Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

REVIEW
RECORDING OF THE MONTH



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

alternatively
CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS
Sound Samples & Downloads

Il Concerto delle Viole Barberini
Girolamo FRESCOBALDI (1583-1643)
Messa della Domenica:
Toccata avanti la Messa [1:09]
Canzon dopo l'Epistola [2:15]
Messa dello Apostoli:
Toccata avanti la Messa [1:42]
Messa della Domenica:
Recercar dopo il Credo [1:53]
Toccata cromatica per l'Elevatione [3:31]
Domenico MAZZOCCHI (1592-1665)
Oh se poteste mai, luci adorate* [5:18]
Chiudesti i lumi, Armida [2:17]
Giovanni Pierluigi DA PALESTRINA (c1525-1594)
Ricercar del primo tono a 4 [2:04]
Ricercar del quarto tono a 4 [2:18]
Cherubino WAESICH (fl 1630)
Canzona XVI a 5 [3:09]
Canzona III a 5 [3:02]
Ardo per voi, mia vita (Madrigale a sei concertato con l'istromenti)* [2:50]
Canzona V a 5 [3:43]
Giovanni Girolamo KAPSBERGER (c1580-1651)
Ballo IV [4:42]
Girolamo FRESCOBALDI
Canzona a 4 sopra la Romanesca [2:48]
Canzona a 5 sopra Rugier [1:59]
Cherubino WAESICH
Canzon I a 5 [3:26]
Canzona XII a 5 [4:09]
O rubella amor (Madrigale a sei concertato con l'istromenti)* [2:46]
Domenico SCARLATTI (1685-1757)
Sonata in b minor (K 87) [4:28]
Ensemble Mare Nostrum, Vox Luminis*/Andrea De Carlo
rec. January 2011, Église Saint-Jean l'Évangeliste, Beufays, Belgium. DDD
Texts and translations included
RICERCAR RIC 320 [59:33]

Experience Classicsonline


Music for a consort of viols is mostly associated with England. That was already the case in the early 17th century. In 1639 the French cleric Abbé Maugars published a book on the music scene in Italy. When he visited Rome he was suprised by the almost complete absence of gambists, and he emphasized the strong contrast with England, which he had visited shortly before. As late as the the early 18th century the viola da gamba was still linked with England. When Vivaldi composed parts for gambas in some of his works he referred to them as viole all'inglese.
 
This disc sheds light on an aspect of Italian music of the early 17th century which is largely ignored. Despite Maugars' observations the viola da gamba was played in Rome. The title of this disc refers to Cardinal Francesco Barberini, a nephew of Pope Urban VIII. In his capacity as Papal secretary he undertook various diplomatic missions to foreign countries. The presence of an ensemble of gambas in his entourage is well documented. The cardinal's maestro di cappella, Virginio Mazzocchi, purchased several collections of music which were suitable to be played by a consort of viols. His brother Domenico dedicated a collection of madrigals to the Cardinal, and he specifically refers to the viol consort. He included parts for viols, but left it to the taste of the performers to sing the madrigals a cappella or with instruments. In this recording Oh se poteste mai is performed with voices and instruments, whereas Chiudeste i lumi, Armida is performed instrumentally.
 
Francesco Barberini wasn't the only aristocrat in Rome who had a viol consort. His brother Antonio, also a Cardinal, owned an ensemble of six viols himself. Some composers used viols in their vocal works, such as Marco Marazzoli. An interesting figure is Cherubino Waesich, probably of Flemish or German origin. He published the only collection of music for viols which has survived from this time in Rome, the Canzoni a cinque of 1632. It includes 16 canzonas for viols and two madrigals for voices with a consort of viols. Their technical level indicates that they were intended for professional players. In the two madrigals the gambas don't just play colla voce, but have independent parts and play sometimes without the voices in the ritornelli.
 
Waesich added to the title of his collection da sonarsi con le viole da gamba, indicating that these pieces were specifically intended for a consort of viols. The other music on this disc was either written for organ or for an instrumental ensemble without further specification. The former is the case with the five pieces from the collection Fiori Musicali by Girolamo Frescobaldi which open this disc. The viol consort is best suited to play polyphonic music in which all parts are treated equally. That explains that it played only a marginal role in the early 17th century in Italy, with its prominence of virtuosic music in the monodic style. In keyboard music counterpoint still played a major role, and that is certainly the case with Frescobaldi's oeuvre. These five organ pieces, intended for the liturgy and taken from two of Frescobaldi's organ masses, work pretty well in a performance with a viol consort. The two ricercares by Palestrina are also intended for the organ. They are two of eight ricercares in the various modes, the only instrumental music from Palestrina's pen.
 
The two canzonas by Frescobaldi and the Ballo IV by Kapsberger are written for instruments the choice of which is left to the performer. The former's canzonas are from a collection which appeared in Rome in 1628. Both are based on a basso ostinato, a practice which was very popular at the time. Giovanni Girolamo Kapsberger, of German birth, was the most celebrated theorbo player of his time and moved among the highest circles in Rome. He almost exclusively composed music for his own instrument. Only two collections of instrumental pieces in four parts are known from him. The Ballo IV is from the collection Libro primo di Balli, Gagliarde et Correnti of 1615. This ballo comprises four movements: Uscita, Ballo, Gagliarda and Corrente

As a kind of encore the disc ends with a keyboard sonata by Domenico Scarlatti. It has nothing to do with the viol consort of Francesco Barberini. In Scarlatti's time the viol consort had sunk into oblivion. The performers just want to show that some keyboard music, because of its polyphonic character, is suitable for a consort of viols to play. We are inclined to think that Scarlatti's sonatas are virtuosic showpieces, and many of them are. However his corpus of keyboard music also contains some more introverted sonatas which are sometimes played at the organ. These can also be played by an instrumental ensemble. The Sonata in b minor (K 87) is a wonderful example. It has no tempo indication but its character suggests an andante, and that is how it is played here. It is a beautuful ending of an intensely interesting disc.
 
I assume that the music by Waesich and probably also the pieces by Mazzocchi have been recorded here for the very first time. The interest lies not only in their scoring but also in the quality of the music. Mazzocchi was one of the main composers of his time in Rome. Recently I reviewed his opera La Catena d'Adone and the pieces on this disc confirm his stature. The music of Waesich - who is not mentioned in New Grove - is also of high quality and I would like to hear more from him. The playing of the Ensemble Mare Nostrum is superb throughout. It produces a beautiful and warm sound, with great transparency. The perfect phrasing and articulation and the subtle dynamic shading make this music really breathe. Vox Luminis sing only three items, and they do so in a very expressive manner. The blending of the voices and the viols is immaculate.
 
In short, a superb recording.
 
Johan van Veen
http://www.musica-dei-donum.org
https://twitter.com/johanvanveen
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.