Lil’ David played on his harp in biblical times long before anyone conceived of actually writing music for it or employing it as an essential member of the symphony orchestra.
But in spite of its advanced age, the harp did not earn the respect it merits until the Franco-American Marcel Grandjanny adopted it as his chosen musical companion. It is a good thing he did, for were it not for his efforts to validate its importance, the very large and very hard to play harp would be one of the most underused members of the symphony orchestra.
And were it not for DELOS one would be hard put to find many CD’s dedicated to harp music. Music for Harp and Flute is the name of this 2002 release featuring two instruments long associated with ethereal sounds.
Center stage in this splendid recording are the Russian harpist Tatiana Oskolkova and flautist Oleg Sergeev, generously supported with the accompaniment of Constantine Orbelian’s Moscow Chamber Orchestra and its String Quartet, and the clarinet of Sergei Bolshakov.
The CD includes Mozart’s ubiquitous Concerto for Flute and Harp, Grandjanny’s Aria in Classic Style for Harp and Orchestra, Svetlanov’s Russian Variations for Harp and Orchestra, and Ravel’s miniature masterpiece Introduction and Allegro for Harp, Flute, Clarinet and String Quartet.
The playing of both soloists is exquisite, with Oskolkova producing a myriad sounds ranging from gossamer filigree to tapping on her instrument. Sergeev’s playing is agile and elegant in the Mozart and perfectly in sync with his fellow musicians in the Ravel.
Rafael de Acha