Vivaldi's many cello concertos are performed here with consummate taste and superb musicality by Roel Dieltiens and the Ensemble Explorations. Dieltiens plays with a rich tone and a light touch and his robust virtuosity and enthusiastic sympathy for the music are irresistible. The seven members of the Ensemble Explorations – five strings plus lute or guitar and organ or harpsichord – play with a sense of cooperation, which leaves this music sounding as concertos from the period should, which is to say more like chamber music. Harmonia Mundi's sound is cool and clear, yet deep and full. Though fans of modern cellos and modern performance practices might prefer more romantic interpretations, anyone with an interest in period instruments and period performance practice will want to hear these recordings.(James Leonard)
The acclaimed Polish period band Arte dei Suonatori perform eight of Vivaldi’s concertos a Quattro. Their version of Handel’s 12 Concerto grossi Op. 6 was awarded ‘Orchestral Choice of the Month’ in BBC Music Magazine, alongside further critical acclaim from the international music press. As well as being a major composer in the formation of the solo concerto, he also was the leading exponent of the older concerto a quattro – music in four parts, with several players to a part. His works in this genre are notable not only for their beauty, but also for their experimental character and for providing the most important examples of fugal writing in Vivaldi’s instrumental music.
This six-CD box set brings together four major concerto sets composed including the most famous Il Cimento dell'Armonia e l'Invenzione awarded pride of place.
The eminently reliable Academy of Ancient Music play their period instruments with consummate zest under their charismatic conductor Christopher Hogwood and these sets date back to the early digital cum late analogue days when the fabled 'L'Oiseau-Lyre' label still produced those lavishly packaged boxes with their distinctive white covers and the wonderful paintings.
The concertos featured on this CD were discovered under the most unusual cir-cumstances. In 1926, the Salesian fathers, who ran a Piedmontese boarding school, inquired at the National Library in Turin about the value of a manuscript collection they owned...