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American Record Guide: (07/2017) 
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Reviewer: Charles Brewer


This is a refreshing and eclectic collection of Italian baroque concertos and sinfonias. It includes some rarely recorded works, such as Arcangelo Corelli’s Sinfonia to Giovanni Lulier’s oratorio, Santa Beatrice d’Este in D minor, a model concerto grosso, and Giuseppe Tartini’s Violin Concerto in E (D51), where the middle movement is subtitled ‘Tortorella bacie’ (dove’s kisses). Woodwinds are also well represented by Albinoni’s Concerto in F for two oboes, Op.9:3, Vivaldi’s Bassoon Concerto in C (R 467), and Vivaldi’s Alla Rustica Concerto with the optional oboe and bassoon parts in the final movement. The bookends are Antonio Caldara’s Sinfonia in C for two oboes, two bassoons, two trumpets, timpani, violin solo, and strings, modeled on Vivaldi’s concertos for several soloists, which dates from after 1717 when Caldara began his employment as Vice Maestro di Cappella for Charles VI at Vienna, and Giuseppe Torelli’s Sinfonia in C (G 33) for four trumpets, trombone, timpani, 2 oboes, 2 bassoons, 2 violins, 2 cellos, and strings; both works are filled with extensive solo passages

and trumpet fanfares.


The Corelli Sinfonia has only appeared in complete box sets (M/A 1991 and N/D 2005). While there have been other complete collections of the Albinoni oboe concertos (N/D 2009 & S/O 2013), the baroque oboes on this new release can be by turns virtuosic, rustic, and lyrical. I know of only one earlier recording of the Torelli (M/J 1994), which is very good, but La Serenissima makes this piece of baroque bombast much more subtle. The soloists and ensemble are superb and Adrian Chandler is very effective both as leader and as soloist in the Tartini concerto. As has been noted in the earlier reviews for this group (such as their Vivaldi recordings, S/O 2005, M/J 2008, N/D 2011, and N/D 2013; or their concerto collections, M/J 2007: 216; M/J 2009: 196, and N/D 2012: 257), they play with precision and passion, both readily evident on this new release.

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