The Art of Vivaldi’s Lute

The Art of Vivaldi’s Lute


Artists: The Bach Sinfonia, Dan Abraham, (director), Ronn McFarlane (lute)

Composers: Antonio Vivaldi

Format: 1 CD


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One of the United States best period instrument ensembles teams up with one of the world's best lutenists to perform the music of one of the most beloved composers of all time for this exciting new release from Sono Luminus. The Bach Sinfonia, under the direction Daniel Abraham performs the lute works of Vivaldi with GRAMMY®-nominated lutenist Ronn McFarlane delivering one of the years most exciting concerto albums. 

The Baroque concerto owes much of its development and advancement to Vivaldi. At the essence of the genre’s structure is idea of the ritornello. In the Baroque concerto, these reoccurring statements each alternate with modulating episodes with freer character in which the soloist(s) dominate the overall texture. Treatment of the ritornello within the works varies greatly among composers: whereas Bach and other Germans often integrated the ideas of the refrain, either complete or in part, as accompaniment to the episodes, Vivaldi relies heavily on exploring only specific ideas of the complete refrain and regularly ignores or alters other elements of the ritornello during repetitions. In addition, Vivaldi’s works advance the standard Italianate concerto scheme of three movements in a fast-slow-fast pattern. 

The Bach Sinfonia is dedicated to excellence in performance, public education and disseminating a greater understanding of the variety of styles, composers, and masterpieces of the baroque, pre-classical, and classical periods. Specialists in the performance of music of the 17th and 18th centuries, the ensemble presents concerts, lectures, and other cultural events designed to be not only entertainment but also an educational experience. Their performances and recordings have received outstanding reviews and international recognition. 

The work of conductor Daniel Abraham has garnered praise from many noteworthy sources including The Washington Post, Choral Journal, the BBC and Early Music America. Abraham’s performances have been nationally broadcast on National Public Radio’s Performance Today, he has appeared at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Concert Hall of the Music Center at Strathmore, The National Women’s Museum of the Arts, and has prepared choruses for the national broadcasts of the Kennedy Center Honors Gala (PBS) and Christmas in Washington (TNT). Abraham is associate professor of music and director of choral activities at American University in Washington, D.C., and is a sought after clinician who has given master classes and clinics throughout the United States, Canada, and as far as Cairo, Egypt. 

Ronn McFarlane, lutenist, is one of the most outstanding lutenists performing today and is largely responsible for bringing the transcendent charm and timeless quality of the lute into the musical mainstream and making it accessible to a larger audience. McFarlane has numerous recordings on the Dorian and then Sono Luminus labels including solo recordings, lute song recordings, over ten CDs with the Baltimore Consort and ballad recordings with Custer LaRue and members of The Baltimore Consort. In 2009, his CD Indigo Road, released with Sono Luminus, was nominated for a GRAMMY® award. 

Along with the beautiful lute works featuring McFarlane, the album enjoys a beautiful vocal performance from soprano Jennifer Ellis Kampani as the featured soloist for In Turbato mare irato.

Track List

Sinfonia in D minor
1. Allegro
2. Largo
3. Allegro

Concerto in D Major
4. Allegro giusto
5. Largo
6. Allegro

Trio in G minor
7. Andante molto
8. Larghetto
9. Allegro

In Turbato mare irato
10. Aria-Allergro
11. Recitativo
12. Aria – Larghetto
13. Alleluia

Trio in C Major
14. Allegro non molto
15. Larghetto
16. Allegro

Concerto in D minor for Lute and Viola d’amore
17. Allegro
18. Largo
19. Allegro

Sinfonia in G minor
20. Allegro
21. Largo
22. Allegro

Total time: 67:37
Release date: May 2011
UPC: 053479213228

Ronn McFarlane’s lute is ever present in this varied and pleasurable program...
— Donald Rosenberg, Gramophone

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