Author Topic: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!  (Read 18217 times)

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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #20 on: September 01, 2010, 12:49:28 AM »
This interesting disc, featuring Konstantin Lifschitz on the piano, came my way:



Most of the disc is taken up by Bach, but there are three Frescobaldi toccatas on it as well. This is the only disc I've seen which has Frescobaldi played on the piano.

The music is intriguing and appealing, though one gets a sense of meandering, of forms not quite settled. This appears to be characteristic of much early keyboard music, as if composers were still trying to figure out the rules for it.
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karlhenning

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2011, 05:38:06 AM »
[ ... ]

Vol. 4:  The Fiori Musicali or ‘musical flowers’ occupy a special place among his works. Published in 1635, they consist of three ‘organ Masses’. Designed for churches where there was an organ, but no choir, the organ would play the movements of the Mass in the form of toccatas, canzonas, recercars and so on, sometimes with plainchant provided by the priest.


The name of the composer was known to me when I was still knee-high to a merry grasshopper, yet I've hardly heard any of his music.  Thanks to mention of the Fiori musicali in the liner notes to Fretwork's account of Die Kunst der Fuge, though, I've taken a keen interest . . . and I pulled the trigger just last night on this recording.

Offline Jeffrey Smith

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2011, 07:08:38 PM »
Reading through some less than enthusiastic opinions on this thread--
will this be worth getting? (AmazonUS gives the release date as 9/27.)

karlhenning

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #23 on: September 28, 2011, 07:17:38 AM »
Still making my way through this box, but really digging it:



Funny thing is . . . I had pulled the trigger at Amazon on a recording of Fiori musicali by Roberto Loreggian. A few minutes later, poking around some more, I found this box (at a very attractive price), noted that Loreggian is one of the performers, and supposing that the Loreggian Fiori musicali was included in the box, canceled that and pulled the trigger on the 12-CD box.

I find, though, that the Fiori musicali included in the box are performed by Sergio Vartolo (Roberto Loreggian is represented in this box just by disc 12, the Canzoni alla francese).  And I feel that the Fiori musicali are a work I shall not mind having a second recording of . . . .

Antoine Marchand

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #24 on: September 28, 2011, 07:41:24 AM »
Still making my way through this box, but really digging it:



And I feel that the Fiori musicali are a work I shall not mind having a second recording of . . . .

Did you like Vartolo, Karl? Or do you think the music is not attractive enough to justify a second recording? I'm curious because the poor Vartolo is so frequently maltreated by critics that I'm totally happy when a new listener enjoys his interpretations. I also think very highly about his Monteverdi (Brilliant Classics) and his AoF (Naxos).  :)

karlhenning

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #25 on: September 28, 2011, 08:36:04 AM »
Did you like Vartolo, Karl? Or do you think the music is not attractive enough to justify a second recording?

I was unclear, Antoine. Yes, I do like Vartolo very well here; and I like the piece well enough to bring in a second recording (at the very least with this literature, of course, the organ and voicings will be different, e.g.).

Antoine Marchand

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #26 on: September 28, 2011, 09:20:13 AM »
I was unclear, Antoine. Yes, I do like Vartolo very well here; and I like the piece well enough to bring in a second recording (at the very least with this literature, of course, the organ and voicings will be different, e.g.).

Yes, I did read your post in the "listening thread". I liked the word you used there to define Vartolo's style: "archaic". That's exactly the feeling I get with Vartolo. Sometimes it's even a quite overwhelming feeling as when I compare his Monteverdi, say, with the same operas conducted by Jacobs.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #27 on: December 07, 2011, 12:41:23 PM »
Been listening to it the last couple of days. Not, it must be said, in the most positive of moods, but even allowing for that, I do find it difficult. Well no, wait, stop. In one sense it's not difficult at all, so what do I mean by that statement? Consider the harpsichord discs. I've had them tinkling away very nicely in the background, and very pleasant they are (which in itself is a bonus, as I'm not noted for my enjoyment of harpsichords - or organs for that matter). But I don't know how to listen to it. I can hear it, and say 'how nice' and carry on reading my book; but I can no more follow the musical plot than fly. Indeed, I can't even find a musical plot to follow, so lost am I. I suppose that matters ... does it? Would Frescobaldi be happy enough to have provided me with a pleasant soundscape to read in? Or would he have thrown his hands up in horror and called in the music police?

It took me some re-tuning, Alan. In ways in which (as a musician) I have been frankly surprised, the music operates in ways very different to (say) Bach, Scarlatti or Couperin.

I began with a few of days' graduaol absorption of the Fiori musicali; and then sort of "lived with" the toccatas for a week or two.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
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Elgarian

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #28 on: December 07, 2011, 01:26:25 PM »
I began with a few of days' graduaol absorption of the Fiori musicali; and then sort of "lived with" the toccatas for a week or two.

