Magazine article Gramophone


Magazine article Gramophone


Article excerpt

1700' (G)

Caldara La morte di Abel--Sinfonia Durante Concerto a quattro in G minor Galuppi Concerto a quattro in G minor Geminiani Concerto grosso, Op 3 No 3 Locatelli Sinfonia funebre Mascitti Concerto, Op 7 No 2 Pugnani Sinfonia in E flat--Adagio Vivaldi Concerto, Op 12 No 3 RV124

Concerto Italia no / Rinaldo Alessandrini

Naive (F) 0P30568 (65' * DDD)

Arcangelo Corelli is the (unheard) presiding genius behind this sequel to Rinaldo Alessandrini's chronological survey of 17th-century Italian string music (6/12). The Roman master's influence is audible in works ranging from a concerto by the Paris-based Michele Mascitti--Corelli with an added touch of Gallic chic--via a gravely impressive sinfonia by Caldara, to a Galuppi conceito a quattro that stands on the cusp of a new age. Here and elsewhere, Corelli's trademark dignity and sobriety often receive a more extrovert, dramatic twist, in keeping with changing tastes. A G minor concerto by Francesco Durante combines tortuously chromatic fugal writing with violin fireworks, while the rhythmic and contrapuntal energy of a concerto by Corelli's pupil Geminiani reminds us that he was an exact contemporary of Handel in London.

Playing these assorted concertos and sinfonie one-to-a-part (plenty of 18th-century precedent here), Alessandrini and his crack players marry elegance with unfailing rhythmic zest, always attentive to textural clarity and the shaping of bass lines. The continuo (harpsichord and/ or theorbo) adds impetus without ever becoming irritatingly obtrusive. …

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