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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons, Violon Concertos [CD]

Elizabeth Blumenstock (violin) , Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra , Vivaldi , Nicholas McGegan Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 10.59 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Conductor: Nicholas McGegan
  • Composer: Vivaldi
  • Audio CD (3 Oct 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Philharmonia Baroque
  • ASIN: B005HO1WAG
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 285,526 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Concerto No. 1 in E Major, Op. 8, RV269, 'La Primavera'
2. Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, Op. 8, RV315, 'L'estate'
3. Concerto No. 3 in F Major, Op. 8, RV293, 'L'autunno'
4. Concerto No. 4 in F Minor, Op. 8, RV297, 'L'inverno'
5. Violin Concerto in B Flat Major, RV375
6. Violin Concerto in E Minor, RV277, Il Favorito
7. Violin Concerto in E Major, RV271, L'amoroso

Product Description

CD Description

Our familiarity with Vivaldi´s music makes it a particular challenge to any soloist not only to measure up to the virtuosity of past performers, but also to bring to the performance something new. In the case of Elizabeth Blumenstock and the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, that something new"" is actually something very old and precious in its authenticity and faithfulness-a performance that would, without doubt, have pleased the Red Priest mightily. RV271, L´amoroso and RV277, Il favorito were part of a set of six concertos Vivaldi gave to Emperor Charles VI, who rewarded him with lots of money, a knighthood, a gold medal and an invitation to come visit him in Vienna. And yet one cannot help feeling that these pieces weren´t actually written for the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire. The innocent tenderness and joy of L´amoroso and Il favorito, their distinctly feminine lyric sadness and longing, would point to the pieces first having been written for the girls and women of the Pietà. The rarely recorded concerto in B-flat major (RV375) is from Vivaldi´s late period. Complex and nuanced, the piece is filled with emotions that seem to belong more exclusively to the composer. While RV375 is recognisably the work of the same exuberant man who composed ""The Four Seasons,"" there is a morbid sense of foreboding in the music, especially in the first movement, and a tone of defiance throughout. Baroque violinist Elizabeth Blumenstock is widely admired as a performer of compelling verve and eloquence. She has played with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra since 1981 as a regular soloist, concertmaster, and leader. She is also a regular concertmaster with American Bach Soloists, the Göttingen Händelfestspiel Orchestra and the Italian ensemble Il Complesso Barocco. She plays a 1660 Andrea Guarneri violin on loan from the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra Period Instrument Trust.

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Why another Four Seasons? 28 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase
Quite simply, this is easily the freshest and most vibrant recording I have of this over exposed masterpiece, and full of original but sympathetic interpretation.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific New "Four Seasons" 12 Oct 2011
By John J. Puccio - Published on Amazon.com
I have to tell you, these Vivaldi Four Seasons interpretations sound more colorful and more imaginative than most I've heard. Indeed, they are some of the most vital, most vigorous, most forceful, most driving, most engaging renderings of the four concertos one could ask for. They are quite special.

So, just what makes McGegan's realizations any different from the 800 other versions you'll find on disc? Well, to begin with, these are not cushy, comfortable renditions, nor are they hell-bent-for-leather speed demons. In fact, McGegan generates fairly conventional tempos and sticks with the correct number of players indicated by the scores. No, the things that make McGegan's Vivaldi performances different and better than most others lie in his phrasing, his emphases, his attack, and his choice of dynamic contrasts. These are not timid readings but enthusiastically thrustful ones. If your idea of a great Four Seasons interpretation lies in its ability to make the listener actually hear and visualize the various times of the year, with all their attendant features, then McGegan's renditions with the Philharmonia Baroque are among the best-characterized ones currently before the public. You'll hear the yelping dogs, you'll feel the icy rain, and you'll be thoroughly entertained. If you're merely looking for another piece of Baroque background music to play at your next dinner party, forgetaboutit.

With all the talk about the works' graphic representations of the changes of the year, we tend sometimes to overlook the fact that each of The Four Seasons concertos is a three-movement piece for solo violin with orchestral accompaniment. In this regard, the various works not only set a pioneering standard for program music but for instrumental concertos as well. And each concerto provides Baroque violin soloist Elizabeth Blumenstock an opportunity to display her virtuosic technique. The whole set is a remarkable achievement on all counts.

This is not elevator Vivaldi or background Baroque. This is unique, colorful, fully researched Vivaldi from one of the world's finest period-instruments orchestras. It helps, too, that it is probably the best-recorded, best-sounding Vivaldi you can buy. Highly entertaining.

John J. Puccio
Classical Candor
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great sound: like you are sitting in the middle of the orchestra 26 May 2012
By Beverly - Published on Amazon.com
I have heard the Four Seasons a gazillion times, the four pieces are collectively such a chestnut, and I never thought I would want to listen to them again, but this performance was so fresh, the artists were so good, and the sound quality was so excellent it was like hearing them all for the first time. It was playing on my car radio, and I pulled over and parked the car so I would not miss a note. Five stars.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vivaldi presented at its BEST 30 Jun 2012
By John in SoCal - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
While I am not a big fan of Vivaldi, although I do have a few Vivaldi compositions in my classical collection of CDs (classical music makes up about half of my 1000+ disc CD collection that includes many genres of music). I have never been too excited, either, over classical music presented on period instruments --- the few CDs that I have where the music is on period instruments I have enjoyed much less, the sounds from them seem rather dull and oftentimes off-key, probably a condition from the period instruments themselves. This has caused me to avoid purchasing any period instrument classics.

But after reading a recent glowing review of this CD in one of the prominent audiophile magazines, I decided to give it a try. I can only say that the review was right on, this is a splendid CD, produced very well, the music played with a clarity I have not heard from any other Vivaldi, the skills of the musicians superb, and the detail from the period instruments sounds magnificent. If this CD does not get a listener interested in Vivaldi, or classical music, for that matter, no CD can. I know that this CD will be listened to often, it is that good. My recommendation is to anyone -- give this CD a try, put it into your player, turn up the volume, sit back and get comfortable in the sweet spot, prepare yourself for a real concert, and let yourself just get behind the sounds and wrapped into the musical presentation. This is classical music enjoyment at its best. It is how classical music on CDs should be recorded and produced.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vivaldi again? Get it anyway. 15 Feb 2013
By compost guy - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I really resisted buying this CD because I had several versions of the "Four Seasons". However, the review in Stereophile magazine convinced me to give it a try. I am so glad I did. To paraphrase their review, summer really sizzles, the ice of winter cracks and the violins manage to create the feeling of squeaking joints in the cold. The sonics are top-notch and the first violinist interprets the music better than anyone I have heard. The ensemble races right along with quick tempos, without sacrificing interpretation. Unless you are a dyed-in-the-wool Romantic, I guarantee you will thoroughly enjoy this recording.
2.0 out of 5 stars Terrible! 3 Jun 2014
By landshart2 - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I bought this based on the many reviews of so called aficionados of Vivaldi's work who said this was the truest to his original work... no interpretations and so on. These reviewers have tin ears or like the music of the one man band... the guy with the washboard, kazoo, symbols between his legs and drum on his back that drive us all crazy at carnivals and street fairs!

There is NONE of the rich fulness I have loved, but rather a quartet-like sound of out of tune instruments. Just terrible!!!
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