Anders Eidsten Dahl, Arvid Engegard, Atle Sponberg, Embrik Snerte: Mozart and the Organ

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Klasycyzm / Organ Solos / Church Sonatas
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In a letter to his father Leopold, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote of his relationship to the organ: “In my eyes and ears, the organ is the queen of instruments.”
In spite of his enthusiasm for the instrument and the fact that Mozart himself liked to play the organ, he did not compose much music for “the queen of instruments”. The organists of the day improvised when they played for mass, and the organ at that time was not a concert instrument in need of a wide-ranging repertoire.
Mozart’s original music for organ consists of 17 one-movement “Epistle sonatas” — chamber music written between 1772 and 1780 for masses in Salzburg. The instrumentation for 14 of these is two violins and basso continuo, while the remaining three are written for more instruments. The pieces are short — this is music written to be played between the reading of texts. The organ is given an ever greater concertizing role from the first to the last, and the Sonata in C (K336) can be described as a small organ concerto.
In 1790 Mozart was commissioned to write music for what was known as a “Flötenuhr” — a large grandfather clock containing a self-playing organ. The instrument was popular at the time — there are also compositions for the instrument written by Handel, C.P.E. Bach and Haydn. Often the music was meant to describe an event or situation — the music Mozart was commissioned to write was to be played in a wax museum in memory of Field Marshal Laudon. Mozart was not especially fond of the “Flötenuhr” as an instrument, yet the works are compositions of exceptionally high musical quality. Here the mature Mozart reveals his gifts as a contrapuntalist and his ability to create singable melodies and forward-looking harmonies. The pieces are virtuosic and to some extent must be arranged if they are to be played by someone performing them on the organ.
In addition to organist Anders Eidsten Dahl, the musicians playing on the 14 Church Sonatas are violinists Arvid Engegård and Atle Sponberg and bassoonist Embrik Snerte. Mozart’s work for “Flötenuhr” was recorded in St. Margaret’s Church in Oslo on an organ clearly inspired by southern German baroque organs.

Anders Eidsten Dahl (organ)
Anders Eidsten Dahl (b. 1976 in Drammen) graduated with a degree in church music from the Norwegian Academy of Music and later completed a Master’s degree in solo organ performance at the same institution. Following two years of solo performance study at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen, he gave debut concerts in Copenhagen and Oslo in 2003. He has studied organ with Professor Terje Winge, cathedral organist Kåre Nordstoga and Professor Hans Fagius.
Eidsten Dahl is much in demand as organ soloist, chamber musician and harpsichordist, and he has given organ concerts at festivals in a number of European countries. His repertoire spans from the Baroque to the music of today, with emphasis on J. S. Bach and organ music from the Romantic period. Since 2001 he has served as organist and director of music at Bragernes Church in Drammen, where he is artistic and administrative director of the church’s organ concert series.
A recipient of the Government Work Scholarship for Younger and Newly Established Artists, Eidsten Dahl has released a number of critically acclaimed albums on the LAWO Classics label. He is also Associate Professor of organ at the Norwegian Academy of Music.

Arvid Engegård (violin)
Arvid Engegård was born in Bodø, Norway, in 1963. At age eleven he led his first string quartet in concerts throughout Norway. After receiving a degree in violin from Trondheim Conservatory of Music at age sixteen, he continued his studies at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. He later studied with Sándor Végh in Salzburg, Austria, and was invited to lead Camerata Academica, a position he held for eight years. In 1991 Engegård was asked to lead the Orlando Quartet in Amsterdam.
As violinist and chamber musician, Engegård has performed at many of Europe’s most prestigious festivals, including the Lockenhaus Chamber Music Festival, the Salzburg Festival, Musiktage Mondsee, and the Mozarteum Foundation’s Mozart Week. Engegård’s career as conductor has steadily advanced since 1999, working with orchestras in Norway and abroad. He has previously released two recordings as conductor on the LAWO Classics label: "W.A. Mozart" (LWC1071) – a recording of Concertos K. 299 and K. 297B – with the Oslo Philharmonic, and "Mozart, Hvoslef Sæverud" (LWC1100) with oboist David Friedemann Strunck and the Oslo Philharmonic. In 2015 he released "Duo Brilliante" (LWC1080) as violinist, with double bassist Knut Erik Sundquist and the Norwegian Radio Orchestra.
Arvid Engegård is artistic director of the Lofoten International Chamber Music Festival. In 2000 he received the 'Nordlys Prize' at the Northern Lights Festival in Tromsø, Norway. In 2006 he founded the Engegård Quartet, which performs throughout Europe and is one of Scandinavia’s most soughtafter chamber music ensembles.

