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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'No greater happiness in this world', 12 Dec. 2012
This review is from: Stabat Mater (Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano) (Audio CD)
The comment of the 18th century Charles de Brosses (quoted in the title to this review) about Italian music in general could equally apply to this CD in particular. Utilizing a pared-down Concerto Italiano, with one instrument to each part, and directing from the organ, Rinaldo Alessandrini gives a sublime account of these two works, written for the Cavalieri della Vergine dei Dolori in Naples. Of the two, the Pergolesi is the more familiar. Often in other recordings given a casually jaunty performance, more operatic than ecclesiastical, here, thanks to well-chosen tempi and tight orchestral playing, it achieves an ideal balance between the contemplative and the uplifting. The effect is magical - as, too, is the performance of the Scarlatti setting, in many respects no less operatic than the Pergolesi, and equally rich in melody. Of course, much of the success of this CD is down to the two singers, the sublime Gemma Bertagnolli and the quite remarkable Sara Mingardo - listen to 'Fac ut portem Christi mortem' from the Pergolesi setting to marvel at her vocal range and extraordinary control. Impressive in the solo sections, they shine in the duets, where the tone of each voice complements the other quite brilliantly. All in all, then, in a crowded field, this CD is a very strong contender to become your recording of choice.
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Stabat Mater (Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano)
Stabat Mater (Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano) by Gemma Bertagnolli (Audio CD - 2005)
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