Artist: Thalia Ensemble
Title: Reicha: Wind Quintets
Genre: Classical
Release Date: 2015
Duration: 01:07:17
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz
Label: LINN Records
Source: LINN

Thalia Ensemble, whose prize-winning programme included works by Antoine Reicha, was praised by the jury for its beautiful ensemble sound, as well as the ensemble’s lively communication. The competition is renowned for launching the careers of many notable ensembles, such as Palladian Ensemble, Profeti della Quinta and Ensemble Meridiana.

Premiered in Paris in the early nineteenth century these works were an overnight sensation, recognized across Europe as the pinnacle of their genre. More than any other composer who wrote for winds, Reicha produced works that were hailed as worthy counterparts to the string quartet. An experienced flautist, Reicha was able to craft quintets that successfully integrated each wind instrument, employing its unique character and technical anomalies to full effect. As well as taking influence from his close acquaintances Haydn and Beethoven, Reicha’s melodic style is Mozartian in flavour, spiced with subtle chromatic tinges and quirky syncopations. In addition to the quintets Reicha’s Adagio ‘pour le cor anglais’ is a fine addition to the programme.

Anyone who has played a woodwind instrument is likely to have encountered the jolly wind quintets of Antoine Reicha, a Czech composer active in Paris at the start of the 19th century. Funny how some composers just manage to find a genre to suit them: while we have forgotten Reicha’s many ambitious operas and symphonies, these ensemble pieces live on because they are so satisfying to play and such fun to hear. This new recording shows off the recent winners of the York Early Music International Young Artists Competition, an Amsterdam period-instrument ensemble. Once past a rather excruciatingly tuned chord early on, they respond to Reicha’s easy-going charm with skill. –Nicholas Kenyon, The Observer


  1. Quintet No. 3 in G Major, Op. 88: I. Introductione. Lento – Allegro assai – 9:37
  2. Quintet No. 3 in G Major, Op. 88: II. Andante – 5:11
  3. Quintet No. 3 in G Major, Op. 88: III. Menuetto. Allegro vivo – 3:23
  4. Quintet No. 3 in G Major, Op. 88: IV. Finale. Allegro vivace – 6:30
  5. Adagio in D Minor: ‘Pour le cor anglais’ – 7:02
  6. Quintet No. 6 in B-Flat Major, Op. 100: I. Poco adagio – Allegro – 12:40
  7. Quintet No. 6 in B-Flat Major, Op. 100: II. Andante poco adagio – 7:23
  8. Quintet No. 6 in B-Flat Major, Op. 100: III. Minuetto. Allegro scherzo – 5:30
  9. Quintet No. 6 in B-Flat Major, Op. 100: IV. Finale. Andante – Allegro assai – 10:04