Elizabeth Hainen (harp), Bulgarian National Radio Orchestra/Rossen Milanov


AvieAV 2221 ***

For Berlioz, he was a magician, “the Liszt of the harp”. The English harpist Elias Parish Alvars (1808-49) was king of his profession, the man said to have invented the three-hand trick (melody in the middle, with elaborate decorations above and below), which pianists borrowed and love to this day. Parish Alvars’s florid G minor Concerto of 1842 is at the heart of this new CD from nimble Philadelphia Orchestra solo harpist Elizabeth Hainen. She adds works by Johann Georg Albrechtsberger (his Concerto in C from 1773) and Camille Saint-Saëns (the Morceau de concertfrom 1919) to offer a selection of music that covers three centuries. Hainen’s playing is neat and well-turned, though the playing of the Bulgarian National Radio Orchestra under Rossen Milanov can sound rather utilitarian, particularly in the Saint-Saëns. See url.ie/55bd