Renato Fasano

Vivaldi: The Concerto Album

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Playing a free-association game with the name Vivaldi is likely to produce two immediate results. The first, obviously, would likely be The Four Seasons. The second might be Stravinsky's familiar jibe that Vivaldi simply wrote the same concerto 500 times. In an effort to appease those who are rightfully enamored with The Four Seasons as well as to dispel the misconception of monotony or redundancy in Vivaldi's compositions, EMI has released this three-disc set of Vivaldi concertos. It includes the famous four concertos of Op. 8 (and the little-heard fifth concerto of this opus) as well as the magnificent set of 12 concertos of Op. 3, known as L'estro armonico. This latter set demonstrates beyond any doubt that Vivaldi was in fact an innovator and explorer when it came to the development of the concerto form. Performed by the Virtuosi di Roma -- an ensemble dedicated primarily to the works of Vivaldi -- and soloist Renato Fasano, the three-disc set offers a solid, reliable reading of these concertos. Sound quality is typical of an experienced Baroque-period chamber ensemble; intonation is spot-on throughout. There's a little taste of musical blandness at times, with many of the tempo choices being notably slower than might be expected. All around, though, this set is a good choice as a broader, thorough introduction to Vivaldi's works.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
The Four Seasons (Il quattro stagione), concertos (4) for violin, strings & continuo ("Il cimento" Nos. 1-4) , Op. 8/1 - 4
1
3:17
2
2:45
3
4:16
4
5:41
5
2:19
6
3:10
7
4:45
8
2:25
9
3:35
10
3:46
11
2:19
12
3:14
Work(s)
13
2:50 Amazon
14
2:50 Amazon
15
2:14 Amazon
Flute Concerto, for flute, strings & continuo in D major ("Il gardellino"), Op. 10/3, RV 428
16
3:58 Amazon
17
3:02
18
3:56 Amazon
Violin Concerto, for violin, strings & continuo in E flat major ("La tempesta di mare"; "Il cimento" No. 5), Op.8/5, RV 253
19
3:01
20
3:04
21
3:49

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
L' estro armonico, concertos (12) for 1-4 solo instruments, strings & continuo, Op. 3
1
5:08
2
2:42
3
1:03
4
1:24
5
3:52
6
4:29
7
3:42
8
2:08
9
4:29
10
2:27
11
3:53
12
1:30
13
1:46
14
3:25
15
5:13
16
4:06
17
2:45
18
3:33
19
4:51
20
2:42
blue highlight denotes track pick