The music on this recording demonstrates how composers in Germany, Italy, Austria and England responded to the challenges of writing for violin senza basso. Music for violin senza basso had a distinguished history before Bach and was widely cultivated by his contemporaries. Violinistic virtuosity was extraordinarily experimental in the late seventeenth century, with novelties in the tuning of the strings (scordaura), bowing techniques, chordal playing and contrapuntal textures (with the development of sophisticated double-, triple- and quadruple-stopping techniques) and playing in high positions. This disc of solo violin music is a real mixture of some of Rachel’s favourite pieces.
L'estro armonico, the title of Vivaldi's first published collection of concertos, is commonly translated into English as "harmonic fancy." However, the word oestrus actually means "heat, stimulus, vehement impulse or frenzy" - a better allusion to the startling passion and energy of these twelve concertos, which are widely considered to be among the most influential Baroque orchestral music ever written. Following on their successful and widely acclaimed releases of Vivaldi's La Cetra and La Stravaganza, this release by Rachel Podger and her ensemble Brecon Baroque captures all of the vitality and freshness of Vivaldi's invention: its rhythmic energy, melodic and harmonic intensity, textural sensuousness, technical brilliance and dramatic flair.
We bundled the eight Mozart cd’s that Rachel Podger and Gary Cooper recorded over the last ten years into an atrractive box, with an informative note from producer Jonathan Freeman-Attwoord. The duo partnership Gary Cooper and Rachel Podger has taken them worldwide.
After recording Vivaldi's set of Violin Concertos 'La Stravaganza', Opus 4, in 2003, Rachel Podger has been immersed in music by Mozart and Bach on disc. But it has now felt right to come back to the Venetian Maestro, whose sense of drama she adores: “This time I chose his opus 9, the set of 12 Violin concertos entitled 'La Cetra'. There are plenty of jewels in this set, just as in 'La Stravaganza', with even higher technical demands made on the soloist including many, often exotic experimental effects.”