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Chamber Music - Released September 28, 2017 | Les Indispensables de Diapason


Violin Solos - Released September 8, 2017 | Ondine

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique
Of course, since years Bach’s Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin have been recorded over and over again, including by world’s best and most prestigious solists. But when violinist Christian Tetzlaff releases a brand new recording, we can only say: “Friends, countrymen, lend Qobuz your ears”. Concerts with Christian Tetzlaff often become an existential experience for interpreter and audience alike; old familiar works suddenly appear in an entirely new light, also – of course – within the frame of a new studio recording such as this one. Essential to Tetzlaff’s approach are the courage to take risks, technical brilliance, openness and alertness to life. Such an interpretation becomes a real challenge for the aficionado and guarantees a brilliant musical adventure.

Sacred Vocal Music - Released July 7, 2017 | Accent

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason

Classical - Released June 23, 2017 | deutsche harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique

Classical - Released June 2, 2017 | CPO

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason

Secular Vocal Music - Released May 31, 2017 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
The Carnival of Venice in 1729 was quite unlike any other. Over a period of two months, opera houses went into a frenzy of competition to show off the most famous singers of the day, including the legendary castrato Farinelli who made his astonishing Venetian debut. Several of the most fashionable composers rose to the occasion, writing ravishing music for spectacular productions which often pitted the singers against each other in breathtaking displays of virtuosity. The results were sensational; one tour de force followed another in an atmosphere of fevered excitement and the adoring public lapped it up. The carnival opened with a star-studded cast in Leonardo Leo’s tragedy Cantone in Utica from which the dazzling aria Soffre talor del vento and the more gentle Ombra adorata are taken. Farinelli triumphed in Nicolo Porpora’s opera Semiramide, the perfect vehicle for his extraordinary technique. By contrast Adelaide by Giuseppe Maria Orlandini, another premiere, contains show-stopping displays for Farinelli’s arch rival Faustina Bordoni. And Germiano Giacomelli’s elegant opera Gianguir contains the achingly beautiful aria Mi par sentir la bella. Most of these rediscovered works are recorded here for the first time. (c) Pentatone

Chamber Music - Released May 26, 2017 | Ricercar

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Joseph Bodin de Boismortier didn't exactly begin his career as a musician: in 1713 he was a receiver for the Royal Tobacco Office for soldiers in Roussillon. But, feeling drawn to music, he took a chance and sent a Parisian publisher several sheets of music. This proved to be a great success, which saw Boismortier leave Perpignan for Paris, where he would set up in 1723 as a composer and virtuoso. After that, he never ceased to produce and produce: to the extent that he was able to live from his music, without the need for aristocratic patronage. His first compositions, which were almost exclusively duets for transverse flute, show the deep attachment which he would always have to this instrument, which the French were said to play "with an unparalleled subtlety", according to a chronicler of their time. Averaging a rate of four collections a year from 1724 to 1747, he would eventually write 102 numbered works, within which he would combine, in all possible musical forms (solos, duets, trios, quartets, sonatas, suites and concertos), all the timbres which were then in vogue in the salons of the capital. Violins, flutes, cellos, violas de gamba, bassoons, oboes, accordions, hurdy gurdies, and harpsichords vied for his attentions, to the joy of enlightened music-lovers and their salons. It is clear that the years 1732 to 1736 marked the height of the artist's powers in relation to instrumental music (he would later turn to ballet, opera, cantata, motet, etc.). In this period a large number of collections were published, which included the trios recorded here, almost all inspired by the Italian Sonata da chiesa: slow-quick-slow-quick. The Petit Trianon, with Amandine Solano on violin, Olivier Riehl on flute, Cyril Poulet on cello, Xavier Marquis on bassoon and Paolo Corsi on harpsichord has interpreted these devilishly charming works, with an infectious cheer. © SM/Qobuz

