Concerto Italiano / Rinaldo Alessandrini

Monteverdi: Night. Stories of Lovers and Warriors

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A major figure in the transition between the Renaissance and the Baroque era, Claudio Monteverdi composed in both the polyphonic prima pratica, as represented by some of his sacred music, and the seconda pratica that he introduced in his operas and madrigals. These works were vehicles for expressing strong emotions through a variety of innovative methods, such as dramatic recitatives, vivid instrumental effects, plangent cross relations and other dissonances, and the juxtapostion of sections of contrasting keys and moods. This 2017 release on Naïve by Rinaldo Alessandrini and Concerto Italiano presents selections from the eight books of Madrigals, including the dramatic cantata Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda, as well as excerpts from Scherzi Musicali and the operas La favola d'Orfeo and Il Ritorno d'Ulisse in Patria. Alessandrini and his musicians give their performances a feeling of spontaneity and freedom, and the liveliness of the singing emphasizes the theatricality that was essential to Monteverdi's secular works. Naïve's reproduction is conventional stereo, though the warmth, depth, and vibrancy of the sound is close to audiophile quality, and the performers have remarkable presence in the digital recording.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Orfeo, venezia, 1609
1 1:50
2 5:28
Madrigali guerrieri, et amorosi, venezia, 1638
3 5:00
4 0:43
5 23:02
Madrigali libro terzo, venezia, 1592
6 1:23
7 2:49
8 2:30
Il ritorno d'ulisse in patria, venezia, 1641
9 0:46
Lamento della ninfa, madrigali guerrieri, et amorosi, venezia, 1638
10 1:30
Madrigali guerrieri, et amorosi, venezia, 1638
11 2:56
12 0:43
13 5:11
Il ritorno d'ulisse in patria, venezia, 1641
14 0:32
15 4:23
Concerto settimo libro de' madrigali, venezia, 1619
16 1:06
17 2:48
18 5:34
blue highlight denotes track pick