DISCUSSION: Defining Our Field - what is 'classical music' to us, why are we involved and what can we learn from our differences? Read John Dante Prevedini's essay, watch the panel discussion and make your own comments.
Antonio Vivaldi was born in Venice on 4 March 1678 and died in Vienna on 28 July 1741. Son of a violinist, his prodigious output of attractive music made him a celebrity throughout Europe. Reputed to have written 94 operas, it is perhaps not a tragedy that we know less than fifty.
CD Spotlight. Much to Enjoy - Violin concertos by Vivaldi, Locatelli and Leclair senior delight Gerald Fenech. 'Théotime Langlois de Swarte despatches these pieces with glorious dexterity, and the freshness of his playing is so engaging that you never tire of listening.'
Ensemble. A Splendid Achievement - Fareed Curmally listens to the Chamber Orchestra of the Symphony Orchestra of India
CD Spotlight. Vibrantly Glowing Renditions - Virtuosic eighteenth century Italian violin concertos inspire Gerald Fenech. 'Čičić ... surmounts all the monstrous challenges with prodigious dexterity.'
Ensemble. Catching Up - Giuseppe Pennisi attends the final two concerts of the Musica d'Amare Festival in Rome
Ensemble. Three Divas - Maria Nockin reviews a streamed recital from Versailles, given by Ailyn Pérez, Nadine Sierra, Isabel Leonard, Vlad Iftinca and Pablo Sáinz-Villegas
CD Spotlight. Christmas Night - Seventeenth and eighteenth century Italian festive music, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'This is a compilation full of craft and ingenuity ...'
CD Spotlight. Love, Jealousy and Madness - Music inspired by Ariosto's poem 'Orlando Furioso', heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Filippo Mineccia sings with an exceptional timbre that is sensual and luminous, mixing virtuosity with sensitivity, while Pablo Garcia and his ensemble give sympathetic support with their insightful playing.'
Ensemble. Dancing Vivaldi during Social Distancing - Giuseppe Pennisi reports from Teatro dell'Opera di Roma's Circus Maximus
CD Spotlight. Full of Colours and Flavour - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music from Sharon Isbin and the Pacifica Quartet. '... an original program and excellent rendering make very pleasant listening.'
Portraits. Jakub Józef Orliński - Anett Fodor writes about the Polish counter tenor and his latest album
Ensemble. Pearls on the Thread of Recitative - David Mitchell reviews Pinchgut Opera's production of Vivaldi's 'Farnace'
CD Spotlight. Judged to Perfection - Baroque oboe sonatas played by Xenia Löffler, strongly recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... played very pleasingly with great style and panache by all instruments concerned.'
CD Spotlight. Fresh and Natural - Leila Schayegh plays Vivaldi's 'Four Seasons', heard by Gerald Fenech. '... she succeeds brilliantly with some magical playing full of "joie de vivre" and silhouetted tone painting.'
Microtonal Trills and Tremolos - Luca Luciano pushes the boundaries of clarinet playing, impressing Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Fully Engaged - Richard Dacey steps down from his post as musical director of Derby Choral Union with a concert of Mozart, Vivaldi and Beethoven, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A New Venture - Mike Wheeler listens to Brahms, Elgar, Haydn, Parry, Philip Moore, Purcell, Rutter, Stanford and Vivaldi from Derby Cathedral Choir
Ensemble. A Serious Miscalculation - Music for choir and saxophone, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Lively and Joyful - Vivaldi, J S Bach and Handel from The Sixteen, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Bartók Pizzicato Gun Shots - Vivaldi, Edgar Meyer and Beethoven from Joshua Bell and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields impress Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Vivaldi Reworkings - Passacaglia Baroque Ensemble, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Passacaglia delivers performances replete with polished precision and rhythmic verve while never neglecting to keep the music's breezy textures centre-stage.'
CD Spotlight. Immaculately Crazy - Red Priest's 'Baroque Bohemians' impresses Alice McVeigh. '... extreme alternations of mood, from manic charges to bucolic brusqueness, with serious offbeat percussive work ... and general anarchy ...'
Ensemble. Impressive Unanimity - London Concertante's first visit to Derby Cathedral disappoints Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Splice the Mainbrace - Red Priest's 'Pirates of the Baroque', heard by the late Howard Smith. 'The foursome are outrageous, hugely entertaining, and Red Priest take no prisoners.'
CD Spotlight. Innate Musicality - The Eight Seasons of Vivaldi and Piazzolla, recommended by Giuseppe Pennisi. '... Yury Revich is a superb soloist, a real virtuoso with tremendous imagination and a splendid use of his instrument.'
CD Spotlight. Vintage Handel - The pastiche 'Catone', recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Carlo Ipata and his masterful band of singers and instrumentalists give a most persuasive and fascinating performance capturing all the nuances of the score with impressive conviction and verbal dexterity.'
