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Cat. No. CHAN 7132 Price: 0 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 7132 - The Goossens Family
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Goossens: Phantasy Concerto / Symphony No. 1:
CHSA 5068(**)

Available From: 17 August 2000
Leon Goossens was induced to play the oboe. There was no pressure put on him: he was simply involved in a well-laid plan to make the oboe his natural choice. It was a very subtle scheme carefully worked out by his father, conductor of the Carl Rosa Orchestra. The young boy would be taken to the opera to watch his father conduct, whereupon an assistant conductor would sit by his side and quietly nudge him every time the oboe made an entry. So inevitably the oboe came to be the most familiar of all the instruments and the most endearing.

When Goossens began oboe lessons in 1908 it was a low point in British oboe playing and he did not have the role-models he expected. As soon as Leon Goossens heard the Belgian oboist De Busscher play, however, he recognised that it was the example he had longed for. From this time onwards there were new standards to emulate, and the basic principles of the Belgian school became absorbed and were then transformed into a unique approach to the oboe. Thus when De Busscher left for the USA in 1916, it was inevitable that his place should be taken by Leon Goossens, even though he was just sixteen.

It was after the war that the public and critics became aware of his unique talents, and before long he was being saluted as the greatest oboe player in the world. It was the glorious singing nature of his playing that won him such praise, a masterly combination of faultless phrasing, subtle nuances and a ravishing tone.

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