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Johan van Veen
musica Dei donum, July 2020

Barthold Kuijken is the artistic director of the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, with which he has made several fine recordings in recent years. Here is another one; he brings in his vast experience in performing baroque music and his thorough knowledge of the repertoire and of performance practice. This results in a disc which will give immense pleasure not only to flute aficionados, but to anyone who likes baroque instrumental music. Kuijken's subtle playing and his tasteful ornamentation are a delight to listen to. The members of the orchestra are his congenial partners. This is a disc well suited to repeated listening. © 2020 musica Dei donum Read complete review



Raymond Tuttle
Fanfare, January 2020

France is represented by the concertos by Leclair and Blavet, although they are not in a purely French style. Alert readers may realize that Leclair’s concerto also has been played on a violin or an oboe. Rampal’s Erato recording of this concerto has a joy and lightness that is missing from this more sober performance, but, in all fairness, Kuijken’s is more cantabile.

… Kuijken’s soulfulness is a unique virtue.

The Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra here is comprised of two violins, and one viola, cello, violine, and harpsichord. They provide their artistic director and sometime conductor with stylish and earnest support. © 2020 Fanfare Read complete review



Todd Gorman
American Record Guide, November 2019

Barthold Kuijken is one of the greatest baroque flutists of our time, and his playing here is splendid. …There are difficult passages or ornaments that are handled magnificently. He is balanced well with the ensemble… © 2019 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide




Alain Steffe
Pizzicato, August 2019

Naxos CD brings together five flute concertos by Antonio Vivaldi, Giovanni Batista Pergolesi, Jean-Marie Leclair, Michel Blavet and Georg Friedrich Telemann. On the baroque flute, the seventy-year-old Barthold Kuijken, brother of Sigiswald and Wieland, inspires with his skilled musical playing, which makes the works appear in the best light. He is accompanied by the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, of which he is the musical director. The ensemble approaches the music in a very fresh and joyful manner. © 2019 Pizzicato Read complete review



Brian Wilson
MusicWeb International, July 2019

The Leclair Op.7 concertos are more usually recorded with solo violin, as on Fabio Biondi’s album with Europa Galante for Glossa (Nos. 1, 3, 4 and 5, GCD923407). Those who know Biondi’s well-earned reputation for lively performances may be surprised to discover that Kuijken outdoes him in that respect, without ever sounding as if he is simply showing off his virtuosity. Both are presumably mindful of Leclair’s dictum that allegro should not mean too fast, but gai.

…The new recording offers some very civilised music in very civilised performances to which I shall doubtless wish to return. © 2019 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Records International, July 2019

The five works here demonstrate how concertos for the flute differ in Germany, Italy, and France. Outer movements usually retain the virtuosic elements that characterize the concertos of Vivaldi, but the Frenchman Michel Blavet infiltrates an exquisite Gavotte into his work, while Telemann’s superb melodies and rich harmonies are characteristic features of his concerto. © 2019 Records International



iClassical, July 2019

This release is to be welcomed not merely for its variety, which enabled me to happily listen to the entire CD in one setting, but also for the quality of the playing of Barthold Kuijken, who must surely be the best of baroque flautists, and the exuberant performance of the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra. These are fine performances that benefit from Barthold Kuijken’s assiduous study of the music of these five composers and they provide entertainment and enlightenment in equal measure. I have no hesitation in recommending this release to anyone with an interest in baroque music not merely aficionados of the baroque flute. Combine all of these factors with a sympathetic recording and this makes the CD a clear choice for our bargain of the month award. © 2019 iClassical Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, June 2019

Appearing in Naxos’s ‘Early Music’ collection, we have a highly desirable release that offers five flute concertos from the Baroque era played on period instruments. The programme notes, from the soloist, Barthold Kuijken, relate the events that led up to the discovery in 2010 of a copy of Vivaldi’s long-lost concerto that carried the title, Il Gran Mogol, though no one knows why it gained ‘The wealthy man’ name. At that time, in the early part of the Eighteenth century, it was customary for the outer movements to be quick and of a pleasing disposition, Vivaldi and Pergolesi coming from the Italian school that had also much influenced the French composers here represented by Jean-Marie Leclair and Michel Blavet. While they do not make excessive demands on the soloist, the instrument was still in the development stage, the soloist here playing a copy of a flute made in Brussels in 1735, at much the same time as these works were being composed. The composer’s requested accompaniments were limited in size and scope, the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra here reduced to two violins, viola, cello, violone and harpsichord. As was the custom at the time, the solo part was offered to various instruments, and you might be familiar with the Leclair as a violin concerto. In both versions the dance-like outer movements are delightful. Lesser known is an equally pleasing concerto by Michel Blavet, long-time principal flute in the Paris Opera. Finally, from the most prolific composer of his time, the German composer, Georg Philipp Telemann, was indebted to the Italian-style for his concerto to which he then added a second slow movement. Recorded in 2013, 2014 and 2018, one or two sour notes in the accompaniment of the Blavet would point to recorded concert performances. Balance is very good and the sound is very consistent over this long period. © 2019 David’s Review Corner





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