Notes and Editorial Reviews
The present release is an outstanding recording of Handel’s Concerti Grossi. Founded in 1959 by Neville Marriner and a group of London musicians, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields has long been one of the world’s leading chamber orchestras. Marriner, initially a violinist and professor of violin at the Royal College of Music in London, became a crucially important figure for the orchestra. In the 1960s, thanks to his vitality and insistence on crisp rhythms, the ASMF set the definitive style for the revival of “ancient music”. Since then its repertoire has expanded from the baroque to the 20th century, and with a discography of over 500 recordings the ensemble stands preeminent amongst the chamber orchestras of the world. After studying in Rome, Brussels and Vienna, and with Henryk Szeryng in Paris, Iona Brown pursued a successful career as a solo violinist before becoming artistic director of the ASMF in 1974. Her long-lasting collaboration with Neville Marriner had a decisive influence on the artistic profile of the chamber orchestra. She died of cancer in 2004.