Notes and Editorial Reviews
Between 1990 and 2000 Ilario Gregoletto recorded four CDs of harpsichord sonatas by Baldassare Galuppi (1706-85) for the small Italian label Rivoalto. Newton Classics now reissues the discs together as a budget-priced set. The booklet notes are not completely clear in regard to the sonatas’ numbering, apart from mention of cataloging systems by Hedda Illy and Fausto Torrefranca. In any event, all but one of these 25 sonatas follow a three-movement scheme, and each is marvelously varied in mood and texture.
Among memorable moments are the No. 2 first movement’s momentary major to minor key shifts, the No. 6 first movement’s asymmetrical phrase structure, the No. 14 Allegro finale’s bravura scales and broken octaves, and No.
16’s dramatic silences and petulant outbursts of chords. There’s a natural ebb and flow to Gregoletto’s agogic stresses and tempo fluctuations that prevents the composer’s frequent “sewing machine” Alberti basses from even the slightest lurching. Furthermore, his excellent legato technique imparts a genuinely vocal feeling to the melody lines; listen, for example to No. 9’s first-movement main theme with its premonitions of Mozart. Gregoletto’s tasteful changes of registration beautifully show off his instrument’s true colors (he plays a Malcolm Rose replica of a dual-manual Pierre Donzelague model), abetted by intimate, crystal-clear sonics. A most attractive release, highly recommended.
-- Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com
Works on This Recording
Keyboard Sonata in F minor [Illy No. 9] by Baldassare Galuppi
Ilario Gregoletto (Harpsichord)
Venue: Centro Studi Claviere, Vittorio Veneto,
Length: 10 Minutes 18 Secs.
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