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The Art of the Oboe – The Classical Era (Emma Black)

One of Australia’s finest classical exports releases her debut album, exploring the way Mozart, JC Bach and Johann Baptist Vanhal composed for the oboe during the Classical era.

Australian-born Emma Black is one of the world’s finest oboe players. The principal and solo oboist with the Wiener Akademie (Vienna) and Le Concert de la Loge (Paris), she also plays and records regularly with Musica Aeterna, Le Cercle de l’Harmonie, Concentus Musicus Wien and Les Talens Lyriques, and in Australia with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Antipodes and Pinchgut Opera.

On her debut album, Black explores the development of the oboe in the Classical era through quartets by Mozart, JC Bach and Johann Baptist Vanhal. It was around 1770 when the oboe began to be featured as a solo instrument in chamber music, and these four quartets demonstrate how perfectly the sweet, lyrical sound of the instrument sits alongside the resonance of the string instruments. Joined here by three superb musicians – Zoe Black (violin), Anne Harvey-Nagl (viola and violin) and Peter Trefflinger (cello) – these quartets sparkle and delight.

The album also features something of a reclamation on behalf of the oboe: Mozart’s Concerto in D major, K314, was originally written for oboe but transcribed and popularised in a version for flute. Here, Black and her colleagues return the favour with their performance of Mozart’s Quartet in D major, KV285, was originally written for flute but here recovered for oboe.

This recording, as part of Black’s PhD project, is the first in a series of four showcasing the four main types of oboes played today: Baroque, Classical, Romantic and modern


JOHANN CHRISTIAN BACH Quartet in B-flat major, B60

1 I. Allegro 7’57

2 II. Rondeau grazioso 4’27

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Oboe Quartet in F major, KV370 / 368b

3 I. Allegro 9’26

4 II. Adagio 3’05

5 III. Rondeau allegro 4’41

JOHANN BAPTIST VANHAL Oboe Quartet in F major, Op. 7 No. 1

6 I. Allegro moderato 4’52

7 II. Cantabile 4’52

8 III. Menuetto 3’18

9 IV. Presto 4’54

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Oboe Quartet in D major, KV285

10 I. Allegro 7’20

11 II. Adagio 2’56

12 III. Rondeau 4’54


13 Adagio in G major, KV580a 5’53

Music can change lives. For almost 20 years, the Hush Foundation has been working with renowned Australian artists to create music of joy and calm – originally to support children in hospital, and now enjoyed everywhere from concert halls to living rooms. In this latest offering from the Hush series, pianist Tony Gould and guitarist Peter Petrucci present music that can bring optimism even in the toughest times.The Hush Foundation, under the inspirational leadership of physician Professor Catherine Crock AM, transforms the healthcare experience for patients, families and staff through music and the performing arts. It has produced 17 albums, bringing some of Australia’s finest performers and composers together in collaborative partnerships that engage with the lived experience of people in the health system and other stressful environments. Hush albums are played not only in hospitals, but also in aged care, palliative care and childcare facilities to reduce stress and anxiety. Community and international orchestras also play music composed for Hush. In 2014, Hush’s contribution to Australian music was acknowledged with the APRA/AMCOS Award for Excellence.Gathering of Kindness recognises the power of the small acts of kindness and respect that build trust and create a sense of safety and security in difficult and challenging situations. ‘When we ask patients, their families and those working in healthcare “What matters to you?”’ says Professor Crock, ‘the single word at the top of the list is kindness.’Tony Gould and Peter Petrucci wrote the music on this album with the Hush ‘family’ firmly in mind. ‘We hope they serve at least one of music’s purposes in life, and that is to help calm our fellow humans in times when things aren’t going so well. Music can do this superbly. It can also give us joy, can foster kindness and a sense that, ultimately, everything will be all right.’ This latest album has been named after the healthcare events Hush has hosted since 2016. The Gathering of Kindness bring people working in health and aged care together to talk about ways kindness can flourish in their organisations and services. These events are being hosted throughout November at metro, regional and rural healthcare organisations across Victoria, and include live performances of Hush plays and music, healthcare book launches and panels, narrative and a range of self-care workshops, as well as updates on new research being undertaken. Hush is also hosting a ticketed event at KPMG in Melbourne on Thursday 14 November.›Pianist / composer / critic / author / academic / educator Tony Gould has been involved in music in Australia for over half a century. A prolific performer, composer and recording artist across several musical genres of art music, Tony has composed and performed alongside other renowned musicians Australia-wide and internationally. His numerous accolades include membership of the Order of Australia (AM) in recognition of his contribution to music.Peter Petrucci is one of Australia’s leading jazz guitarists, recognised for his virtuosity and lyricism in improvisations and artful compositions. He has released eight albums – the latest, They Know That We Know, in August 2019. Peter has performed locally and internationally supporting distinguished musicians and has appeared at numerous international jazz festivals, in the US, Canada, Germany, Italy, the Melbourne International Jazz Festival and the Wangaratta, Stonnington and Queensland Jazz Festivals. TRACKLISTING 1 All Things Good2 Anthem3 Calm4 Autumn Lullaby5 Quiet6 Spring Town7 It’s Up to You8 A Little Folk Song9 Essence10 Truth and Beauty11 The Softness of Air12 The Smile Peter Petrucci guitar – Tony Gould piano Tks 1-3, 5, 8, 10-12 composed by Tony Gould.Tks 4, 6, 7 and 9 composed by Peter Petrucci.