Sinn Yang / Duo ViA! / Herman Oehler

Vivaldi, Piazzolla: 8 Seasons

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Although the Piazzolla pieces were not intended as a set in the way Vivaldi's were, Piazzolla's Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas (Port City Four Seasons, the port city being Buenos Aires) tangos and Antonio Vivaldi's Four Seasons violin concertos have been paired several times on recordings. Usually Vivaldi's orchestral element has been dominant. This release by Korean violinist Sinn Yang and German accordionist Herman Oehler inclines in the other direction, with the accordion (not a bandoneón) in an equal role. In this regard it comes closer to the Piazzolla spirit than do the orchestral versions, and the violin through scratches and scrapes supplies quite a variety of orchestral effects. The most ingenious feature of the arrangements, though, comes in the Vivaldi, where Oehler achieves uncanny approximations of orchestral texture. In the famed central movement of the "Winter" concerto in the Four Seasons, one can almost forget this is just a violin and accordion. There is no compelling reason to play Vivaldi and Piazzolla this way, but the whole project has an attractive gee-whiz quality. An objection: the alternation of Piazzolla and Vivaldi is changed halfway through, apparently with the intention of framing the program with Piazzolla, but this has the effect of disturbing the rhythm of the whole. A pleasantly entertaining notion, executed with superb musicianship.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas
1 5:24
Die Vier Jahreszeiten
2 5:13
3 2:07
4 2:54
Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas
5 5:54
Die Vier Jahreszeiten
6 3:18
7 2:08
8 3:33
9 3:21
10 2:19
11 4:07
Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas
12 6:35
Die Vier Jahreszeiten
13 5:34
14 2:30
15 3:07
Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas
16 7:11
blue highlight denotes track pick