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Handel: Concerti Grossi Op 3, Etc / Egarr, Et Al


Release Date: 02/13/2007 
Label:  Harmonia Mundi   Catalog #: 907415   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  George Frideric HandelRichard Egarr
Performer:  Richard EgarrFrank De BruineLars HenrikssonRachel Brown,   ... 
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 8 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

A revitalised Academy bring fresh attention to Handel's charming music

"Handel’s Op 3 Concerti grossi was his first published set of concertos, although scholars have regarded the level of his personal involvement in John Walsh’s 1734 edition with suspicion. Richard Egarr, newly appointed music director of the Academy of Ancient Music, suggests that Handel might have had more of a hand in the compilation of Op 3 than hitherto identified. Fresh speculation is a healthy opportunity to reconsider matters but the truly significant aspect of this recording is the new attention brought to Handel’s charming music. It is hard to think of a lovelier moment in all of Handel’s orchestral works than the spellbinding cellos
Read more interweaving under a plaintive solo oboe in the Largo of No 2. Likewise, the immense personality of the solo organ runs during the finale of No 6 is a potently precocious display of Handel’s genius at the keyboard. All such moments come across with vitality and passion."

-- David Vickers, GRAMOPHONE

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As Richard Egarr points out in his very intelligent notes to this terrific release (in what promises to be a new Handel cycle with the AAM), the Op. 3 Concerti grossi tend to get dismissed as compared with their larger Op. 6 brethren. But that doesn't mean that Handel didn't lavish great care on their composition (or assembly), and the fact that they consist mostly of arrangements or borrowings, as we all know, means nothing where Handel is concerned as a measure of quality. One of the nicest things about these performances is that Egarr makes no effort to homogenize what remains a wildly varied selection of movement types and formal structures. Just the opposite: he presents this music as a riot of color and individualized character.

Here are some of the highlights: Egarr offers the solo flute version of the Third Concerto rather than the more standard alternative for oboe, an excellent choice that both sets off this particular work and provides a welcome contrasting timbre if you are listening continuously. The French Overture opening of Concerto No. 4 really captures that wonderful sense of ceremony that Handel managed better than just about anyone else. Egarr also offers a delightful organ improvisation as the central movement of the Sixth Concerto (surely something belongs between the two that Handel actually wrote), and throughout the set he varies the continuo extremely effectively, nowhere more so than in the strikingly sensual Largo of the Second Concerto. The lively Sonata a 5, from Handel's early days in Italy, makes a fine bonus, and the whole production is superbly engineered and presented with Harmonia Mundi's usual care for every detail of production. It doesn't get any better.

--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 1 in B flat major, HWV 312 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 8 Minutes 20 Secs. 
2.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 2 in B flat major, HWV 313 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord), Frank De Bruine (Oboe), Lars Henriksson (Oboe)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 11 Minutes 18 Secs. 
3.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 3 in G major, HWV 314 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord), Rachel Brown (Flute)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 8 Minutes 7 Secs. 
4.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 4b in F major, HWV 315 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 12 Minutes 55 Secs. 
5.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 5 in D minor, HWV 316 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 9 Minutes 40 Secs. 
6.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3: no 6 in D major/D minor, HWV 317 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Organ)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 6 Minutes 15 Secs. 
7.
Improvisation for Organ by Richard Egarr
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Organ)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2006; England 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St. John's Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 0 Secs. 
8.
Sonata à cinque for Violin and Strings in B flat major, HWV 288 by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Richard Egarr (Harpsichord), Pavlo Beznosiuk (Violin)
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1706-1707; Italy 
Date of Recording: 01/2006 
Venue:  St John's, Smith Square, London, England 
Length: 8 Minutes 56 Secs. 
9.
Concerti grossi (6), Op. 3/HWV 312-317 by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Richard Egarr
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715-1717; London, England 

Featured Sound Samples

Concerto grosso, op 3 no 5: IV. Allegro, ma non troppo

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