Handel’s eight magnificent suites: a play by Francesco Corti

c Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1759): Continuation in A major, F major, D minor, E minor, E major, F sharp minor, G minor, F minor HWV 426-433. Open up with Pastor Fido, Teseo, Radomisto, Rodelinda HWV 8, 9, 12, 19. William Babel (c1689-1723): Prelude ; Overture with Rinaldo ; Lascia ch’io pianga by Rinaldo [Suits of the Most celebrated LessonsFirst set en fa majeur]. Francesco Corti, harpsichord. Booklet in English, French, Italian. February 2021. TT 69’26 + 77’14. Arcana A499

For these eight Continuation published in 1720, we remember the lightness of Scott Ross (Erato, March 1984), the tallest artist who embraced the curves of the landscape, in the sober way of his master Kenneth Gilbert (Harmonia Mundi). In our columns for December 2020 John Lacroix awarded the fullness and sophistication of Pierre Khantai (Mira). Strength, energy, but also flexibility and agility (“his right hand has wings”): in these terms, Handel’s contemporaries praised his skill at playing the keyboard. It is the griffin-half-cat-hemisphere in the fairy-tale bestiary that best describes the performative features of Francesco Corti. Strong and proud posture of a lion, sharpness of an eagle look and not less a carnivore. Capable of relentless endurance, which will be admired in the sequence of Air-Doubles-Presto Suite №3. Or how to combine incredible determination with the wildest zeal. Under a less mad look, his ear was already lecturing Trembling the first After. or opening Rodelindaone of the transcripts attributed to Handel himself.

Because this double album also welcomes some arrangements taken from the lyrical universe caro sassone-his feather or Babel, which abounds in the aviarydecorated. Francesco Corti does not miss a single crumb of these frills, and does not skimp on salt shakers or spice racks to season these pranks. Babel, as well as Gottlieb Muffat and Francesco Geminiani, inspired the ornament, which, according to the interpreter, “is more persistent in certain Continuation, lighter in others, if possible alternating styles. In addition to the design of the text, we admire the mastery of the tone of each work. It is this diversity and control of all parameters that determine the price of this impeccable course. Exemplary rhythm, both on the hectic and meditative pages: fluidity Current HWV 429, quiet breathing Sarabande consistent. Able protean genius in the fifth After to move from the nobility a German from high quality to fancy denial variations known as ” Harmonious blacksmith “.

It rustles Preludemines of the great lord with Largocalculated emancipationallegro : here’s a perfect read After in F sharp minor, finished amazing Presto which makes us beg that Francesco Corti fills the scarlet discography. In this type of devilry, we cannot convey how his zealous impulsiveness can be combined with absolute dexterity, which keeps the score with absolute accuracy. Let’s still listen to the beak that beats fiercely Presto with After G minor! Opportunity to congratulate the wonderful harpsichord of Andrea Restelli based on the work of Christian Fater in 1738: honed mechanics instantly responds to intentions, a range of colors that, from clear drinks to heavy aggregates, never loses its transparency. , – also thanks in case of unsurpassed sound recording.

In January we were exposed to brilliance Handel v. Scarlatti with Cristiano Gaudio (“Enceladus”). To hear the valor of his elder here, we must admit that the younger Italian generation knows how to burn boards. We would be proud of the impressive nature of this solo performance if we were not afraid that the argument would indicate a lack of sensitivity or temptation to cook. Listening contradicts any suspicion, and this is not the last genius of these two CDs to provide the surest, most complete taste on the stage, which thinks first of all about the representation. We summoned a chimerical animal, but the imaginary that speaks to us is not detached from reality: Francesco Corti recalls that playing this music requires “a perfect knowledge of the various musical languages ​​of the time.” He offers us here a gallery open to this network, and which quintessentially influences it in the melting pot, where each work is embodied as an actor. And dramatized by the considerable accuracy of the pericope. How not to mention this tirade of the famous playwright, born in the second homeland of the Saxons? : « The whole world is a stage, and all men and women are just actors In two and a half hours, and this is the whole world, Francesco Corti was able to crystallize the essence of this theater.

Sound: 9.5 – Booklet: 9 – Repertoire: 10 – Interpretation: 10

Christopher Stein

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