The choice of repertoire is more or less predictable. There are no lesser known arias, and Gott sei Dank they have been grouped by opera but, within the operas, not in the order of appearance. The ordering of the operas seems haphazard, too. "What an ungrateful nit-picker!" I can hear readers mumble. "Of course they have decided the order to achieve as much variety as possible". But I am not so sure. Why, in that case, start the recital, after the Zauberflöte overture with two arias in a row sung by Russell Braun?
As long as there are violinists around like Giuliano Carmignola, classical music will never be a museum for the dead because in his hands, Mozart's Concertos are brilliantly, vibrantly, irresistibly alive. Carmignola, who later signed with Sony and then Deutsche Gramophone after these recordings were made in 1997, is a violinist with a light bow, a warm tone, an impeccable intonation and a superlative technique, all of which are needed for Mozart's effervescent Concertos. But, best of all, Carmignola has an elegant way of turning a phrase and a graceful manner of expressing the inner life of the music. With the skilled if not especially characterful il Quartettone led by Carlo de Martini, Carmignola turns in performances of Mozart Concertos which while they might not challenge the greatest recordings ever made, certainly do reconfirm the life enhancing – life affirming – qualities of the music.(James Leonard)
Perlman and Zuckerman are great violinists. Their rendition of the Mozart Sinfonia Concertante for Violin and Orchestra is magnificent. The Allegro Maestoso first movement is delightful and lively. The rest of the slower movements are graceful and charming. If you are a fan of Mozart, you will love this cd. Not like the Violin Concertos because the Concertante is more of a lighter and less "complex " work, but still a masterpiece. It is garuanteed to be of your liking.
Together with the Requiem, Mozart's C minor mass is one of the brilliant composer's great unfinished sacred works. The work combines monumental power, solemn spirituality and moving solo passages. This recording under the baton of Baroque and Classical expert Raymond Leppard has great expressive depth, and offers a truly legendary vocal ensemble featuring stars like Kiri Te Kanawa and Ileana Cotrubas.
OSLO KAMMERAKADEMI performs chamber music for winds with the historical Harmoniemusik instrumentation as a foundation. Founded by Artistic Director and oboist David Friedemann Strunck (solo oboe, Oslo Philharmonic), the ensemble has established itself as a leader in Europe, with critically acclaimed CD recordings and invitations to prestigious festivals including the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival.
Director David McVicar's original-period vision for this Mozartian gem allows its genius to speak for itself, offering a mesmerising, sensitive outstanding portrayal of Enlightenment-era fascination with the East that is both exquisitely acted and sung, featuring a Konstanze and a Belmonte sung with finesse and bravura and a sensationally voiced Osmin (The Guardian *****). Comic relief in Glyndebourne's brilliant production is provided by beautifully sung live-wire performances of Pedrillo and Blonde, and Robin Ticciati leads the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment through a restored, authentic rendition of the critical score with lovely fizz and poignant gravitas (The Independent).
When this staging was presented in 1992, in various theatres, Gardiner decided to be his own director because he didn't trust any available alternative to be faithful to Da Ponte's and Mozart's original. In the circumstances his was a sensible decision because his deeply discerning stage interpretation perfectly seconds his own musically perceptive reading. His keen understanding of what this endlessly fascinating work is about is made plain in his absorbing essay in the booklet.