Richard Tognetti / Australian Chamber Orchestra

Vivaldi: The 4 Seasons

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AllMusic Review by

The world was hardly clamoring for another recording of Vivaldi's Four Seasons violin concertos, but the Australian Chamber Orchestra has evolved into one of the world's top concert attractions, and it's natural that their fans would want to hear them in this ubiquitous work. Violin soloist Richard Tognetti plays a 1743 Guarneri instrument with a powerfully flashy tone, and he gets a large variety of sounds from it. These are complemented by the inclusion in the booklet of the four sonnets included by Vivaldi in the score (and possibly written by the composer himself). This is always desirable, for the Four Seasons are programmatic in a way that's hard to pick up from the music alone, and the inclusion of the texts is remarkably rare. Tognetti's performances lie somewhere in between the aggressive new Italian approaches and the classic silvery sound. He takes most of the music at a rapid clip, but the Australian Chamber Orchestra's smooth ensemble work is fully in evidence. A comfortable, contemporary Four Seasons that does not stray too far from the beaten path of the work's interpretive tradition.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
The Four Seasons, Op. 8
1 3:19
2 2:19
3 4:01
4 5:18
5 2:29
6 2:49
7 4:56
8 3:14
9 3:24
10 3:24
11 1:49
12 3:29
Concerto in D major, RV 226
13 1:39
Concerto in B minor, for 4 violins, cello, strings and basso continuo, RV 580 (No. 10 of L'estro armonico, Op. 3)
14 3:37
15 2:19
16 3:26
Concerto in A minor, for violin, strings and basso continuo, RV 356 (No. 6 of L'estro armonico, Op. 3)
17 2:54
18 2:12
19 2:26
Concerto in D major, RV 562 "Per la solennità di San Lorenzo"
20 3:19
La verità in cimento, RV 739
21 1:40
22 2:06
23 1:17
blue highlight denotes track pick