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Altissima - Works For High Baroque Trumpet

Altissima - Works For High Baroque Trumpet

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The baroque trumpeter Josh Cohen is among the most sought-after clarino specialists in North America. A native of the Washington, DC area, he performs regularly with most of the leading early music ensembles in North America and has appeared as principal or solo baroque trumpet with ensembles such as Tafelmusik (Toronto), Washington Bach Consort, Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, Arion Orchestre Baroque (Montreal), The Bach Sinfonia (Washington, DC), Seraphic Fire (Miami), Apollo’s Fire (Cleveland), and the Sebastians (New York) to name but a few.

The development of historically informed trumpet playing has come a long way since the very early days of the movement, from coiled trumpets – first produced by Steinkopf-Finke, and played by Walter Holy in a 1962 recording of the Second Brandenburg Concerto under Harnoncourt – to the first modern baroque trumpets of Meinl & Lauber. Devoted to a broad cross-section of trumpet repertoire from the late seventeenth century through the mid-eighteenth, this recording shows how far the art of playing the baroque trumpet has advanced.


This release by Baroque trumpeter Josh Cohen and the small Ensemble Sprezzatura features sounds from a natural valveless trumpet that are not often heard. Cohen is one of a group of players, at first mostly American, who have cultivated not only the playing technique but the repertory that goes with this instrument, much of it German and most of it unknown. For the full effect, sample the high Cs in several movements of the Sinfonia à 7 of Johann Samuel Endler. Another highlight is Telemann's Concerto in D major, TWV 43:D7, where the continuo group includes a bassoon, and Telemann gets delightful sonorities out of this rather unwieldy group. The backing from Ensemble Sprezzatura under director Daniel Abraham is lively and sensitive to the soloist's challenges. Brass players may be especially alert to the technical rigors involved in Cohen's playing, but any Baroque enthusiast will find this a diverting release that brings home just how far trumpet playing has advanced over the last 50 years.

-- (James Manheim)

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  • Release Specifications

    • Number of Discs: 1
    • Release Date:
    • Label: Chandos
    • UPC/Barcode: 095115082829
    • Item Number: CHAN 0828