VIVALDI: Concerti con molti strumenti, Vol. 2 – Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante – Virgin Classics

by | Oct 20, 2005 | Classical CD Reviews | 0 comments

VIVALDI: Concerti con molti strumenti, Vol. 2 – Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante – Virgin Classics 5-45723-2 ****:

For spice and snap, Europa Galante’s second volume of Vivaldi concertos
for various instruments (including combinations of violins, hunting
horns, bassoons, oboes and cellos) – led with uncompromising ferocious
glee by Fabio Biondi – can’t be beat. Whether from the period after
Vivaldi had come in contact with Pisendel’s brilliant Dresden
orchestra, or under the usual influence of the wonderful musicians in
his charge at the Ospedale della Pietà orphanage in Venice, the music
may be little known (except for the D minor lute and viola d’amore
concerto with its famous slow movement, here given a reading of
ravishing beauty) but it is glorious.

The sound, recorded at the Auditorium Paganini in Parma, is
spectacular, with a bite and amplitude that simply defies belief, while
Toussaint Loviko’s booklet notes are not only illuminating but
colorful. Writing of the last two movements of the cello concerto RV
413, Loviko says, “The orchestra’s eloquent preparation for the entry
of the solo cellist in the central Largo and the flamboyant passage
work of the finale bring to mind the world of opera, and would have
given one of the young residents of the Pietà the chance briefly to
acquire the status of a diva while still remaining
inaccessible—invisible and protected from prying eyes and unmentionable
desire by an austere grill.”

– Laurence Vittes

 

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