Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Giovanni Battista Viotti, Franco Mezzena, Viotti Chamber Orchestra|
Giovanni Battista Viotti: Concertos Nos. 8, 11 & 12 for Violin & Orchestra - Viotti Chamber Orchestra
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ONLY GOOD FOR COMPARISON PURPOSES
Gary | 07/19/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Although Viotti, a contemporary of Mozart, was once renowned for his violin compositions, the only ones that have remained of note are the concertos #16 and #22. The first caught the attention of Mozart, who added trombones and timpani to the orchestration. The second probably had a great influence on Brahms' own violin concerto. Thus, this recording is a rarity, consisting of concertos, 8, 11, and 12. Now, having said this, I'm not suggesting that these are great concertos by any stretch of the imagination. For one thing, this music isn't very melodious. Sophistication-wise, it falls somewhere between Haydn and Mozart; even then, Haydn is more imaginative. On top of this not so brilliant music, we have the not so brilliant violinist, Franco Mezzena. The liner-note says that he studied under Accardo. But then again, Accardo is just a good violinist, short of brilliant, too in my opinion. At best, Mezzena's playing is as good as that of a concert master--and a second rate one, at that. Most child prodigies play better than he does; this is not difficult music. Like what the title says, this recording is only good for comparing with other compositions of the classical period--not much worth beyond that. To be generous, I could only bring myself to give this recording at the most, three stars--if it weren't for its rareness."
An unjustly neglected classical composer
B. Knoll | University Park, PA United States | 08/13/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I had heard Viotti's third violin concerto many years ago, and had since searched fruitlessly for recordings of his other concerti. The lack of recordings of Viotti's music is, in my opinion, a pity, to say the least. Dynamic deserves praise for their issue of a complete set of Viotti's violin concerti. His music is melodious, gentle and refined. Viotti is most appropriately compared with other composers of the "classical" era, a period we are generally familiar with through music of Mozart and Haydn. Viotti's music is perhaps closest in tone to that of Haydn, but without the intensity of Haydn's Sturm and Drang works. Though Viotti does not reach the heights of emotional expression sometimes found in Mozart, I often find his music more approachable. Where Mozart is dramatic, Viotti is elegant. The recorded sound on all the Dynamic Viotti discs is excellent and the playing is first rate. Mezzena achieves a quality that perfectly fits the character of Viotti's composition. I highly recommend any of the Viotti concerti found in Dynamic's series."