Giuseppe & Giovanni Battista Sammartini: Concerti

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"We have an enjoyable disc of a range of music from two talented and influential brothers who inhabited a transitional period between baroque and early classical. Their career paths were quite different, Giovanni being born and then dying in Milan while Giuseppe eventually settled in bustling London for the last twenty or so years of his life. Giuseppe’s more cosmopolitan existence is reflected in his music on the disc which displays a pragmatic ability to adjust his style. The violoncello piccolo concerto, for example, is very italianate, clearly influenced by Vivaldi whereas his delightful oboe concerto, excellently played by Hans-Peter Westermann, is more Handelian in style. His recorder concerto is also very tuneful and is a standard repertoire piece for skilled players. Michael Schneider is a distinguished performer and I thought his playing one of the best things about the disc which otherwise contains renderings that are highly competent but not particularly special. He features also in Giuseppe’s Trio in F major for 2 recorders which for me was the most enjoyable work in spite of its three movements lasting little more than five minutes. The slow movement with the recorders’ clashing semi-tones and tones is exquisitely intense.

Giovanni died a quarter of a century after his brother and his two chamber works here (he does not get a concerto on this disc of "concertos"!) were probably written after his brother’s death and are understandably more classical in feel. Both involve transverse flute and I liked the spirited playing in works that I found neatly formed but relatively dull compared with brother Giuseppe’s contributions."

-- John Leeman, MusicWeb International reviewing DHM 77852

Product Description:

  • Catalog Number: DHM77323

  • UPC: 054727732324

  • Label: Deutsche Harmonia Mundi

  • Composer: Giovanni Battista Sammartini, Giuseppe Sammartini

  • Conductor: Michael Schneider

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Camerata Köln