Marriner: Vivaldi - The Four Seasons, L'Estro Armonico etc. (7 CD box set, FLAC)
Marriner: Vivaldi - The Four Seasons, L'Estro Armonico etc. (7 CD box set, FLAC)

Performer: Simon Preston, Christopher Hogwood, Colin Tilney
Orchestra: Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
Conductor: Neville Marriner, Iona Brown
Composer: Antonio Vivaldi
Audio CD
SPARS Code: ADD
Number of Discs: 7 CD box set
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Label: Decca
Size: 2.15 GB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

# The Four Seasons (Il quattro stagione), concertos (4) for violin, strings & continuo (“Il cimento” Nos. 1-4) , Op. 8/1 – 4
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Simon Preston, Alan Loveday
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# Concerto for violin, 2 oboes, 2 horns & bassoon, strings & continuo in F major, RV 569
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
with Robin Davis, Celia Nicklin, Martin Gatt, Kenneth Heath, Neil Black, Christopher Hogwood, Colin Tilney, Timothy Brown, Iona Brown

# Double Horn Concerto, for 2 horns, strings & continuo in F major, RV 539
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
with Robin Davis, Christopher Hogwood, Colin Tilney, Kenneth Heath, Timothy Brown

# L’estro armonico, concertos (12) for 1-4 solo instruments, strings & continuo, Op. 3
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Alan Loveday, Roy Gillard, Kenneth Heath, Carmel Kaine, Christopher Hogwood, Colin Tilney, Robert Spencer, Ronald Thomas, Iona Brown
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# Oboe Concerto, for oboe, strings & continuo in F major (authorship uncertain), RV 456
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Neil Black
Conducted by Neville Marriner

Also available:  Arturo Toscanini dirige Richard Wagner (APE)

# Bassoon Concerto, for bassoon, strings & continuo in A minor, RV 498
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Martin Gatt
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# Recorder (Flute) Concerto, for recorder or flute, strings & continuo in C minor, RV 441
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with William Bennett
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# Concerto for violin, 2 trombones da caccia, 2 oboes, bassoon, strings & continuo in F major, RV 574
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Robin Davis, Celia Nicklin, Martin Gatt, Neil Black, Timothy Brown, Iona Brown
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# La stravaganza, violin concertos (12) for violin, strings & continuo, Op. 4
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Alan Loveday, Carmel Kaine
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# La cetra, concertos (12) for one or two solo instruments, strings & continuo in two books, Op. 9
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Malcolm Latchem
Conducted by Iona Brown

# Double Oboe Concerto for 2 oboes (or recorders), strings & continuo in D minor, RV 535
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with Celia Nicklin, Neil Black
Conducted by Neville Marriner

# Piccolo (Flautino) Concerto, for piccolo (or recorder/flute), strings & continuo in C major, RV 443
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
Performed by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
with William Bennett
Conducted by Neville Marriner

One-stop Vivaldi shopping

Fifty dollars (35 with some dealers listed here) buys you an excellent seven disc collection of many of Vivaldi’s favorite concertos. The recordings were made in the 1960s but the sound quality is excellent. The performances are “old-school,” as someone would say, played on modern instruments and in a manner that doesn’t reflect the revised “correct” view of how these works should be performed. That means the sound is smooth and lovely and the playing is not manic and irritating. Personally I find these long highly-regarded recordings to be charming and filled with character and the performances flawless without sounding sterile at all. Maybe it’s not the way Vivaldi wanted them to sound but go ahead and prove that conclusively! I purchased this set not long ago and I have to admit that the magical recording of the Four Seasons contained within made me fall in love with the piece all over again–after ignoring it for nearly two decades. The rest of the set made me finally fall in love with Vivaldi’s music.

You’ll encounter a lot of strong opinions on this kind of stuff. I’m ignoring most of it and going where my heart takes me on music like this–I don’t want it to make me feel smug, I want it to make me smile.

Next stop, Munchinger’s Water Music and more of the extraordinary Bach Guild recordings which I cannot recommend enough.

6 Comments

  1. Whatever, I want to say a huge thank you for this set of piano sonatas and for all the great treasures of music you have kindly given. I had added so much music you have given us to my classical music library and so this is a huge thank you for all you efforts to bring these marvelous gems to the masses. Your work is unmatched.!! Simply Superb work!!

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