For his sixth album on Archiv Produktion/Deutsche Grammophon, Giuliano Carmignola continues to explore the virtuoso Italian violin repertoire of the 18th-century with selections by little-known contemporaries of Vivaldi. Three of the four concertos featured on this album are presented in world-premiere recordings; yet, this was no archaeological dig for Carmignola, rather he “was struck by the sheer quality of these works.” Andrea Marcon and the Venice Baroque Orchestra once again partner Carmignola for their fourth recording project together on Archiv Produktion.
Though all four composers presented on this album are not well-known, Antonio Lolli is perhaps the least obscure. Lolli’s concerto, his op. 2, was dedicated to the famous violin virtuoso Chevalier de Saint-Georges. The 19th-century music critic Eduard Hanslick called Lolli “the forerunner and prototype of Paganini and the spiritual father of all violin virtuosos.” Needless to say, Lolli’s work is filled with challenging virtuosic flights and daring technical hurdles – all of which Carmignola easily conquers.
The other three composers (Domenico Dall’Oglio, Michele Stratico and Pietro Nardini) are less well-known and their individual works are here recorded for the first time. In fact, all three works were discovered in manuscript form in Berkeley at the University of California Music Library . Each composer was certainly influenced by Vivaldi and Tartini and they even worked alongside these better-known masters at various times. Like Vivaldi, each composer places great demands on the technical skill of both the soloist and orchestra.
Carmignola and Marcon have lovingly rescued these works from obscurity and shed light on the musical scene in Italy during the 18th-century. Many composers in addition to Vivaldi, Tartini and Locatelli were successfully composing and expanding the technical and musical possibilities for the violin during this time as this recording demonstrates.
Giuliano Carmignola was born in Treviso , where his violinist father discovered and encouraged his son’s passion for music and where the Vivaldi renaissance began 50 years ago. Luigi Ferro, his first teacher at the Venice Conservatory, was a soloist with the Scuola Veneziana Orchestra that Angelo Ephrikian created in 1947 to perform Vivaldi’s music. Since his 2005 debut on Archiv Produktion, Carmignola has gone on to release a total of six albums.