CD Spotlight. Performance Technique - Cameron Roberts' piano transcriptions, heard by the late Howard Smith. 'The novelty value of this crystal clear recording can hardly be denied.'
Ensemble. Sparkle and Brilliance - An exploration of the celebration and imitation of national styles, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Captivating Evening - Vivaldi's 'La Sena Festeggiante', reviewed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Consistently Vibrant - Music inspired by St Francis of Assisi, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'A heart-melting issue ...'
CD Spotlight. Consistently Inventive - Viola d'Amore concertos by Vivaldi, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Rachel Barton Pine gives committed performances full of virtuosic brilliance ...'
Ensemble. Woman for all Seasons - Gerald Fenech returns to Festival Maribor in Slovenia
Ensemble. Infectiously Enjoyable - Anniversaries at The VoiceBox in Derby, by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Assuredly Managed - Baroque premieres, heard by Howard Smith. '... Udagawa reveals its melodic character to the full.'
Ensemble. Not to be Missed - The French ensemble Les Paladins, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi
CD Spotlight. Particularly Enticing - Antonio Vivaldi flute concerti, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Steger is a likeable exponent ...'
CD Spotlight. Imaginative Programming - Zenia Löffler's Venetian concerti impress Geoff Pearce. 'This disc will not fail to please ...'
Ensemble. Bringing Together - Roderic Dunnett visits James MacMillan's Cumnock Tryst
Ensemble. Growing Together - Vorisek in the North Downs, heard by Keith Bramich
Ensemble. Highest Accolades - Gerald Fenech enjoys his visit to Festival Maribor in Slovenia
CD Spotlight. Crystalline Intensity - La Nuova Musica's Vivaldi and Handel impresses Howard Smith. '... recommendable for its baroque verisimilitude and clarity.'
Ensemble. Typically Convoluted - Mike Wheeler returns to Buxton for Vivaldi's 'Ottone in Villa'
The Life of Antonio Vivaldi - Susan Budig's short poem about Venice's 'Red Priest', composed in the form of a classical rondeau
Ensemble. Highly Appreciated - Music by Vivaldi in the churches of Rome, enjoyed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Sonorities of Great Beauty - Malcolm Miller listens to the mandolin
Ensemble. Full Rein - Derby Bach Choir sings Haydn, Vivaldi and Beethoven, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Neat and Stylish - Piers Adams plays Vivaldi and Handel, and impresses Robert Anderson. '... I would back Mr Adams against any of the elements.'
Ensemble. Sex and Bigotry - Giuseppe Pennisi reports on his week at the Rossini Opera Festival
Ensemble. Intensely Expressive - Italian baroque choral music, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Great Conviction - Mendelssohn, Mozart and Vivaldi from Derby Choral Union, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Esoteric Seasons - Forma Antiqva meets Vivaldi, heard by Howard Smith. '... an 'off-the-wall' take on Le quattro stagioni ...'
Ensemble. Wonderfully Unusual - Vivica Genaux and Europa Galante, heard by Maria Nockin
Ensemble. An Extraordinary Performance - 'The Enchanted Island' live in HD, reviewed by Maria Nockin
Ensemble. Great Success - Willian Christie's 'The Enchanted Island', reviewed by Gregory Moomjy
Ask Alice - Of telephones and concerts, plus a recording of Vivaldi's Four Seasons - Music and Sonnets, with Classical Music agony aunt Alice McVeigh
Ensemble. Songs of Exiles - The Canterbury Cellos, heard by Howard Smith
Ensemble. Santa Fe, The City Different - Maria Nockin enjoys the summer opera fare in North America's oldest capital city
Ensemble. Achingly Beautiful - Vivaldi's 'La verità in cimento' at Garsington Opera, reviewed by Roderic Dunnett
Ensemble. Musical Outlooks - Bill Newman attends a selection of concerts at London's Wigmore Hall
CD Spotlight. A Strange Choice - Violin concertos by Vivaldi, heard by Howard Smith. '... reliable and persuasive ...'
Ensemble. Full of Delights - Nicola Benedetti and the European Union Chamber Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Cultural Delights - Gerald Fenech visits Slovenia for Festival Maribor
CD Spotlight. Expressive Power - Vivaldi oboe concertos, heard by Robert Anderson. '... faultlessly delivered ...'
Profile. Two Americans in Paris - Maria Nockin talks to Vivica Genaux and Lawrence Brownlee
CD Spotlight. Sheer Delight - Table music by Biber, recommended by Patric Standford. '... a superb and sensitive performance ...'
Ensemble. Sex and Heroism - 'Juditha triumphans' at the Sferisterio Festival, appreciated by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Dramatic Strength - The 'Glory of God' through three Verdi operas at the Sferisterio Festival 2010, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Delightful Contributions - Nicholas Kok conducts Sinfonia Viva, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Chicago Baroque - Trio Settecento's A German Bouquet, recommended by Malcolm Tattersall. '... very fine performances of some rarely heard but attractive music ...'
