Another superb addition to Matthias Bamert's splendid series of recordings with the BBC Philharmonic of the orchestral music of Ernst von Dohnányi, this 2004 disc brings together three concerted works from the composer's early years in Tallahassee, FL. But although they were composed between 1946 and 1952, the Piano Concerto No. 2, the Violin Concerton No. 2, and the Concertino for harp and chamber orchestra all sound as if they could have been written between 1896 and 1914 in Budapest, Hungary: although war and fascism had driven Dohnányi from his place and time, it did not drive from him his place and time. Indeed, the works on this disc are just as tuneful and romantic as Dohnányi's earlier works and anyone who enjoyed them will enjoy these.
Which is just as anyone who has enjoyed earlier recordings in Bamert's series will enjoy this recording. Bamert remains Dohnányi's most passionate advocate and his interpretations are big, bold, and just sentimental enough to bring a tear to the eye. With the staggering virtuosity of pianist Howard Shelley, Bamert creates an ardent and massive Piano Concerto No. 2. With the seductive tone of violinist James Ehnes, Bamert creates a lyrical and monumental Violin Concerto No. 2. And with the subtle artistry of harpist Clifford Lantaff, Bamert creates a pastoral and evocative Concertino. The BBC Philharmonic plays with its customary power and precision and Chandos' sound is present and accounted for.