As one of the world's foremost interpreters of Baroque keyboard music on the modern piano, Angela Hewitt has established a fine reputation for impeccable playing and fresh musical insights. Listeners who cherish her award-winning recordings on Hyperion of the music of Johann Sebastian Bach have already experienced her exquisite playing, and they will be delighted to hear this selection of sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti, Bach's contemporary and an innovator whose compositions influenced the development of the Classical sonata. Some of these selections are well known, particularly the Sonata in C major, Kk159, the Sonata in D major, Kk96, and the Sonata in E major, Kk380, which are often anthologized, though Hewitt hasn't packed this disc with greatest hits (with 555 sonatas to choose from, there are many less familiar that deserve attention). Hewitt's performances are thoughtfully phrased, polished in tone, and rhythmically precise with a modicum of rubato, and she is alert to the subtleties that make this music so beguiling. Hewitt recorded these 16 sonatas in the Beethovensaal in Hannover, where she made her first Bach recordings for Hyperion 20 years previously, and the acoustics are nearly ideal for her style.
This luxurious set containing 39 CDs, 3 DVDs, 1 CD-Rom and four detailed booklets will tell you the full story of Baroque opera in Italy, France, England, and Germany. No fewer than 17 complete operas (including two on DVD) and two supplementary CDs (the dawn of opera, Overtures for the Hamburg Opera) provide the most comprehensive overview of the genre ever attempted! The finest performers are assembled here under the direction of René Jacobs and William Christie to offer you 47 hours of music. An opportunity to discover or to hear again the masterpieces of Baroque opera, some of which have been unavailable on CD for many years.
This recording presents music by two Scarlattis: Alessandro (1660-1725), composer of innumerable vocal and chamber works, and his son Domenico (1685-1757), famous mostly for his several hundred keyboard sonatas. Alessandro is represented by six Concerti Grossi, a Sonata, and a Sinfonia; Domenico by three Sinfonias. All feature solo instruments: harp, recorder, and most prominently, violins and continuo cello. Alessandro fostered his son's talent, but the two eventually, perhaps inevitably, became rivals, and Domenico left his native Rome for Portugal and then Spain.
In this new recording, Scherzi Musicali explores the fascinating world of Alessandro Scarlatti s Arcadian cantatas: the six mostly unpublished cantatas selected here sublimate the affects of nymphs and shepherds far from their beloved. Both the arias and the recitatives are exceptionally beautiful, varied and colorful: the accomplished theatrical sense of these cantatas has stimulated the soprano Deborah Cachet, the baritone Nicolas Achten and the abundant instrumental forces that provide a setting for their voices to a passionate and captivating realization, in which poetry, rhetoric, inventive ornamentation and opulence of sound reign supreme. In about 10 years, Scherzi Musicali has become one of the brightest stars in the early music cosmos, and is renowned for its dynamic interpretations of seventeenth and eighteenth century repertoire which its musicians explore with insatiable appetite and zeal. Whether uncovering lost gems of a forgotten musical heritage or revisiting staples of the baroque repertoire, the musicians of Scherzi Musicali apply the same exacting approach to all of the works they interpret, using philological research and reflection to guide them in their never-ending quest for the most accurate and historical performance style.
Fanfare magazine has written, "It is beginning to become an unnecessary exercise for me to praise the Camerata Koln in the highest terms in these pages." This month the ensemble turns to Alessandro Scarlatti, a composer known as the master of the Neapolitan opera seria but yet to be recognized as a writer of highly nuanced chamber music such as the Seven Sonatas for Flute, Violins, Viola and Bass being recorded here for the first time. This is a lovely disc!
At 1st sight, they appear to have nothing in common – but disregarding the stylistic elements & a difference of 2 centuries, you soon recognize that both are in a sense, musical architects, who as piano virtuosos were equally interested in miniature forms & inspired by folk music. On the 1 hand you have Scarlatti, who, after moving to Spain in 1729 composed almost exclusively for harpsichord & integrated elements of Spanish folklore into his compositions in an experimental way; on the other hand Bartk, who boosted the recognition of the rich native Hungarian peasant songs to an independent folk art, & was also influenced by Arabic folk music.