Saturday, April 4, 2015

Classical Music Vivaldi Playlist Spotify

Funky Vivaldi on Spotify

Here is an one hour playlist, with, what I consider, to be the finest and funkiest Vivaldi tracks I know… 

In 1705, Antonio Vivaldi published his opus one, twelve violin sonata’s of which the last, based on the Spanish “Folia” dance ensured him early fame. The recent L’arte dell’ arco recording has been on my Spotify playlist for weeks now, continuo playing is very fine and catching. 

I haven’t always been been that nice to the Holland Baroque Society. Although this group was explorative in their programming and did marvelous education projects, I never heard “the” definitive hardcore Baroque period recording, that really convinced me. Their Muffat and Telemann recording were nice, but in a highly competitive field not distinctive enough to ensure a place among the top Baroque period ensembles. Enter the Vivaldi recording of Vivaldi’s opus nine violin concerto’s with Rachel Podger. Everything falls into place here, the excursions to folk music, popmusic and jazz that this ensemble undertook pay off, without sounding forced, or Pluharesque post-modern. The first concerto is presented here as an example of imaginary and imaginative playing on this CD.

Old skool again with an early Emma Kirkby recording, the chamber cantata “Amor hai vinto”, that I first heard in my teens on the radio. Classical singing without the “super-soprano” sound of verismo opera singers. Later development in “historically informed” music scene include more drama in the vocal performances, as perhaps would have been the case with professional singers in those days. This Kirkby performance remind me of Nobel ladies, or perhaps rich daughters of a Venice merchant, who would by this music and perform it in a private setting.

An other milestone in the rediscovery of Baroque period singing was the arrival of Andreas Scholl, a countertenor, the replacement of the long gone “castrato” voice. His recording of Vivaldi’s setting of Psalm 126 became a “hit” about ten years ago, and the CD even made it to the pop charts.

As last, a surprise. Vivaldi wrote many opera’s and re-used his earlier work frequently. After the three-part overture of his opera “La Dorilla in Tempe” a familiar tune pops-up; it’s the four seasons Spring opening, but sung by a chorus… 

Hope you like this selection!

-Violin Sonata op 1 No. 12 in D minor "La Follia", RV 63 (1705)
L’arte dell’ arco

-Violin Concerto op 9 (la Cetra) No. 1 in C major, RV 181a (1727)
Rachel Podger, violin
Holland baroque society

-Chamber cantata “Amor hai vinto” * for soprano and continuo RV 651 (after 1726)
Emma Kirkby, soprano
The Academy of Ancient Music
Christopher Hogwood, conductor

-Psalm 126 “Nisi Dominus” RV 608 (Between 1713 and 1719)
Andreas Scholl, countertenor
Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, 
Paul Dyer, conductor

-La Dorilla in Tempe RV 709 (1726/34) - Overture and chorus (surprise, it’s from the 4 seasons!)
Ensemble Baroque de Nice
Choeur de l'Opéra de Nice
Gilbert Bezzina, conductor
(HTTP link)

* Translated text of “Amor hai vinto"

Love, you have won.
Here is my breast
by your beautiful arrow it has been pierced. 
Now who will sustain my abandoned soul from sadness?
I freeze in every vein,
I feel my blood draining from me,
and the sun only serves me in life,
sorrow, and pain.
With new shocks,
my heart palpitates.
Cruel Clori, how long must one
endure the harshness of your severity?

I am in the pain of pains
like a little boat
going along, like this and like that, colliding against the waves.
The sky is thundering and lightening, the sea is all in a tempest.
A port it does not see, nor a shore;
it doesn’t know where to land.

What a strange and confusing whirlwind of thoughts
agitate my mind;
now it is calm, now angry, and yet again, it stops;
now in stone; now in dust. Oh God! But of what
do you complain,
incredulous heart?
Perhaps you do not know (alas!) that in the breast of Clori
There is a port, a shore!

If, towards me, you turn around your demeanor, my treasured lover, I won’t feel tortured anymore, but turn to breathe again.
It doesn’t fear danger anymore

it doesn’t feel suffering and pain, the soul is serene and calm.

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