Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 04/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This collection of Italian Cello Sonatas by the great Janos Starker is one of the most delightful chamber albums I own. The world renowned cellist was joined on this 1966 recording by pianist Stephen Swedish on five of the selections, and by his frequent collaborator Gyorgy Sebok on the Bach Sonata in G minor, which was recorded in 1963 and added to this collection to increase its length (it is a welcome addition musically too). The selections here range from famous composers like Bach, Boccherini and Vivaldi, to the lesser known Corelli, Locatelli and Valentini. For me, the common thread of this recording is the passionate performances of Starker. Whether it is the happy bounce of the Vivaldi Allegro, the sublime rendering of the Boccherini Adagio, or the precise interplay with Sebok on the Bach Sonata, Starker plays masterfully and his cello is captured in rich, full sound by the Mercury Living Presence recording technique. This is an excellent purchase for all cello enthusiasts."
David Emberson | Santa Cruz, California | 10/05/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a fabulous recording! The music and musicianship are superb. The Vivaldi is soulful and the Locatelli and Valentini sonatas are virtuoso pieces wonderfully played. The third Bach sonata was placed on this CD because it did not fit on the Mercury set with the Bach suites. It is a bit of a change of pace (certainly not an Italian cello sonata!). But Sebok is perhaps the best of Starker's collaborators. Their lifelong friendship and shared musical tastes make this one of the best recordings of this Bach sonata. You have to own this CD if you already own the Mercury edition of the Bach solo suites with the other two Bach sonatas.
I am not sure what the "one star" reviewer was thinking. Perhaps he was expecting Baroque a la Jacqueline DuPre..."