Daniel Hope – Violin
Simos Papanas - Violin
Nicola Mosca – Violoncello
Emanuele Forni - Luthe
Naoki Kitaya – Cembalo
Michael Metzler – Percussion
Diego Ortiz (1510-1570) - Ricercata segunda
Georg Friedrich Haendel (1685-1759) - Sarabande HWV 437 (arrangement Olivier Fourés)
Andrea Falconieri (1585/6–1656) - La suave melodia
Johann Paul von Westhoff (1656 -1705) - Imitazione delle campane
Nicola Matteis (1650-après 1713) - Diverse bizzarrie sopra la Veccia Sarabanda o pur Ciaccona
Antonio Vivaldi (1678 - 1741) - Sonate for 2 Violins: "La Follia" - watch video performance
Andrea Falconieri (1585/6–1656) - Passacaglia à 3
Johann Paul von Westhoff (1656-1705) - La guerra così nominata di sua maestà
Traditionnel - Greensleeves
Jean-Marie Leclair (1697–1764) - Le Tambourin
Marco Uccelini (1603 ou 1610 - 1680) - Aria Sopra la Bergamasca
Nicola Matteis (1650- après 1703) - Ground after the Scotch Humour
Johann Paul von Westhoff (1656-1705) - Imitazione del liuto
Andrea Falconieri (1585/6–1656) - Ciaccona
ENCORE: Bach "Air" (from Orchestral suite No. 3)
About the Program:
Nobody knows who invented the violin. Its magic is culturally omnipresent, from the simplest of Roma folk melodies to the most intricate sonatas of Bach.
While the origins of the violin can be traced back thousands of years to Mongolia and India, it was the Italians, and most importantly Andrea Amati in the mid-sixteenth century, to whom we can almost certainly attribute the creation of the violin in its modern form. The first known image of such an instrument is portrayed in the hands of cherubs in a Renaissance fresco, painted in 1530 by Gaudenzio Ferrari. But despite its angelic appearance, the violin was also referred to as the instrument of the devil, its curvaceous, feminine form and its voice admired and even lusted after: “stealing the hearts of men” with “a soul which makes it sing most like the human voice”.
From Amati’s creation, the long journey which the violin has taken to the present day has been an extraordinary and tempestuous one. Arguably its greatest development was during the baroque era, as violinists and composers, in a sense liberated from the austerity and contrapuntal strictures of the Renaissance, went on a journey, both musically and geographically, avidly seeking more extravagant and original ways in which to express themselves on this fascinating new instrument.
Air sets out to trace one such baroque journey. It is the story of four unique composers, three of whom were virtuoso violinists, one a lutenist - Falconiero, Matteis and Vivaldi from Italy, and Westhoff from Germany. They wandered throughout Europe during the 17th and 18th centuries in search of musical inspiration and cross-pollination, and their music and art of performance intrigued and delighted kings, contemporaries and audiences alike. As well as works by these four composers, this album also features some of the music of their time, in an attempt to show the cultural exchange which took place, much of it intuitively, between musical minds across borders. Some of these composers were influenced directly by what they heard, whether it was Geminiani by Händel, Bach by Westhoff or Matteis by the wealth of folk music he encountered on his travels to the British Isles.
With Air, my colleagues and I aim to reveal just how diverse the music of the baroque era was. While the music speaks eloquently for itself, I will serve as a sort of narrator or tour guide to help provide context, and illuminate just some of the many fascinating connections within the concert.
The program blends the simplest and at times most primitive forms of dance music with the most sophisticated and revolutionary compositions of the day, culminating in a work by Bach - the great master, whose title is my inspiration for this collection, and whose music remains for me today more modern than that of anyone else.