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Bottesini: Capriccio Di Bravura / Stotijn, Thompson, Amsterdam Sinfonietta


Release Date: 05/08/2012 
Label:  Channel Classics   Catalog #: 32612  
Composer:  Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Christianne StotijnRick StotijnHans EijsackersLiza Ferschtman,   ... 
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  
SuperAudio CD:  $21.99
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Performance: 5 stars; Sonics: 5 stars – SACD.net

One might surmise that music by the 19th-century Italian double bass virtuoso Giovanni Bottesini would appeal only to those fancying the double bass, but the warm, autumnal tones of soloist Rick Stotijn and the eloquent, rich string ensemble make for a surprisingly delightful experience. The music, with its bel canto melodic style, flourishes, and ornaments, has the feel of Italian opera arias as well as a bit of Mendelssohn in one piece, and like many virtuoso showpieces of the time, it is pleasing if not profound. Nevertheless, there is something physically soothing about the overall sound of these musicians that makes for the aural equivalent of a box of really fine
Read more chocolates. As with the chocolates, the album is a guilty pleasure from first to last.

– Greg La Traille, ArkivMusic.com

Most Bottesini CDs are miserable: a hapless double bass player grinding away excruciatingly at what sounds like impossibly empty, virtuosic trash, usually accompanied by a second rate pianist or a third rate provincial orchestra. This disc could not be more different. Rick Stotijn is a first rate virtuoso, a real master of his instrument. Many of the works here are arrangements, granted, but they are invariably well made, respectful of the originals, superbly played by world class artists, and chosen so as to demonstrate that Bottesini was not an empty-headed noodler on his unwieldy instrument, but a musician of wide-ranging taste and genuine culture. For proof of this, look no farther than the Grande Allegro di Concerto “Alla Mendellsohn,” composed under the spell of the opening movement of Mendellsohn’s famous Violin Concerto, here effectively arranged for double bass and string quartet (sound clip below). Or consider the passionate song for mezzo soprano, double bass, and piano “Tutto che il mondo serra,” with its accompaniment drawn from a Chopin etude.

No, there is more to Bottesini than meets the eye, or ear. Other highlights from this delectably chosen program include the opening Grand Duo Concertante for Violin, Double Bass and String Orchestra (in this arrangement), with Liza Ferschtman joining Stotijn as a more than able partner; the Capriccio di Bravura for Double Bass and String Quintet, and finally the powerful and well-wrought Due Concertant with string orchestra on themes from Bellini’s “I Puritani” in which Stotijn teams up with cellist Monika Leskovor. Note that this is the only work on the program that falls into the operatic “greatest hits” class. In all of the orchestral works Candida Thompson leads the always splendid Amsterdam Sinfonietta and also takes lead violin in the works with chamber accompaniments. As usual with this label, the SACD surround sonics are outstanding, save perhaps in the two songs, where pianist Hans Eijsackers and Rick Stotijn tend to overpower Rick’s sister Christianne. Still, as a splendid recital and a revelatory portrait of a much-maligned composer, this disc stands in a class all its own.

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

1.
Une Bouche Aimée by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Christianne Stotijn (Mezzo Soprano), Rick Stotijn (Double Bass), Hans Eijsackers (Piano)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: 19th Century; Italy 
2.
Tutto che il mondo serra by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Rick Stotijn (Double Bass)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: 19th Century; Italy 
3.
Gran Duo for Clarinet, Double Bass and Orchestra by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Rick Stotijn (Double Bass), Liza Ferschtman (Violin)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1880; Italy 
4.
Duo concertant on themes from Bellini's "I Puritani" for Cello, Double Bass and Orchestra by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Rick Stotijn (Double Bass), Monika Leskovar (Cello)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: 19th Century; Italy 
5.
Grande Allegro di Concerto ‘alla Mendelssohn’ by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Rick Stotijn (Double Bass)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: Italy 
6.
Capiccio di Bravura in A major by Giovanni Bottesini
Performer:  Rick Stotijn (Double Bass)
Conductor:  Candida Thompson
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Sinfonietta
Period: Romantic 
Written: Italy 

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