Ensemble. Sparks Really Flew - Mike Wheeler listens to the Denner Ensemble
CD Spotlight. Sterling Playing - Wendy Warner's interpretations of Popper and Piatigorsky, heard by Howard Smith. '... sovereign music-making deserving of the highest accolades.'
CD Spotlight. Beauty of Timbre - Vivica Genaux sings Vivaldi, heard by Maria Nockin. 'Genaux's diction is excellent ...'
Ensemble. Excellent Singing - Handel and Rossini from Los Angeles Opera impress Maria Nockin
Ensemble. Invigorating Performance - Sinfonia Viva plays Judith Weir, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Splendidly Performed - Baroque music for cello, recommended by Howard Smith. 'An exemplary CD ...'
Ask Alice - The truth about bishops and priests, with classical music agony aunt Alice McVeigh
CD Spotlight. Utterly Absorbing - A sampler from Cedille Records, enjoyed by Howard Smith. '... top quality standards.'
Ensemble. Powerful Stuff - Howard Smith was at the last Vector Wellington Orchestra programme engineered by Christine Pearce
CD Spotlight. Diversely Experienced - Music for bassoon, harpsichord and double bass, impresses Howard Smith. '... an outright "tour de force".'
Ensemble. Clarity of Texture - Lawrence Budmen listens to the Remenyi Ede Chamber Orchestra
Ask Alice - When to put up and shut up, by classical music agony aunt Alice McVeigh
CD Spotlight. Deceptive Naturalness - Red Priest's 'Nightmare in Venice', entertains Howard Smith. '... irrepressible, chic ...'
CD Spotlight. Simply Dazzling - Piazzolla and Vivaldi's 'Four Seasons', heard by Robert Hugill. '... I rather missed the sound of the bandoneon ...'
Pure Fashion? - Several Composers in Search of an Identity, by Béla Hartmann
Record Box. Almost Supersonic - Vivaldi recorder concertos, enjoyed by Robert Anderson
Ensemble. Beauty of Line - Andreas Scholl in London, heard by Robert Hugill
Ensemble. Fascinating Programming - A report from the Sarasota Music Festival 2007, by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. Various Challenges - Music by Trevor Hold, Elgar, Parry, Stanford, Delius and Vivaldi from the Derwent Singers, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Rich Gutsy Tone - Kala Ramnath and friends meet Sinfonia Viva, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Remarkably Attractive - A rare London concert by Schola Pietatis Antonio Vivaldi, reviewed by Robert Hugill
Ensemble. Arresting Playing - A recital by Althea Ifeka and Katherine May, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Record box. Rarely-heard Vivaldi - Concertos played by Ensemble Guidantus, reviewed by Malcolm Tattersall
CD Spotlight. Tonal beauty - The first recording of Vivaldi's 'Bajazet', appreciated by Maria Nockin. '... absolutely stunning.'
Ensemble. Sea and sky - More from the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, reviewed by Malcolm Tattersall
Canine choreography - An Austrian music professor goes to the dogs, by Tess Crebbin
CD Spotlight. Infectious delight - Stokowski conducts Vivaldi and Handel, reviewed by Patric Standford. 'His approach was clearly monumental.'
Ensemble. Richly sumptuous - The Czech Moravian Virtuosi Orchestra sparkles in novelties from Europe, by Lawrence Budmen
CD Spotlight. Eminently listenable - Vivaldi's concertos dedicated to Johann Georg Pisendel, reviewed by Robert Hugill. '... an attractive and lively group.'
Ensemble. A special treat - Maria Nockin enthuses over Ewa Podles' recent recital for San Diego Opera
CD Spotlight. Conjuring tricks - The first in a new series of Vivaldi bassoon concertos, admired by Robert Anderson. 'The virtuosity of Tamás Benkócs is a constant wonder ...'
Ensemble. Congress of passions - The Finchley Choral Society Centenary Concert, reviewed by Keith Bramich
Ensemble. ... and a dash of chutzpah - Rex Harley listens to the Welsh Baroque Orchestra's 'Concerto Mania'
CD Spotlight. Fertile imagination - Arrangement with a vengeance from Red Priest, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... never a dull moment and entertainment value paramount.'
CD Spotlight. Reinventing the wheel - A soaring Pegasus, appreciated by Jennifer Paull. '... a brilliance that makes you want to listen to it over and over again ...'
CD Spotlight - Dazzling virtuosity. '... the power to surprise as well as to beguile and delight.' Maurice Steger plays Vivaldi concerti, by David Thompson
Record Box - Vivaldi in season - Fruitful music, with Basil Ramsey