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The nimble Petri makes the recorder sound so right in Mozart – delightful!

January 10, 2008

Nalen Anthoni, Gramophone (UK)

The nimble Petri makes the recorder sound so right in Mozart – delightful!

Mozart's Flute Quartets played on recorders? Unusual but not improbable; and Michala Petri, who uses recorders in three different pitches, is likely to disarm resistance or hostility. She chooses a sopranino instrument for K298. But no shrill piping, no phlegmatic phrasing. The first movement is a theme and four variations, the overall marking Andantino implying a single tempo. But as Mozart offers each musician an individual role in each of the four variations, Petri treats the components as separate facets of a single entity. She relaxes or tightens the pace as necessary without compromising unity; and no one hogs the limelight. These artists know when to blend, separate or step forward without upstaging one another. The return to the theme at the end, not in the score and therefore "unauthorized" is, nevertheless, a thoughtful interpretative touch.
The sound on this disc (in SACD) is alluringly recorded - call the shots.