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“For intimacy and brio, there’s Ottavio Dantone and the five musicians of Accademia Bizantina… Poised in the Siciliano of the E major concerto, merry in the Allegro of the A major, strikingly confident in the whirlwind Presto of the F minor and dazzling in the Italianate Adagio of the D minor, the ensemble is faultless” The Independent on Bach Harpsichord Concertos. This is the second disc in the new L’Oiseau Lyre partnership with Accademia Bizantina and Ottavio Dantone; it promises to be a stunning contribution to commemorate the Handel celebrations in 2009.
Full of characteristic melodies and sonorous harmonies, Handel’s organ concertos op. 4 were composed in 1735-36, when Handel was in his prime. It is the first time the Accademia Bizantina and Ottavio Dantone have recorded these famous Baroque works.
As a point of difference, in two of the six concertos, Dantone also performs a solo prelude (improvisation) before the beginning of the concerto, as Handel did in performances. Recorded in Halle, Handel’s birth place, in the Sankt Bartholomäus Church, the church where many members of the Handel family got married.
1. Organ Concerto in G minor, Op.4/3, HWV 291
2. Organ Concerto in B flat major, Op.4/2, HWV 290
3. Organ Concerto in G minor, Op.4/1, HWV 289
4. Organ Concerto in F major, Op.4/5, HWV 293
5. Organ Concerto in B flat major, Op.4/6, HWV 294 (originally for harp)
6. Organ Concerto in F major, Op.4/4, HWV 292