Chamber Music - Released May 26, 2017 | Accent

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
The six sonatas by Jan Dismas Zelenka ZWV 181 are among the most noteworthy pieces of chamber music of their day and are some the most difficult works in the Baroque oboe and bassoon repertoire, while also being key works of Zelenka’s musical legacy. Nowadays, Zelenka, a Czech composer who spent most of his life in Dresden, no longer needs much introduction because he finally has a firmly established place among the greatest composers of the first half of the eighteenth century. That, however, has not always been the case. His nearly forgotten music did not attract wider attention until the latter half of the twentieth century, and it was these sonatas that played an important role in this. In Zelenka’s day, collections of trio sonatas were a traditional form of presentation of a certain maturity of compositional artistry, and as a matter of fact the composer was here entering the fourth decade of his life – recent musicological research has placed their composition around the years 1721 and 1722. His sonatas likewise are not early works dependent on models. Five of the six sonatas have a four-movement layout and other external features of a sonata da chiesa in the Corelli manner, but the Fifth Sonata has a three-movement structure, quick movements in ritornello form, and other features directly alluding to Antonio Vivaldi’s chamber concertos or to the special sonata of the “auf Concertenart” type. In the application of four- part writing “con due bassi obligati”, manifesting itself in the more or less independent bassoon part or in the abundant use of counterpoint, the sonatas are exceptionally long, so they make great demands on the technical skill and endurance of the players. Zelenka’s writing, however, takes the chosen instruments into consideration by employing suitable keys, keeping in mind the need for places to breathe, etc. Another striking feature is the enormous intensity of expression. Although the composer makes plentiful use of sophisticated contrapuntal techniques and forms for the construction of broadly striding themes and for the combination of the individual voices, this “learnedness” is never at the expense of musical spontaneity. The Czech early music ensemble Collegium 1704, founded 1991 by harpsichordist and horn player Václav Luks (was formerly horn soloist of the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, an excellent school for historically informed performance) plays on period instruments, as may be expected. © SM/Qobuz

Classical - Released May 19, 2017 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik
What was the context in which so great a masterpiece such as Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo could be born back in 1607, invested with such beauty, endowed with such profundity of expression and so perfect a structure, at a time when the operatic form was still in its infancy? These are precisely the questions that lie at the origin of this recording project, giving Pichon and his musicians the opportunity to discover the astonishing musico-dramatic productions that preceded L’Orfeo, notably those performed at the Medici court in Florence, in which one may discern the seeds of numerous elements to be found in L’Orfeo. At the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries, it was ovbviously the city of the Medici that was the main focus of one of the most fascinating moments in the history of music: the birth of opera. Concentrating on the years from 1589 to 1611, i.e. the premiere of the intermedi for theatre piece called La pellegrina at one end and the performance in Florence of Marco da Gagliano’s Dafne at the other, Pichon has devised four imaginary “interludes” – inspired by the form of the intermedio so popular at this period – in which he assembled some of the finest examples of the first stirrings of opera, the music pieces of which are signed Lorenzo Allegri, Antonio Brunelli, Giovanni Battista Buonamente, Giulio Caccini, Emilio de’ Cavalieri, Girolamo Fantini, Marco da Gagliano, Cristofano Malvezzi, Luca Marenzio, Alessandro Orologio, Jacopo Peri and Alessandro Striggio. In imitation of the ancient theatre, intermedi were entertainments inserted between the acts of plays, with sumptuous visual effects, which provided a pretext for allegories to the glory of the reigning dynasty. The place of music and the fantastic element in theatrical performances acquired an ever grander and more spectacular character, thanks notably to the genius of set designers and the progress made in the domain of stage machinery. Seeing the artistic and political potential of the genre, the powerful princely families of the northern half of Italy (Gonzagas, Este and Medici, as well as the papal court), encouraged its development. Intermedi ended up occupying so important a place that they became a show within the show, with the aim of dazzling the audience. It was in 1589 that the Florentine tradition of intermedi attained its zenith, with the six sumptuous entertainments devised by Count Bardi to accompany the comedy La pellegrina, performed on the occasion of the wedding of Grand Duke Ferdinando I and Princess Christina of Lorraine, grand-daughter of Catarina de’ Medici. In their variety and novelty, with a balanced combination of polyphony and the nascent monody, not forgetting instrumental and dance music, the intermedi of 1589 opened the way for an integrally sung form of theatre. And indeed it was once again Florence that witnessed the first examples of the Gesamtkunstwerk, the perfect model of the alliance between poetry and music. At the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries, a veritable laboratory was set up in Florence, prompting poets and composers to bring together several forms of musical expression in a single place? Building on the models established by earlier generations, composers continued their experiments with sound-space and the spatialisation of music, what with the proliferation of echo effects in the early monodies, or madrigals featuring dialogues between as many as seven independent choirs. But how can one tell this story nowadays, revive this rich adventure? The solution chosen for this recording was to create from scratch a large-scale imaginary work, resembling an initiatory journey, that would weld these multiple works into a single whole.

