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Sammartini: Late Symphonies Vol 2 / Lurig, Accademia D'arcadia

Sammartini / Accademia D'arcadia / Lurig
Release Date: 05/04/2010 
Label:  Brilliant Classics   Catalog #: 94019  
Composer:  Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



G. B. SAMMARTINI Symphonies: in D, JC 11, JC 17; in E?, JC 26, JC 28; in G, JC 40 Alessandra Rossi Lürig, cond; Accademia d’Arcadia (period instruments) BRILLIANT 94019 (53:53)


Giovanni Battista Sammartini is generally credited as the “father of the symphony.” He was born in Milan in 1700 and remained there his entire life, dying in 1775. He wrote the Read more first symphonies that can be reliably dated (in 1732), basing his works on the concerto and trio sonata rather than the opera overture. Sixty-eight symphonies have been identified as genuine compositions, while an additional 74 of uncertain authorship have been attributed to him. His works have been divided into three periods. During the early period, he wrote 19 symphonies that display a mixture of Baroque and Classical tendencies. All of these symphonies are in three movements, fast-slow-fast, for strings. The 37 symphonies of the second period, from 1740 to 1758, are in the early Classical style. They require two horns or trumpets in addition to the strings. These symphonies end with minuets, some having trio sections, and there are some two-movement symphonies in the form fast-minuet. There are 12 symphonies in the late period, from 1759 to 1775. The works of this period are more complex; oboes are added to the texture and are given independent lines rather than merely doubling the strings; basses and cellos have independent parts, and violas are sometimes divided. These works are in three movements.


I did not have great hope for this recording when I received it. About 10 years ago I had acquired a complete set of the early symphonies on Nuova Era. I had listened to it once and did not remember it as being particularly interesting. But I could not have been more wrong. The works on this disc are thoroughly delightful and tuneful. The New Grove says these late symphonies have a “Mozartian flavor”; Mozart met Sammartini in Milan and admired his work.


The performances of Alessandra Rossi Lürig and her Accademia d’Arcadia are a large portion of the enjoyment this disc brings. Tempos are lively but not rushed. The orchestra plays with polish and enthusiasm.


My enjoyment of this disc led me to dig out the Nuova Era set of the early symphonies. I found I had been unduly harsh in my opinion of the music on that set; however, the works of Sammartini’s late period are more accomplished, and Accademia d’Arcadia is a much better ensemble than the student orchestra used by Nuova Era. The Nuova Era set is not currently in print but is deserving of reissue.


This disc is Volume 2 of a (presumably) three-volume presentation of the 12 late symphonies. I shall be acquiring Volume 1, which was not reviewed in Fanfare , and I look forward to the third volume in the series. Perhaps these forces will then give us an integral recording of the middle-period symphonies. But for now, we must be grateful for what we have, and I highly recommend this recording.


FANFARE: Ron Salemi
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Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony in D major, JC 11 by Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
2.
Symphony in E flat major, JC 28 by Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
3.
Symphony in D major, JC 17 by Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
4.
Symphony in G major, JC 40 by Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
5.
Sinfonia per camera in E flat major, JC 26 by Giovanni Battista Sammartini
Conductor:  Alessandra Rossi Lürig
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia D'Arcadia
Period: Classical 
Written: circa 1760-1770; Milan, Italy 

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