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Geminiani: Sonatas for Violoncello & Basso Continuo

Alison McGillivray

Geminiani: Sonatas for Violoncello & Basso Continuo

CKD 251 (Linn Records)
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Tracks: Listen and Download

Format
Track Time Listen
1
Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Andante

Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Andante

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
1:39 Play $1.70
2
Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:48 Play $1.70
3
Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Andante

Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Andante

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:49 Play $1.70
4
Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.1 in A - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
4:15 Play $1.70
5
Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Andante

Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Andante

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
2:39 Play $1.70
6
Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Presto

Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Presto

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
2:33 Play $1.70
7
Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Adagio

Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Adagio

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:57 Play $1.70
8
Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.2 in D minor - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
4:53 Play $1.70
9
Prelude (Lentement) after op.4 no.1, from Pièces de Clavecin (London 1743)

Prelude (Lentement) after op.4 no.1, from Pièces de Clavecin (London 1743)

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:25 Play $1.70
10
Vivement in D, after op.4 no.1, from Pièces de Clavecin (London 1743)

Vivement in D, after op.4 no.1, from Pièces de Clavecin (London 1743)

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
2:50 Play $1.70
11
Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Andante

Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Andante

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
1:42 Play $1.70
12
Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
4:17 Play $1.70
13
Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Affetuoso

Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Affetuoso

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:04 Play $1.70
14
Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.3 in C - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:09 Play $1.70
15
Tendrement in G minor, after op.1 no.6, from Pièces de Clavecin

Tendrement in G minor, after op.1 no.6, from Pièces de Clavecin

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:34 Play $1.70
16
Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Andante

Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Andante

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:25 Play $1.70
17
Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Allegro Moderato

Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Allegro Moderato

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:16 Play $1.70
18
Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Grave

Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Grave

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
1:02 Play $1.70
19
Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.4 in B flat - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:56 Play $1.70
20
Vivement in D minor, after op.4 no.4, from Pièces de Clavecin

Vivement in D minor, after op.4 no.4, from Pièces de Clavecin

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:50 Play $1.70
21
Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Adagio

Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Adagio

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:41 Play $1.70
22
Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Allegro Moderato

Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Allegro Moderato

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
1:23 Play $1.70
23
Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Adagio

Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Adagio

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
2:27 Play $1.70
24
Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Allegro

Sonata op.5 no.5 in F - Allegro

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
2:44 Play $1.70
25
Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:02 Play $1.70
26
Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:37 Play $1.70
27
Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Sonata after op.5 no.4 in B flat, from The Second Collection of Pieces for the Harpsichord (London 1762)

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
1:09 Play $1.70
28
Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
0:44 Play $1.70
29
Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
4:08 Play $1.70
30
Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Sonata op.5 no.6 in A minor

Composer Francesco Geminiani
Guest Artist David McGuinness - harpsichord, Eligio Quinteiro - baroque guitar, Joseph Crouch - baroque cello
3:57 Play $1.70
Total Running Time 74 minutes Purchase all tracks 
$13.00 
Prices shown in US Dollars

Debut solo album from cellist Alison McGillivray exploring the music of Francesco Geminiani. "This is a stellar release, full of discrete pleasures for the discerning listener." Classical Source

The SACD layer is both 5.1 channel and 2-channel. The Studio Master files are 96kHz / 24-bit.

Download includes - cover art, booklet

Produced by Philip Hobbs

Alison McGillivray – violoncello
David McGuinness – harpsichord
Eligio Quinteiro – baroque guitar
Joseph Crouch – violoncello

Recorded at St. Martin’s Church, East Woodhay, UK on August 10-13th 2004
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Edited by Julia Thomas
SACD mixes by Philip Hobbs & Julia Thomas
Post-Production at Finesplice, UK
Group Photos by Timothy Kraemer
Instrument photos by Clarissa Bruce Photo of Alison McGillivray by David McGuinness
This recording is dedicated to Jennifer Ward Clarke, with gratitude.

Francesco Geminiani arrived in London in 1714, the year after the death of Archangelo Corelli. He came with the pedigree of having studied with Alessandro Scarlatti and the great Corelli himself. As a prodigious violinist he had rapidly outgrown the teaching of his violinist father in his birth town of Lucca, and had moved on to Rome after learning in Milan with the violinist Lonati. He was a striking and captivating virtuoso, but as such found himself received with divided opinion. The frustration of being in a less than subtle musical environment must have prompted the radical move to London.

He spent the next 18 years in the city, publishing, teaching, and performing. Like his master, Corelli, Geminiani dedicated his compositional talents to instrumental music. Within two years of his coming to London he had published his Op 1 – a set of twelve Violin Sonatas. A further set of twelve, Op 4, was published in 1739. His particular love was for the concerto grosso form – one in which he could exploit his skills in imaginative orchestration and the weaving of musical textures, and which allowed him to flex his contrapuntal muscles. In total he published four sets of his own Concerti Grossi, but one of his better commercial successes was with the homage he paid to Corelli in reworking as concerti grossi the master’s Op 5 Violin Sonatas. At a stroke, this not only hugely advanced his name as a composer, but also made the music of Corelli available to a much broader range of musicians than before; ones who were in all likelihood unable to master the sonatas in their original form but were desperate to be part of the Corelli-fever.

