The legendary Italian composer Giovanni Battista Pergolesi was born 300 years ago, in 1710. To mark the anniversary, Naďve re-issues three renowned recordings to feature his choral music, in a specially-priced box set, headed by the Gramophone award-winning version of his Stabat Mater by Rinaldo Alessandrini and Concerto Italiano, considered one of the best ever recorded.
The fact that Pergolesi died at only 26 years is only one reason why music lovers have always admired and been fascinated by him. His Stabat Mater is among the most popular sacred works ever composed, at its heart a universally-felt pain and emotion. Of this recording Gramophone remarked: “Alessandrini lays emphasis on the relationship between words and music, and he has come up with some ideas which probe deeper than many, in his aim to bring the piece to life with expressive fervour”.
This 3-CD set gathers together this winning disc with Fabio Biondi’s recording of the Salve Regina and Alessandrini’s of Messa di San Emidio. This latter work is paired on its disc with another mass that was premiered in Rome, Scarlatti’s Messa per il santissimo natale. An Editor’s Choice in Gramophone, the magazine said of the 2008 recording: “The performances are terrific. The Pergolesi especially is shattering at times, while the Scarlatti is gorgeous. Even by Alessandrini's high standards this is smashing”.
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