Chamber Music - Released May 12, 2017 | Ricercar

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
These Pièces de viole by Marin Marais first appeared in five volumes, dated 1686-9, 1701, 1711, 1717 and 1725 respectively. The small world of viol players was in full ferment when he published his first Livre: alongside this tradition of the solo viol there developed a highly original practice of two or three viols playing together. Furthermore, one of the great novelties of this volume is the addition of the continuo. However, the continuo part was not ready when the edition itself was published in 1686. We may therefore imagine that these pieces were also played without continuo, as is also the case with other pieces that still only exist in manuscript and that have no continuo line. We should, however, admit that the continuo adds considerable harmonic and expressive support to these pieces. The continuo part was not printed finally until 1689: ”When I gave the Public my Book of Pièces for one and two Viols, I intended to include the parts for bass continuo, for they are an essential part of it. Given, however, that music engraving is a very time-consuming enterprise, I was obliged to delay their appearance until today. I have figured them completely, so that they may be played on the Harpsichord or the Theorbo, two instruments that go very well with the solo Viol”.This Premier Livre contains 93 pieces grouped by key according to the lute and harpsichord traditions. The pieces were published following the order of the classic French Suite, i.e. Prelude and/or Fantasia, Allemande, Courante, Sarabande and Gigue, followed by the “petites danses”, Minuet, Gavotte, one or two Rondeaux and finally a Passacaglia or Chaconne. François Joubert-Caillet and his colleagues of the ensemble L'Achéron have chosen the instruments for the continuo group according to the moods and emotions of the various suites: the more intimate works use only a theorbo or a guitar, the more flowery works employ a theorbo and a guitar or archlute, while the radiant, virile and many-hued works have been allotted the harpsichord. Given the extreme length of the Suites in D minor, we have divided each of these into two suites so that they can be more easily appreciated. For the same reason, the order of the Suites on this recording does not follow the order of the 93 pieces in the Premier Livre; given that the volume was not compiled with the intention that it be either played or heard in order from start to finish, we have attempted to make the listener’sexperience as comfortable as possible with the use of contrasting colours and instrumentation.

Sacred Vocal Music - Released May 5, 2017 | Glossa

Hi-Res Booklet

Sacred Vocal Music - Released May 5, 2017 | Pan Classics

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason

Chamber Music - Released April 28, 2017 | Ambronay

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Exceptional Sound Productions

Chamber Music - Released April 28, 2017 | B Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
In putting together this programme, the ensemble L’Escadron Volant de la Reine (which takes its curious name from that of a group of ladies-in-waiting for Catherine de’ Medici) has taken Geminiani’s life itself as the main argument, from his youth in Italy to the end of his life in Dublin, with ample stopovers in Paris and London. When we examine our protagonist’s biography, we discover an eccentric, flamboyant character, just like his music. Il Furibondo, as his students used to call him – the Enraged or the Fulminating, some nickname indeed! – has never ceased to amaze. L’Escadron did not want to string together the usual and slightly pedestrian album offering five or six Concerti, but instead took a peek into the composer’s repertoire to build from scratch a framework with pieces in all the styles and genres which Geminiani explored: the Galant Style; the Dance; the Fugue; the traditional Irish song; the Aria; the Recitation; the Tempest; or the English-style Ground Bass... Some further composers appear in this musical biography: Haendel, whom Geminiani admired for his vocal works (hence an instrumental version of one of Haendel’s most famous arias, Lascia ; Avison, an English contemporary; and finally, Corelli, Il Furibondo’s own teacher. By turns, each member of the Escadron takes the floor as a soloist and puts forward his or her character to portray the different aspects of Geminiani’s fascinating life. © SM/Qobuz

Chamber Music - Released April 23, 2017 | Ricercar

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4 étoiles Classica