's, Bishopgate

A splendid and well attended lunch time concert introduced most of us to a crack Baroque and early Music Ensemble. This versatile multi-national group (five players, four countries) met in Basel and have won important prizes. They gave a mixed programme of 18C chamber music, carefully varied to maintain interest.

St Botolph's-without-Aldersgate, an oasis of beauty right in the centre of a busy City area which is being constantly re-developed, has superb acoustics and is blessed with freedom from traffic noise. Music there sounds equally good at the front and from the very back, possibly because of its barrel-roof.

The two versatile wind players were heard playing various recorders, baroque oboe and bassoon, and they announced their items from the platform, explaining to those of us who'd never heard of the Polish composer Pierre Prowo that his trio, which ends with a smart little dance in the Polish style, was until recently thought to be by his hugely prolific contemporary, Georg Phiipp Telemann.

For Ensemble Meridiana's debut disc, with the prestigious Scottish based company Linn, the group chose a programme of mainly Telemann, the best known composer of his time and believed to have been the most prolific of all time; recorder players of my generation were brought up on Telemann some sixty years ago.

Recommended - [Linn CKD 368].

Peter Grahame Woolf

At a further London recital in Marylebone, Ensemble Meridiana gave a foretaste of a projected French baroque CD, including Rebel's extraordinary Les Characteres de la Danse, which traverses breathlessly Courante, Menuet, Bouree, Sarabande, Gigue, Rigaudon, Passpied, Gavotte, Loure, Musette etc all in about seven minutes; a real gem! PGW