Mattias Spee has a distinct preference for contemporary and lesser known repertoire. “I would like to bring hidden treasures from music history into the limelight.”
Mattias Spee (1997) studied with David Kuyken and Ralph van Raat, among others. He won several prizes, at the Prinses Christina Concours, the Steinway Piano Competition and the VriendenCultuurPrijs. Spee has a distinct preference for contemporary and lesser known repertoire. “I would like to bring hidden treasures from music history into the limelight,” says the pianist.
For the adventurous Dutch TRPTK label he has started a series with – unjustly – forgotten composers under the motto ‘Eclipse’. The first part is dedicated to the Austrian Joseph Wölfl (1773-1812), a contemporary and rival of Beethoven. He left behind a considerable body of work including symphonies, string quartets, operas, and the requisite piano concertos and sonatas.
Wölfl was particularly tall in stature, equipped with large hands and a virtuoso pur sang: with ease he could span thirteen keys. His music has a strong and penetrating character. While the often gruff Beethoven performed mainly for the old elite, the friendly Wölfl appealed to a much wider audience. Wölfl was an eminent improviser and he was also extremely popular as a teacher. He traveled extensively throughout Europe and could be found not only in concert halls but also regularly at the gaming tables.
Colorful is the Sonata in C minor with which the album opens. The Fugue in particular continues to resonate for minutes. The 9 Variations on an Andante is evidence of great musical imagination. The Sonata in B minor is compelling and the Waltz in C minor forms a beautiful conclusion.
For Mattias Spee the start of his Eclipse series for TRPTK is “a dream come true, the start of a great journey. I stand squarely behind my debut and find myself aligned with the views of Brendon Heinst, a recording engineer driven by passion and enthusiasm, just like me. I hope that this lesser-known repertoire by Joseph Wölfl will introduce a new audience to classical music, a fascinating world with which far too few are familiar. In short, I wish that many will enjoy this particularly beautiful music.”
Classical – Classical (1750-1830)
Muziekcentrum van de Omroep – Studio 1, Hilversum (NL)
June 11th, 2021
"With the inner peace that his playing expresses, Spee shows in this work, par excellence, that he is capable of becoming a pianist of stature."
Harry-Imre Dijkstra, Opus Klassiek
"Spee’s judicious and stylish elegance, yet intensely effective playing will not fail to conquer the hearts of even the most vigorous doubter. Yes! This is wonderful stuff!"
Adrian Quanjer, HRAudio
"This is an enchanting release! The music is not complex but utterly beautiful, and Brendon Heinst always makes the finest recordings that are available."