Dutch-born composer Johannes Schenck is another in a long line of Baroque composers whose works are only now being discovered and given their first modern performances. Thanks to the intrepid investigative work of harpsichordist Pieter Dirksen – a member of the ensemble La Suave Melodia heard here – a set of 12 trio sonatas of Schenck's Opus 3 that were thought to be lost have been unearthed.
This was the great collection of 12 varied and exciting violin concertos that turned Bach on to concerto writing. In fact, he transcribed several of these works for solo harpsichord, organ–even for harpsichords and orchestra. What fascinated him most was the balanced, three-movement form, the brilliance of the solo passages, the tunefulness of the music generally, and Vivaldi's seemingly inexhaustible storehouse of invention. When a composer ventured to publish a collection such as this, he was making a major statement. This is one of the really big ones in Baroque music, and it's performed with splendid authority and an unrivaled sense of sheer joy.–David Hurwitz
Antonio Vivaldi was one of the most successful composers of the Baroque era, best known for his iconic set concertos for violin, The Four Seasons. L’Estro Armonico Op.3 is among the most important printed editions of Vivaldi’s concertos; the works immediately met with great acclaim after their publication in 1711, giving way to over 30 reprints in the subsequent 32 years.
Best known for his huge output of concertos for the violin, Antonio Vivaldi produced a sizeable number of concertos for other instruments including the cello, an instrument that was little used as a soloist during Vivaldi's time. In all, there are 27 extant cello concertos that, like the violin concertos, push the instrument's technical and expressive abilities.