Atle Sponberg (violin)
Atle Sponberg has earned a reputation as a multifaceted musician. He is active as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestra leader, has toured throughout Norway, and has played at festivals all over Europe, in the USA and in Australia.
Sponberg has performed as a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra, the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Norwegian Wind Ensemble, the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, the Trondheim Soloists, the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra, the Tromsø Chamber Orchestra, the Pori Sinfonietta in Finland, Nordbotten Chamber Orchestra, the Northern BBC Orchestra and the Ulster Symphony Orchestra. He has collaborated with conductors including Rolf Gupta, Ari Rasilainen, Walter Weller, Andrew Manze, Øyvind Gimse, Terje Tønnesen and Bryden Thompson.
As a chamber musician he has appeared at festivals in England, Ireland, Finland, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands, Australia and Norway. Sponberg has played with musicians including Adrian Brendel, Prya Mitchell, Christian Poltera, Kathryn Stott, Nicholas Dautricourt, Jan-Erik Gustafsson, Alexander Sitkovetsky, Piers Lane, Henning Kraggerud, Arvid Engegård, Juliet Jopling, Håvard Gimse, Øyvind Gimse, Øystein Birkeland, Knut Erik Sundquist and the Vertavo String Quartet.
Among Sponberg’s many recordings are the critically acclaimed Quietude with the Gjøvik Sinfonietta, Tango for 3, several CDs with the Engegård Quartet and releases featuring new music by Antonio Bibalo, Randall Meyers, Ståle Kleiberg and Nikolai Apollyon, among others. He also has many years of experience in the areas of early music and Argentinian tango.
Sponberg is a permanent member of the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and is the artistic director of Orkester Innlandet. He plays tango in a number of ensembles with bandoneonists Marcelo Nisinman, Åsbjørg Ryeng, Andreas Rokseth and Per Arne Glorvigen, among others.
Atle Sponberg plays on a violin made in 1752 by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini in Milan, on loan from the Savings Bank Foundation DNB.

Anders Eidsten Dahl (organ)
Arvid Engegård (violin)
Atle Sponberg (violin)
Embrik Snerte (bassoon)

Mozart: Andante in F major, K616
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 1 in E flat major for organ & strings, K67
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 2 in B flat major for organ & strings, K68
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 3 in D major for organ & strings, K69
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 4 in D major for organ & strings, K144
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 5 in F major for organ & strings, K145
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 6 in B flat major for organ & strings, K212
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 7 in F major for organ & strings, K224
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 8 in A major for organ & strings, K225
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 9 in G major for organ & strings, K241
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 10 in F major for organ & strings, K244
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 11 in D major for organ & strings, K245
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 15 in C major for organ & strings, K328
Mozart: Church (Epistle) Sonata No. 17 in C major for organ & strings, K336
Mozart: Fantasia in F minor for a mechanical organ, K594
Mozart: Fantasia in F minor for a mechanical organ, K608

wydano: 08 September 2023
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Lawo Classics
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-91)
Anders Eidsten Dahl, Arvid Engegard, Atle Sponberg, Embrik Snerte
Mozart and the Organ
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