With these words ("Great virtuoso of the violin, and our contemporary Orpheus"), Francesco Gasparini, writing in his 1708 figured bass tutor, succinctly described Arcangelo Corelli, one of the most revered and influential composers of the entire baroque era.
Arcangelo Corelli's remarkable reputation, established during his lifetime and maintained ever since, is based almost exclusively on his six published collections of works: the Trio Sonatas, Opp.1-4, the Concerti grossi, Op.6, and the twelve violin sonatas recorded here. Born in 1653 into a family of prosperous landowners, and trained as a violinist in Bologna, by his mid-twenties Corelli was in Rome and there rose rapidly to the peak of his profession. As both performer and composer he was renowned as a perfectionist, a fact reflected in both the size of his output and the polish with which it was prepared for publication.
Finnish Baroque Orchestra’s second release of Christoph Graupner’s (1683–1760) music continues to reveal delightful masterpieces by the Baroquemaster, who November 2014 during his lifetime was even more well known than his colleague Johann Sebastian Bach. After the acclaimed release of Graupner’s orchestral works (ODE12202; The Finnish broadcasting company YLE Record of the Year 2013), this new album focuses on some of the chamber works by Graupner – the Trio Sonatas. Graupner was extremely productive as a composer, with a catalogue of over 2’000 works varying from orchestral works to cantatas, concertos and chamber music. He also possessed a unique personal style of writing music and often favoured certain rarer instruments in his works. Among these are the viola d’amore as well as the chalumeau, both instruments being heard also on this disc. From his contemporaries Graupner’s music stands out with its exceptional command of melody and harmony.
The father of the Baroque period, Johann Sebastian Bach is one of the greatest composers of all time. His works, covering a wide range of instruments and voice types, continue to flourish to this day, forming a core part of musical learning. This special disc brings together the Trio Sonatas BWV525–530, works that originally appeared in a manuscript of works for organ. In this form, the pieces naturally became part of Bach’s teaching – a notable contribution to his oldest son Wilhelm Friedemann’s virtuoso organ technique.
Built in the 1760s, "Blue House" is one of the most beautiful palaces of Basel from the late Baroque period. The wealthy owner, Lucas Sarasin, was an avid amateur musician; he put on not only an instrument but also a music collection, of which over 1,300 titles are preserved in the University Library Basel. The Trio Sonatas for two violins and basso continuo take, with 214 titles, a special place and were probably acquired in order for Sarasin and its concertmaster could play together: works of the best contemporary composers, of which for this SACD the "Mannheim" Johann and Carl Stamitz and Anton Fils and the "Milan" Sammartini, Conti, Pugnani and J. Chr. Bach were chosen. The award-winning young ensemble "The musical garden" makes this music "between the Baroque and Classical" into an impressive experience.
At first glance, this looks like the concluding volume of a complete recording of Vivaldi’s Op. 1. But, as Michael Talbot points out in a characteristically interesting and informative note, the stronger works are concentrated within the second half of the set. Among them is the best known of the Trios from the collection, the 20 variations on the theme of Spanish origin, La follia. – Nicholas Anderson, Gramophone [5/1998].
'The most persuasive, vivid and compelling performances ever of these sonatas. Herrick's bubbly playing, not to mention Hyperion's superb recording, bring Bach vividly to life' (Gramophone)
…The double-CD set, which marks the last volume in Harmonia Mundi's effort to record all of Handel's opus-numbered publications, can nevertheless be strongly recommended.
Rarely do we feel the presence of Bach so vividly on a recording as we do here with this set of Trio Sonata arrangements, performed by violins, viola da gamba, and harpsichord. What a perfect combination, thanks to Richard Boothby's settings and to the wonderfully synergistic interaction among these very experienced early music players--violinists Catherine Mackintosh (in her best recorded performance in a while) and Catherine Weiss, gambist Boothby, and harpsichordist Robert Woolley. There's certainly nothing wrong with arranging Bach's music like this--and indeed, Boothby does "mix things up" by transposing keys and instrumental lines--as Bach himself reused, rearranged, and transposed his own and others' music. In these string versions of pieces normally performed on the organ we hear occasional enticing hints of the violin concertos and, because of the instruments' different registers and colors, the lines emerge in new and surprising ways. This disc makes a nice companion to Bernard Labadie's arrangement of the Goldberg Variations for strings and continuo, recorded with Les Violons du Roy on Dorian (see reviews and features): both are distinguished for their learned, totally faithful, yet refreshingly entertaining and enlightening recastings of music that's not only timeless but seemingly limitless in its revelatory capacity. The sound is demonstration quality--this is one of those recordings that when you turn it up to just the right level, the instruments come to stunningly real, three-dimensional life, no fancy surround-sound or other high end equipment needed.ClassicsToday - David Vernier