Paolo Pandolfo is one of Europe's leading exponents of the viola da gamba. In 1979, after studies at the Rome Conservatory, he co-founded (with Rinaldo Alessandrini and Enrico Gatti) la Stravaganza. In 1981, he moved to Basel, Switzerland, where he began collaborating with gambist Jordi Savall and his ensemble Hespèrion XX. In 1989, Pandolfo was named professor of viola da gamba at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, one of the leading centers for training early music performers. Since 1992, he has directed the viol consort Ensemble di viole Labyrinto, with which he has toured internationally. Pandolfo's recordings of Bach's music for the gamba (in 2000 on Harmonia Mundi and again in 2010 on Glossa), and the cello suites performed on the gamba, have generated interest in the role of the instrument in Bach's era. Yet, Pandolfo is also excited about creating new music for the ancient instrument, as evidenced by the 2004 recording Travel Notes, which contains his own music and some by his brother, trumpeter Andrea Pandolfo.
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Chamber Music - Released January 1, 2005 | Glossa
Welcome to the mysterious world of Monsieur de Sainte-Colombe, the French Baroque composer who perfected the art of playing the viola da gamba and inspired a generation of virtuosos but left so little of his own music behind -- so much of it in a fragmentary and disorganized state that putting together a program requires not only a bravura technique, a rich tone, and a poetic soul, but a skillful application of musical intelligence. Fortunately, these are all qualities with which Paolo Pandolfo is generously endowed. On this Glossa disc of 28 pieces grouped by key into four suites, Pandolfo not only soars through Sainte-Colombe's most treacherous writing and plumbs the depths of his most expressive writing, but also successfully completes his incomplete continuo writing in a quarter of the works. Accompanied by the agile Thomas Boysen on either theorbo or Baroque guitar, Pandolfo's Sainte-Colombe disc nearly rivals the pioneering recordings of his teacher Jordi Savall from 30 years ago and sets the standard for Sainte-Colombe discs for years to come. Glossa's digital sound is clear, warm, close, and quite intimate. © TiVo