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GRAMOPHONE (02 /2014)
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Naïve
 OP30550



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Appréciation d'ensemble / Overall evaluation :

Reviewer: David Vickers
 

Founded in 2012 and named after Cesti’s opera for the wedding festivities of the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I in 1666, Il Pomo d’Oro’s two previous Vivaldi Edition contributions were volumes of violin concertos each respectively showcasing the founder-directors Riccardo Minasi and Dmitry Sinkovsky. Continuing the democratic scheme, both now appear together but take turns playing first fiddle in this collection of six double violin concertos (Vivaldi composed nearly 20).

 

These are live-wire performances that would make even the likes of Il Giardino Armonico blush (both soloists are alumni). The audible huff and puff that launches the closing Allegro of RV523, the full-blooded articulation from the small orchestra, virile sparring from the soloists and ringing continuo upon the final chord typify these high-voltage performances. Assertive dialogues between Minasi and Sinkovsky such as the cascading figurations in the first Allegro of RV515 are dazzling, and sparks fly in the quick movements of RV510. The central Largos convey expressive emotion, albeit a rawer kind of sentimental energy than the serene stillness one usually encounters in this repertoire. Over the course of six concertos it transpires that elegance and beauty are not priorities, and it’s fair to assess that this isn’t subtle Vivaldi-playing. The abrasiveness in the Allegro ma poco e cantabile that commences RV509 is neither in a singing manner nor merely ‘a bit’ allegro. Nevertheless, the unremitting aesthetic of ‘nature, red [Priest] in tooth and claw’ is often gripping.
 


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