Grandissima Gravita: Pisendel, Tartini, Verachini, Vivaldi | Channel Classics CCSSA39217

Grandissima Gravita: Pisendel, Tartini, Verachini, Vivaldi


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Label: Channel Classics

Cat No: CCSSA39217

Format: SACD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 22nd September 2017



Rachel Podger (violin)
Brecon Baroque


Pisendel, Johann Georg

Violin Sonata in C minor

Tartini, Giuseppe

Violin Sonatas (12), op.2
» no.5 in A minor

Veracini, Francesco

Sonate accademiche (12), op.2
» no.5 in G minor
» no.12 in D minor

Vivaldi, Antonio

Violin Sonatas (12), op.2
» Sonata no.2 in A major, RV31


Rachel Podger (violin)
Brecon Baroque


This CD brings together the compositions by four violinist-composers. United by a reverence for Arcangelo Corelli (1653-1713), and in particular his Opus 5, these works explore the imagination of form that was the Sonata for violin and continuo. Weaving together stylised dances and the preludic tradition, we are transported to a world of musical alchemy - the violinist creating ex nihilo textures and melodies that entrance and amaze.

“The four composers’ connections read like a popular comedy! Violin virtuosos Francesco Maria Verachini andJohann Georg Pisendel had an argument which resulted in Veracini flying into a rage and throwing himself from first floor a balcony, damaging his foot and limping forever after. Verachini amazed Giuseppe Tartini with his astonishingly smooth bowing technique, whereupon Tartini locked himself away to practice. Pisendel studied with Tartini and Antonio Vivaldi...” – Rachel Podger

“Rachel Podger, ever a glorious example of someone who lives life through her violin” – Gramophone


Podger, inevitably, is the star, but ultimately the disc's compulsive spell is down to the triumph of ensemble chemistry. Even the humblest of cello lines is elevated beyond functionality into something expressive and integral to the overall effect. Bewitching.  Paul Riley (Chamber Choice)
BBC Music Magazine December 2017
It’s not often worth devoting many words of a CD review to the contents of the CD’s booklet. However, what the Baroque violinist and musicologist Mark Seow has come up with for Rachel Podger and Brecon Baroque’s ‘Grandissima Gravita’ is nothing short of genius: a theatre script, the action of which sees the four violinist-composer stars of the album – Antonio Vivaldi, Giuseppe Tartini, Francesco Maria Veracini and Johann Georg Pisendel – reclining tipsily on divans in heaven (yes, really) for their annual wine-fuelled reunion. ... The performances themselves are as stunning as the notes are imaginative, all four musicians both completely under the music’s skin and under each other’s, and playing as a smoothly dovetailed unit. ... Programmed and presented with flair, and faultlessly performed, this is a listening experience of unbridled pleasure. An exceptional album.  Charlotte Gardner
Gramophone December 2017
Grandissima Gravita they’ve called it; Great Seriousness, and taking it very seriously here […] and there’s a lovely little encore tucked away.
Record Review (BBC Radio 3) 30 September 2017
Gramophone Editor's Choice

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