The London of the beginning of the 18th century was one gripped by enthusiasm for all things Italian. Educated young men would come back from their travels on the ‘Grand Tour’ with their eyes widened by the riches of Italian art and architecture and their ears buzzing with the sounds of Rome and Venice. Italian opera was becoming highly fashionable – the young Georg Frederik Handel was gathering around him the best Italian singers and instrumentalists he could find to captivate his English audience. Geminiani’s circle would have naturally included these musicians – one such man was Pietro Castrucci, who arrived in town one year after Geminiani and was for many years the leader of Handel’s orchestra. Like Geminiani, he had been associated with Corelli in Rome. In 1720 Geminiani and Castrucci shared a publication (six each) of their flute sonatas. Between Handel himself and Geminiani, the best documented meeting is on the occasion of the violinist being granted his first royal audience with George 1st; Geminiani accepted on the condition that only Handel would be suitable to accompany him on the keyboard. The collaboration was a success and both men enjoyed the blessings of Royal favour.

In what seems to be a recurring theme for him, Geminiani gradually became disillusioned by the state of musical life in the place he was living and felt the need to seek fresh inspiration. He sought inspiration abroad in Holland, Paris and Dublin. The move to Dublin was perhaps prompted by one of his illustrious students, Matthew Dubourg, who had settled in the city in 1728, and conducted the orchestra in the Dublin première of Handel’s Messiah. In Dublin, Geminiani was also able to indulge his love of art by setting up a gallery and dealership, with concert rooms on the floor above. (He is said to have loved painting more than music, and was reported often to distract visitors who had come for musical reasons on to the subject of his collection, which reputedly included works by Correggio and Caravaggio).

The time he spent in Paris was divided between overseeing the publication of his works and participating in concerts given at the Concert Spirituel and the Societé Academique des Enfants d’Appolon. He would have been at the heart of cutting-edge Parisian performance, mingling with amongst others Jean-Phillipe Rameau, the great composer and innovator.

Geminiani’s Op 5 Violoncello Sonatas were first published in 1746 in Paris. Were these sonatas written with a particular performer in mind? If not, then certainly the burgeoning Parisian school of cello playing seems a likely inspiration. The long established French antipathy to Italian culture was, by the 1730s, waning. There were many Italian cellists performing in Paris, and many French viola da gamba players travelling to Italy to study the cello. Geminiani’s reworkings for solo harpsichord of movements from his Op 1, 4, and 5 sonatas give the greatest clue as to where his musical voice was heading. He had already in 1739 extensively revised and republished his Op 1 Violin Sonatas. The elaborations, ornamentations and explicit directions hi gives to the performer show how he hoped to guide the quixotic taste of the musical public. With the Pièces de Clavecin, he managed the remarkable transformation of turning his earlier Corelli-inspired sonata writing into French harpsichord music. These works were printed in 1743, with a later volume published in 1762 entitled The Second Collection of Pieces for Harpsichord. His Op 5 Cello Sonatas are an intriguing and delicately balanced fusion of Italianate clarity and counterpoint and French lavishness of sonority and gesture. The first movement of Op5 no.2 in particular seems born out of the great French viola da gamba repertoire. One difficulty in writing for the cello lies in working a convincing dialogue between melody and bass line, where the parts often share the same octave. Geminiani often lets the lines cross, allowing the strength of his counterpoint to carry the music forward. He revels in the sonority created by the two cellos; the middle section of the last movement of the opus seems a homage to the instrument itself.

The Op 5 Cello Sonatas are a work of genius. They come from the mind of a man who was meticulous in his craft and dedicated to his art, who’s imagination was indeed ‘warm and glowing’, and who even the age of 72, was admired for his “fine and elegant taste, and perfection of time and tune”.
Alison McGillivray

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The Strad
Alison McGillivray is an imaginative and stylish interpreter of Geminiani's six cello sonatas op. 5.
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The Financial Times
Awarded Best Classical CD of 2005
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Music-Web International
She offers sensitive, committed playing...
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The Whold Note (Toronto)
...richness in embellishment...
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Early Music Today
...superbly expressive and imaginative playing...
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International Record Review
I have enjoyed this CD very much, and shall return to it often.
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The Herald
5 Stars
...the disc, with its endless stream of stylish and imaginative performance strokes, is absolutely convincing.
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ClassicalSource.com
This is imaginative playing of the first rank.
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The Dominion Post (Wellington, NZ)
5 Stars
The sound is breathtakingly natural, making this a release that, while mandatory for baroque specialists, should be owned by all music lovers.
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Early Music Review
Alison and her trio of co-conspirators have that something special in buckets.
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The Daily Telegraph
Her warm, rich sound has a sunny autumnal maturity...
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The Times
The music swings from sighing movements to cheerful jigs.
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The Sunday Herald
Alive and stylish.
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MusicWeek
A recording full of "expressive and imaginative sounds"
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