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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Blue Hour' - Weber, Brahms, Mendelssohn
Artist - Andreas Ottensamer

For those not in the know, Andreas Ottensamer is an Austrian clarinetist and is the principal clarinetist of the Berlin Philharmonic.

Ottensamer performs as a soloist in the major concert halls around the world, with orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, the Seoul Philharmonic, the Orchestre Metropolitain, the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic under Mariss Jansons, Sir Simon Rattle, Andris Nelsons, Yannick Nezet-Seguin, Alan Gilbert and Lorenzo Viotti.

His artistic partnerships as a chamber musician include work with Yuja Wang, Leonidas Kavakos, Janine Jansen, Lisa Batiashvili, Nemanja Radulovic, Nicolas Altstädt and Sol Gabetta.

In 2005 Ottensamer founded the clarinet trio “The Clarinotts” with his father Ernst and brother Daniel.

He is also artistic director of the ” Bürgenstock Festival” in Switzerland, together with pianist José Gallardo, and the “Artström Festival” in Berlin.

His latest release, Blue Hour is a collaboration with phenomenal pianist Yuja Wang, in which he explores the music of Mendelssohn and his contemporaries through concertante works and arrangements for the clarinet.

1.2. Intermezzo in A Major. Andante teneramente (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Popov), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
2.1. Allegro, Andreas Ottensamer (Berliner Philharmoniker)
3.2. Adagio ma non troppo, Andreas Ottensamer (Berliner Philharmoniker)
4.3. Rondo, Andreas Ottensamer (Berliner Philharmoniker)
5.No. 6 Allegretto con moto (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
6.No. 1 Andante un poco agitato (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
7.1. Wie Melodien zieht es mir (Transcr. for Clarinet and Piano), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
8.No. 4 Agitato e con fuoco (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
9.No. 3 Andante tranquillo (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
10.1. Allegro con fuoco, Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
11.2. Andante con moto, Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
12.3. Rondo. Allegro, Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
13.No. 6 Allegretto tranquillo (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
14.No. 2 Allegrio leggiero (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)
15.No. 4 Andante sostenuto (Arr. for Clarinet and Piano by Ottensamer), Andreas Ottensamer (Yuja Wang)

On a rather exceptional new album of work (which also features the Berliner Philharmoniker with Mariss Jansons) you simply cannot refrain from being lovingly swept along by each and every one of these lush compositions.

For with an album that creates its very own soundscape of clarinet, piano, and orchestra from the off, both Ottensamer's and Wang's majestic playing is a joy to behold.

Quite easily one of the best clarinetists I have ever heard, Ottensamer's precision and clarity combined with Wang's precise and cultured piano playing brings forth a truly beautiful sound.

With all the composers featured being German Romantics it's obvious that this place, this period in time is where Ottensamer especially believes the best music for the clarinet is to be found.

Furthermore, here on Blue Hour, the artists are clearly masters of their craft and hence compliment each other perfectly.

Oh, and as for that title for the album, well, as Ottensamer himself reveals, "There’s a question over whether you give albums a 'title' at all or not, but I was simply so bored by all those very obvious titles like 'The Romantic Clarinet', which just make my eyes roll."

"So we decided if it was going to have a title, it should be more atmospheric. It has two meanings: one is an allusion to the blue flower that was a symbol of the Romantic movement at that time, so it fits well with that music."

"The other, the main reason for this choice, is connected with the picture on the cover: the 'blue hour' is a time of day just after the sun has set, or just before it rises, when you get a unique kind of mood."

Official Purchase Link