Ackermann’s Repository of Arts/Series 1/Volume 1/March 1809/Review of New Music


Three Sonatas for the Piano-forte, in which are introduced six favourite Irish Airs, with Accompaniments for the German Flute and Violoncello; composed and dedicated to Mr. E. Bunting. By J. Woelfl . Op. 48. London, printed and sold by Preston, 97, Strand.

We regret that oar limits will not allow us to enter into an analysis of the merits of the above three sonatas, which will be found extremely brilliant, and written with the usual taste and judgment of their celebrated author, without being difficult as to execution. We were much pleased with the manner in which the Irish airs are introduced, the simple but beautiful melody of which has lost nothing by being transplanted into a foreign soil; a commendation which we have not at all times had it in our power to bestow upon some other foreign composers, under whose hands the originality of national song has been sacrificed by too studied and artificial accompaniments. The flute part, in which the character of the instrument is happily preserved, may be executed by a moderate performer: and the whole of this work is well calculated to afford an evening's treat to a musical family.

J. Woelfl's Cuckoo Concerto for the Piano-forte, with the Accompaniments of a full Band. Print and sold by Goulding. Op. 49.

Mr. Woelfl's Piano-forte Concertos are deservedly ranked among the first compositions of the present day for that instrument, both in point of musical science and originality; and the present work certainly does not detract in either respect from the author's fame: on the contrary, if we were inclined to form a comparison, we should

avow our partiality to the Cuckoo Concerto, in preference to most of Mr. W’s anterior works, as particularly abounding in marks of the author’s harmonic genius: nor is the present work so difficult of execution as other concertos of the same author, the Calm, Military Concerto, &c. since the most intricate passages are written in a twofold manner, so as to bring them within the reach of a moderately skilled performer.

A set of Violin Quartets composed by Mr. Woelfl, will appear in a few days, at Lavenn’s, in Bond-street, dedicated to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. They have been played at some private parties, and report speaks highly of their merit.