Recent recordings have given a lot of emphasis to Vivaldi’s music for the violin. In particular, The Four Seasons has seen a nearly unparalleled resurgence in popularity. This week let’s take a different route and explore Vivaldi’s compositions for the big brother of the wind section, the bassoon.
Naxos has released five volumes in their complete Vivaldi bassoon series, and we’re listening to music from the third. Bassoonist Tamás Benkócs performs on all five recordings with the Nicolaus Esterházy Sinfonia, conducted by Béla Drahos. Benkócs has established himself as a leading performer on the bassoon, being appointed principle cellist of the Budapest Festival Orchestra at the age of 20! He doesn’t fail to delight on these recordings either.
Our quick pick this week comes from the Franz Joseph Quartet. The ensemble performs the complete arrangement of Mozart’s operatic masterpiece Don Giovanni, as reduced for string quartet by Nicolaus Simrock in 1798.