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Rinaldo Alessandrini: Chaconne
This unique recording re-introduces Rinaldo Alessandrini as a solo harpsichordist and reviews the concepts of chaconne and passacaglia in the most eclectic and captivating way.
This recording is the first album for years featuring Rinaldo Alessandrini as a harpsichordist and not as a conductor. This is a highly interesting recording presenting an eclectic programme that reviews the concepts of chaconne and passacaglia over music history, from Frescobaldi to Ligeti. On this album Rinaldo Alessandrini recorded a piece composed by himself - Déraisonnable beauté - alongside masterpieces of famous composers such as Handel, Couperin and Purcell. The chaconne and the passacaglia are dances based on the principle of repetition and variation, producing in the listener a kind of giddiness combined with a subtle hypnotic pleasure perfectly translated in this recording.
Rinaldo Alessandrini is not only a sought-after conductor but also a renowned recitalist on the harpsichord, fortepiano and organ, and he is considered one of the most authoritative interpreters of Monteverdi worldwide. His recordings include not only Italian music, but also Bach and his contemporaries and this new Chaconne release is a great example of such. Rinaldo Alessandrini has received many European awards for his recordings and his work with his Concerto Italiano.
“Alessandrini gets right down to business, opening with a bracing and full-bodied rendition of Frescobaldi's Partite cento sopra passacagli that vigorously plays up the music's audacious harmonies and energetic momentum...Alessandrini's original Chaconne simply flows from his beautifully reproduced instrument like cool oil.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2010
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Music for Viola da Gamba
Ralph Rousseau Meulenbroeks (viola da gamba) & Hein Van de Geyn (double bass)
Matangi String Quartet
This recording of 20th-century French popular music and 18th-century French baroque touches the very heart of what the viola da gamba is about, singing. This lyrical disc displays a wonderful melting pot of well known tunes from the early music repertoire with popular 20-century French chansons - from Marais and Bach to Ferrat and Brel - , performed by viola da gamba in the role of singer, and a string quintet in the role of orchestra.
Ralph Rousseau is a man of extremes. He loves Baroque music as well as hard rock. He rides to his performances clad in jeans and a leather jacket but takes the stage in eighteenth-century costume. He simultaneously studied physics and double bass, completing both cum laude. After, he earned his doctorate in physics but decided to devote himself to music. One can conclude two things from all this: First, if Ralph does something, he does it well; and second, Ralph Rousseau does things his own way, and with success. From 1996 onwards Ralph Rousseau Meulenbroeks has specialized in performing early music, studying viola da gamba with Jaap ter Linden. He is now an esteemed soloist, very often entirely solo, but also in chamber music settings or in orchestral works such as the Passions and cantatas of J.S. Bach. With the viola da gamba he has played for radio and television and he can be heard on several solo CDs, which have been highly acclaimed in the international press.
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