Ah, that's interesting. Maybe I should just carry on letting it tinkle away do you think, and not worry too much but just let it infiltrate gently? (Antoine made that specific recommendation, which I started with, but the same vague bafflement led me on, after that, to the harpsichord discs as a better bet because more obviously attractive - to me personally - as a sound.)
« Last Edit: December 07, 2011, 01:29:18 PM by Elgarian »

Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #29 on: December 07, 2011, 01:47:52 PM »
Ah, that's interesting. Maybe I should just carry on letting it tinkle away do you think, and not worry too much but just let it infiltrate gently? (Antoine made that specific recommendation, which I started with, but the same vague bafflement led me on, after that, to the harpsichord discs as a better bet because more obviously attractive - to me personally - as a sound.)
I wouldn't worry about it too much. Listen and learn more (in any way, shape or form) could be the way to go. You may find the third and fourth paragraph of this (http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/frescobaldi.php) helpful....
Be kind to your fellow posters!!

Elgarian

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #30 on: December 08, 2011, 01:23:16 AM »
I wouldn't worry about it too much. Listen and learn more (in any way, shape or form) could be the way to go. You may find the third and fourth paragraph of this (http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/frescobaldi.php) helpful....

Thanks for this. Indeed, I won't worry about it (at least, no more than I do about the other 5 million things about the universe that I find puzzling). But of course it's disconcerting to know that something is intensely structured, but to perceive it only as if it were random, harmonious doodling. I used to find the same with abstract painting until a few pennies started to drop.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #31 on: March 09, 2012, 06:34:57 AM »
Just a note that I am returning to immersion in The Box . . . one disc of toccatas has been in heavy rotation by me this week.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
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[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
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His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Gordo

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #32 on: January 05, 2013, 06:39:11 PM »
So there is still hope this will not end like my short-lived love affair with the Frescobaldi box set on Tactus, that turned rather stale quickly because Vartolo as a main contributor bored my mind stiff - plus his (short) contributions as a counter-tenor were downright SCARY! :o  ;)

Q

I like very much those interpretations by Vartolo (I purchased separately every Frescobaldi collection recorded by him), but I think those interpretations are a sort of acquired taste (slooooow and very deliberate tempi to start). That's the reason why I was quite puzzled when the complete set on Tactus was suddenly a very popular item here and why I'm not surprised at all by your statement quoted above.


« Last Edit: January 05, 2013, 06:45:57 PM by Gordon Shumway »
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Offline Que

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #33 on: January 06, 2013, 12:38:48 AM »
I like very much those interpretations by Vartolo (I purchased separately every Frescobaldi collection recorded by him), but I think those interpretations are a sort of acquired taste (slooooow and very deliberate tempi to start). That's the reason why I was quite puzzled when the complete set on Tactus was suddenly a very popular item here and why I'm not surprised at all by your statement quoted above.



Well, slooow and deliberate - there you have it.... ::) :-\

It has been quite a love-hate affair... :)
When purchasing I was doubtful since I encountered Vartolo before. But decided to go ahead anyway - I mean, I paid $12 for the set and I had very little Frescobaldi on the shelves.
Then what happened? I was initially pleasantly surprised. I can appreciate Sergio Vartolo's musical qualities and insights, really. My first impression was: if I like Vartolo, it must be in the early repertoire, like Frescobaldi. But then as listening into the set progressed the newfound love came to wear thin... I definitely prefer him on the harpsichord, he does that quite nicely - considering.. But him on the organ really does it - the parts by Francesco Tasini sounded like a breath of fresh air to me. Vartolo's singing voice is just scary, but I guess that's me. 8) The performances of the choral music are as slow and not impressive but OK, I guess.

All in all, I think that Vartolo('s Frescobaldi) is Old School. My mind can appreciate the intellectual effort and musical insights, but the heart remains cold.

I'm holding out until Ligia reissues Jean Marc Aymes's recordings as a complete set. And I will look around for individual organ and harpsichord recordings by others, because this set has not spoiled my taste for Frescobaldi, on the contrary! :)

Q
À chacun son goût.

Online Mandryka

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #34 on: January 06, 2013, 09:16:01 AM »
Where does Vartolo sing in Frescobaldi, Que?

« Last Edit: January 06, 2013, 09:18:51 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Que

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #35 on: January 06, 2013, 09:46:35 AM »
Where does Vartolo sing in Frescobaldi, Que?

In the setI pictured, but only a few times, and briefly.
I didn't know who it was because there was no singer mentioned, but premont suggested that it was probably Vartolo himself.

Q
À chacun son goût.

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #36 on: June 13, 2013, 10:11:58 AM »
I'm thinking of getting Blandine Verlet's Frescobaldi disc. Anyone heard it?
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Online Mandryka

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #37 on: June 13, 2013, 10:13:53 PM »
I'm thinking of getting Blandine Verlet's Frescobaldi disc. Anyone heard it?

If you do get it and it@s in digital form I hope you@ll share it. That and her French Suites are two records I'd love to hear, but the CD versions seem unobtainable.
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Sean

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #38 on: June 14, 2013, 01:27:17 AM »
Frescobaldi's works are distended and tangled but he has a modest voice.

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Frescobaldi, Girolamo - Italian Keyboard Pioneer!
« Reply #39 on: June 14, 2013, 06:40:53 AM »
If you do get it and it@s in digital form I hope you@ll share it. That and her French Suites are two records I'd love to hear, but the CD versions seem unobtainable.

Sorry, I just ordered it, but it's an LP (the original release on Telefunken).
formerly VELIMIR (before that, Spitvalve)

"Who knows not strict counterpoint, lives and dies an ignoramus" - CPE Bach

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