The Telemark Chamber Orchestra is a pickup group that performs around southern Norway, without any fixed home base. On this little release it offers a standard program of familiar orchestral selections. The standout here is the performance of Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 12 in A major, K. 414, by pianist Ingrid Andsnes; she is the sister of Leif Ove Andsnes, although nobody makes much of a point of saying so. Her reading is luminously clear and graceful, with the smallest contrapuntal details in the left hand integrated into the overall line. The orchestra's string tone doesn't have the brilliance that can result when players work together over a long period, but its friction-heavy surfaces generally work well with the dry interpretations offered here. The Haydn Symphony No. 49 in F major, Hob. 1:49 ("La passione"), is brisk, crackling, even tough. Only the Serenade, Op. 20, of Edward Elgar disappoints; it's hard to think of a rationale for conductor Lars-Erik ter Jung's resolutely unsentimental, sinewy performance, but any number of other performances come closer to the work's essence. All the repertoire on the album is well-traveled, but the presence of the startling Ingrid Andsnes Mozart concerto performance makes it worth the investment.
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AllMusic Review by James Manheim
|Symphony No. 49 in F minor, H. 1/49 "La Passione"|
|Serenade, Op. 20|
|Concerto No. 12 in A major, for piano & orchestra, K. 414|