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Paisiello: Piano Concertos #2 & 4
Giovanni Paisiello, Francesco Nicolosi, Collegium Philharmonicum
Paisiello: Piano Concertos #2 & 4
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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Nice music from a forgotten master
R. Broadhead | Southwestern USA | 04/28/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Giovanni Paisiello (1741-1816) is hardly a household name in classical music. Yet this Italian composer from Naples was well known throughout Europe in his day and composed a number of lovely operas, symphonies, chamber pieces and piano concertos. He is perhaps best known for writing the first version of the Barber of Seville, which inspired Mozart to write Le Nozze de Figaro.

This CD contains recordings of his 2nd and 4th piano concertos, his Sinfonia d'Opera, and the overture from his opera Proserpine. The Sinfonia d'Opera is an enjoyable piece of music written solidly in the 18th century Neapolitan style. The overture to Proserpine is quiet a nice piece of music with lovely melodies and is curously written in 3 movements - Allegro spiritoso, Andante, and Allegro, much like a short symphony.

The two piano concertos are exceptional pieces of music and are quite different from the solidly Italian style of the overture and sinfonia. The concertos have extensive parts for piano but have more involvement of the orchestra than most piano concertos of Mozart, Beethoven, and others. The 2nd concerto is more contained and slower; the 4th concerto is more brisk and forceful throughout much of its extent. The music is ornate and intricate. Both concertos show Paisiello's role in music evolution and in places are very reminiscent of Beethoven's concertos (but written 20-30 years before the Beethoven), although the compositions are not quite as well developed as Beethoven's. Although the description enclosed with the CD is perhaps a bit jingoistic in proclaiming Paisiello as a "prophet of Beethoven" one can definitely see a musical style that must have influenced Beethoven greatly and which is very different from Paisiello's great contemporaries Mozart and Haydn.

The piano playing by Francesco Nicolosi is strong and clear. The Collegium Philarmonicum Chamber Orchestra of Naples does a fine job under the direction of Maestro Cappabianca.

This CD contains fine performances of some really nice music. It is a nice, inexpensive way to introduce oneself to the music of Giovanni Paisiello, a very fine composer who was eminent in his day but whom history has relegated to the shadows of Mozart, Beethoven and Haydn."
Classical concerto
Lee M. | Phoenix, Az | 02/25/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Beautifully played, not often heard. I will listen to this CD often, and am glad I tracked it down."