Composer to the court of Sweden's King Gustav III, Joseph Martin Kraus (1756–92) travelled to Europe to study musical theater. During a final sojourn in Paris, the King commissioned him to arrange incidental music to accompany a staging of Molière's musical comedy Amphitryon.
"The version recorded here is a transcription and partial reorganization of the original material by Johann Friedrich Grenser (1758–95), like Kraus, a German-born Swede. As played by the period-instrument Amphion Wind Octet, the music is utterly delightful—its programmatic nature lends the whole suite a charming and upbeat character, and Grenser's liberties with orchestration and tonal color only add to the attractions of the music…. This recording can be very confidently recommended as an example of great theater music from the transitional period between late classicism and early romanticism."—Notes