26. Oct

With the album ‘The Trumpets of Matthias Höfs’ Höfs gives an insight into his private trumpet collection

In the course of his career he has not only collected a large number of modern trumpets, but also historical models which he even partly reconstructed himself. 'The gigantic variety of trumpet instruments has always fascinated me,' says Matthias Höfs. 'There is hardly any other instrument that is so versatile in sound and expression combined with this enormous dynamic range and possibilities'. In cooperation with the Bremen wind instrument manufacturer Thein Brass, a treasure chest of over 30 different instruments has been collected over the years, which Matthias Höfs opens for this album. Meanwhile he plays exclusively on the trumpets he helped develop.

The beginnings of the album as well as Höfs' history of the trumpet lie in the Baroque period and in Handel's most famous trumpet aria 'The Trumpet Shall Sound'. Despite the few natural tones of the baroque trumpet, Handel creates a harmonious musical statement. Matthias Höfs shines with a rare keyed trumpet in Haydn's Trumpet Concerto, in which the composer plays interestingly with the louder natural and the soft keyed tones, especially in the 2nd movement. Höfs demonstrates the special features of the cornet in an arrangement of Glazunov's Albumblatt (1899), and with his colleagues from German Brass, with whom he has toured the world for decades, he lets the Aida trumpet shine in Verdi's Triumphal March. Also with German Brass, he performs the arrangement of the 2nd movement of Marcello’s Oboe Concert on the so-called piccolo valve trumpet in high Bb/A, whose agility invites you to embellish the melodies. The unique combination of harp and descant horn and later in the piece piccolo trumpet is presented in Matthias Höfs' arrangement of 'Pavane pour une infante défunte', in which Ravel's sound conception is transferred into a miniature.
With three works of the 20th century Höfs enters the here and now: Skalkottas' Concertino for trumpet and piano and André Jolivet's Concertino for trumpet, piano and strings make full use of the possibilities of modern trumpets. Sections with march-like formulas, triplet tongues, delicate lyricism and gripping ascents to the highest heights - a compendium of all the technical elements necessary to master the instrument. Wolf Kerschek's 'Poem for Matthias' for flugelhorn, jazz trio and string quartet, whose calm melodic arcs, enriched by expressive jazz elements, bring out the soft elements of the flugelhorn, form the conclusion of this exciting album.

The album 'The Trumpets of Matthias Höfs' will be released on October 30, 2020 at Berlin Classics on CD and digitally on all streaming and download platforms.