by Daniel Hathaway
Patrons who packed the four sold-out houses last weekend at Severance Hall came to hear Carl Orff’s spirited medieval cantata Carmina Burana, but they were also treated to the bonus of an elegant curtain-raiser in Johann Sebastian Bach’s Concerto in A for oboe d’amore and strings with Robert Walters on the solo line.
Bach — that great recycler — turned several wind concertos from his days as court composer at Köthen into harpsichord concertos for his coffee house concerts with the Leipzig University Collegium Musicum between 1729 and 1741. Though the originals have been lost, they can be reconstructed by clever musicologists, as an uncredited arranger did for BWV 1055.
James Feddeck, stepping in for Franz Welser-Möst last weekend, led a string section pared down to eight first violins, six seconds, five violas, four cellos and two double basses, creating an admirable balance between soloist and orchestra [Read more…]