Title Record Review Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet BBC Radio 3 Media type Radio Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 7/11/20 Description [Transcript]: I’m really getting into my Beethoven arrangements this 250th anniversary year, and here’s another one from period wind ensemble Boxwood & Brass. I love the textures, the creamy clarinet, the slightly tart oboe sound, the deftly manipulated hand-stopped horns. This anonymous arrangement of the Pathetique sonata is from Vienna in 1810. … ‘The rondo finale of Beethoven’s Pathetique Sonata played by the period wind ensemble Boxwood & Brass in that Viennese arrangement. Those piquant timbres are equally effective in the Overture and incidental music from Beethoven’s Egmont and an arrangement of his seventh symphony, whose presto almost seems to chuckle with these period wind sounds. Beethoven Transformed they’ve called it, volume 1 [sic], it’s a new release from Resonus Classics.’ Producer/Author Andrew McGregor Persons Emily Worthington Title Classical CDs Weekly: Beethoven, Josquin, Tabea Debus Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet The Artsdesk Media type Web Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 7/11/20 Description "these two discs feature period arrangements of Beethoven, the technical and expressive demands demonstrating how good the players would have needed to be. ... this account [of Beethoven's Septet] brims with wit and energy. ... Friedrich Starke’s version of the Egmont Overture is magnificently earthy, neatly partnered with Boxwood bassoonist Robert Percival’s transcriptions of four extracts from Beethoven’s incidental music to Goethe’s play. Anonymous versions of the Sonata Pathétique and Symphony No. 7 take greater liberties, transposing, cutting and occasionally recomposing. They’re tremendous. Particularly the symphony, now in G major and shortened to help preserve the players’ lips. It makes for joyous listening, the first movement’s vivace a thrilling blend of chugging bassoons and brassy natural horns. These CDs are enchanting, funny and exciting. Even if your shelves are overburdened with Beethoven, make space for them." Producer/Author Graham Rickson URL https://www.theartsdesk.com/classical-music/classical-cds-weekly-beethoven-josquin-tabea-debus Persons Emily Worthington Title Beethoven: Septet in Eb Op. 20 (arr. Czerny)... Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet Fanfare Media type Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 30/05/20 Description "I quickly came to delight in the Boxwood musicians’ superb playing and vivid tonal palette, in writing that is sometimes highly demanding and virtuosic, especially in the final movement. ... The Boxwood musicians’ performance differs from that of another period-instrument ensemble, Mozzafiato (Sony), principally in its smoother, more burnished sonority—not that the more pungent Mozzafiato sound is a demerit—and in its more deliberate tempos in all movements except the Menuetto. The Boxwood ensemble offsets the greater energy of the Mozzafiato performance with care for phrasing and shaping. The tempo difference is especially marked in the Rondo finale, for which the Boxwood track listing curiously omits the tempo marking of Allegro. While I would wish for the prancing rhythm of the A section to be brought out more assertively in the Boxwood rendition, I find the Mozzafiato treatment and also that of the Vienna Wind Soloists (Decca) somewhat hurried. In the less frantically paced Boxwood performance, the listener can savor the beauty and poise of the playing and the clarity and precision of the articulation.
The sound of this recording is spacious, clear, well balanced, and realistic with excellent definition of the individual instruments and their timbres. This release demonstrates that the products of Beethoven’s youth, despite his dismissive attitude toward them, have much to offer and should not be overlooked. Those who enjoy Classical chamber music for winds will find much pleasure in this disc, which is recommended.
Producer/Author Daniel Morrison Persons Emily Worthington Title Beethoven Transformed vol. 1 Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet Early Music Review Media type Web Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 19/05/20 Description Czerny’s arrangement is a valuable rediscovery, which to my mind enhances the original. .... Both works are given charming performances by Boxwood and Brass, and indeed the distinctive sounds of their period instruments help to bring this music vividly to life. I have enjoyed very much both of the previous CDs by this enterprising group, and await with interest the continuation of this promising series. Producer/Author D. James Ross URL https://earlymusicreview.com/beethoven-transformed-volume-1/ Persons Emily Worthington Title Home listening: a Bach odyssey ends as non-stop Beethoven begins Degree of recognition National Media name/outlet The Guardian Media type Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 1/12/19 Description "Beethoven 250 gets off to a flying early start": Review of Beethoven Transformed vol. 1 Producer/Author Stephen Pritchard URL https://www.theguardian.com/music/2019/dec/01/angela-hewitt-bach-six-partitas-review-boxwood-brass-beethoven-transformed-vol-1-st-johns-advent Persons Emily Worthington Title Chamber Reviews: Beethoven Transformed vol. 1 Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet BBC Music Magazine vol. 28/3 Media type Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 1/12/19 Description "Boxwood & Brass prove dazzlingly persuasive advocates of the form. Founded in 2013, this sextet of clarinets, natural horns and bassoons brings vibrant musicality, a wonderful warmth of sound and total technical precision to this recording. ... these thoughtful and assured performances bring to life every subtlety and colour in these works, making for an instructive and hugely enjoyable listen." Producer/Author Kate Wakeling Persons Emily Worthington Title Andrew Benson Wilson - Earl Music Reviews + Degree of recognition National Media name/outlet Andrew Benson Wilson - Earl Music Reviews + Media type Web Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 7/11/19 Description "Boxwood & Brass have been exploring this repertoire since their foundation and are proving to be outstanding advocates of the music of the Harmonie. ... They play with a magnificent sense of period style and colour, all having solo roles as well as contributing to an outstanding consort sound" Producer/Author Andrew Benson-Wilson URL https://andrewbensonwilson.org/2019/11/07/beethoven-transformed/?fbclid=IwAR0WwiGZasyouJ9keHhhdf2A1llNnSzhfVky0qrTfKPmlvrWyNnerK53tAo Persons Emily Worthington Title Beethoven Transformed: volume 1 of Boxwood & Brass' new project Degree of recognition National Media name/outlet Planet Hughill Media type Web Country/Territory United Kingdom Date 6/11/19 Description "delightful and very, very full of colour. If you know Beethoven's Septet only in its original version and on modern instruments, then here you experience two layers of difference - the move from wind and strings to wind only and the move from modern to period instruments. The range of colours is magical ... Rhythmically the performance is full of an engaging bounce and lightness, and the Tempo di Menuetto and the Scherzo both make me want to smile. Being a serenade, the music in the Septet veers towards the lighter side, Beethoven enjoying himself. And it is clear that the musicians of Boxwood & Brass were doing so as well, and this enjoyment is clearly conveyed." Producer/Author Robert Hughill URL https://www.planethugill.com/2019/11/beethoven-transformed-volume-1-of.html?fbclid=IwAR0yTzQ0F50s3mqyF9Oj34dUuUzaYO6-MBRH5RRvVi_7ptGhOFzwhzZ_CWQ Persons Emily Worthington