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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons

Antonio Vivaldi , Francesco Geminiani , Martin Pearlman , Boston Baroque , Christina Day Martinson Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 14.98 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Orchestra: Boston Baroque
  • Conductor: Martin Pearlman
  • Composer: Antonio Vivaldi, Francesco Geminiani
  • Audio CD (19 Dec 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Telarc Classical
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 516,713 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Allegro
2. Largo
3. Allegro, Danza Pastorale
4. Allegro Non Molto
5. Adagio
6. Presto, Tempo Impetuoso D'estate
7. Allegro, Ballo E Canto De'villanell
8. Adagio, Ubriachi Dormienti
9. Allegro, La Caccia
10. Allegro Non Molto
11. Largo
12. Allegro
13. Adagio
14. Allegro
15. Vivace
16. Adagio
17. Allegro
18. Variations On La Follia, Concerto Grosso No. 12 in D Minor

Product Description

CD Description

The talented young soloist Christina Day Martinson is a native of Saskatchewan, Canada, and twice a National Finalist and prize-winner in the Canadian Music Competition. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory, holds a diploma from the Royal Conservatory in the Netherlands, and earned a Master of Music degree in historical performance from Boston University. It was at the Boston University School of Music that Ms. Day Martinson made the decision to concentrate on period violin and baroque performance. She studied performance practice with Martin Pearlman, who became her mentor and provided her first professional opportunities on period violin.

Telarc's premier ensemble, Boston Baroque, has enjoyed international critical and popular success with releases such as Bach's Brandenburg Concertos and Orchestral suites, Handel's Concerti Grossi Op. 6, Water Music and Royal Fireworks Music, and choral recordings including Handel's Messiah, Bach's Mass in B Minor, Mozart's Requiem and Monteverdi's Vespro della Beata Virgine.

Martin Pearlman is among this country's leading interpreters of baroque and classical music on both period and modern instruments. Pearlman has been acclaimed for more than thirty years in the orchestral, choral, and operatic repertoire from Monteverdi to Beethoven.

The celebrated "Four Seasons" are the first four of a set of twelve concertos which Vivaldi composed with the overall title Il cimento dell'armonia e dell'inventione ("The contest between harmony and invention"), Op. 8. The title is also being made available in the SACD format.

Christina Day Martinson (baroque violin), Boston Baroque, Martin Pearlman (conductor)

Product Description

Vivaldi,A. ~ Four Seasons

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A new look at an old favourite; and more... 7 April 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Yes, I know, yet another Four Seasons; but this one is something else again. Performed on original instruments and informed by performance scholarship, this performance is something to treasure. Quite beautifully played, judicious tempi, and featuring a wonderful soloist, it's something of a triumph. The Geminiani isn't bad, either. As the Gramophone's review (May 2009) said, this version of an old old warhorse could be the best of all worlds. Buy with confidence.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely the best Four Seasons I've heard 26 April 2009
By E. Davis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I didn't think that I (or anyone else) really needed another Four Seasons. Someone told me that there were more than 150 versions. This is pretty amazing considering that the first recording was only in 1942 and not really known here until about 1948. My favorites have been the English Concert and the recording by Monica Huggett and the Raglan Players. These are both outstanding period instruments recordings and are easy recommendations. I gave a very favorable review to a recording by Sarah Chang on modern instruments. I was pleasantly surprised by that one. This recording by Pearlman's Boston Baroque goes immediately to the top of the list for many reasons. It is a splendidly nuanced performance with very tasteful ornamentation and virtuoso playing (but never splashy or tasteless). Some may find the sound of this recording a bit thin, but these are period instruments and they can have a somewhat astringent sound. I think it is appropriate to the music. The Boston Baroque is in fine form here. They never try to overwhelm the listener (as does Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante in their tasteless and vulgar recording). There are enough dynamic contrasts to suit most listeners and there is the extra treat of the two Geminiani concerti grosso, the second being the famous La Follia variations based on Corelli's op. 5.

The notes by Pearlman are first rate and include the original program notes by Vivaldi (in Italian and English translation). For those who do not know what this means, the Four Seasons (the first four concerti of Vivaldi's Op. 8) is a very early example of programmatic music, in that it tells a story and the music represents the story. The only gripe is the incredibly small font used, so, unless you have great eyesight, get out your magnifying glass as I had to do. But don't pass up this recording. It is really a gem!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Critical Acclaim for this new Four Seasons performance 5 Aug 2011
By Phil in Magnolia - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
There are so many performances of the Four Seasons available on CD that I suppose each new performer is compelled to do something new or different in order to bring attention to their own particular interpretation.

This performance by the Boston Baroque has been designed to be more in line with period practices than other recordings by competitive groups that have been released in recent years. It has received glowing reviews by many professional reviewers and was nominated for a Grammy award, so the critics have spoken, and they are stating very clearly that this is a standout work.

It was for all of those reasons that I decided to add it to my collection, even though I already have four or five other Four Season's CD's. I love this music, and was curious and decided to give this one a try.

I am not a classical music expert, simply a person who enjoys fine music. I continue to build my collection and my experience with all of the works that I have gathered together. With the Four Seasons, my preference is for what would probably be termed a "traditional" performance, and having listened to my favorite Four Seasons CD (Viktoria Mullova, Chamber Orchestra of Europe - see Vivaldi: Le Quattro Stagioni (The Four Seasons)) for so many times, it has become in my own mind the standard that I automatically reference when listening to any other performance.

There are differences in this performance, in what I would describe as timing, or pace, or emphasis, that just slightly differ from what I find most enjoyable. There are also sequences in this recording that are superb. The quality of play is very high, the sound quality of the recording is also excellent. It is not the Four Seasons I would select for my only example, if I had to choose one, but it would probably make the top two or three.

If you are looking for something different, or to add some variety in your Four Seasons, then this is well worth considering. As I've mentioned, the experts (and I don't claim to be one of them!) give this the highest possible reviews, and it is quite good.

(8/14/11: I have revised my rating from three to four stars, and updated my comments, based upon further listening to the recording).
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