Notes and Editorial Reviews
Elephant House Quartet invites the listener for a stroll through the colourful oeuvre of Telemann — himself a gardening enthusiast — presenting a bouquet of chamber-musical jewels. Telemann’s Garden ranges from excerpts of solo fantasias for violin, flute and harpsichord to a sonata for viola da gamba and basso continuo, a trio sonata for violin, recorder and basso continuo, a suite for violin, flute and basso continuo, as well as one of the quartets Telemann wrote during his Paris sojourns. These pieces together constitute a fascinating portrait of one of the most prolific and successful composers of the Baroque era. Elephant House Quartet is a Baroque ensemble featuring virtuosos on each instrument in wonderful interaction, consisting of recorder player Bolette Roed, violinist Aureliusz Golinski, gambist Reiko Ichise and harpsichordist Allan Rasmussen. Telemann’s Garden marks their PENTATONE debut.
The Elephant House Quartet use period instruments or modern copies. One cannot fault the quality of the playing. It is exquisite, executed with style and eloquent lyricism. I love the way the passages are shaped with exemplary skill and control. One senses a close connection between the four players, who demonstrate a firm grip on the formal and artistic structure of the works with a sense of total engagement. Calm and meditative in the slow movements, buoyant in the faster movements – these are performances to cherish, with striking unity and intonation of the instruments that make a gorgeous sound. Allan Rasmussen’s harpsichord, a modern copy after Harrass (c. 1710), is one of the finest I have heard.
– MusicWeb International