What better music than Vivaldi’s ‘Le Quattro Stagioni’ to celebrate Rachel’s 50th birthday year! Together with the star players of Brecon Baroque, Rachel guides you through the seasons of nature and life.
“Podger’s Midas touch makes even a warhorse such as Vivaldi’s Four Seasons sound fresh-minted. She and her Brecon players see these concertos not as orchestral but as chamber music. Yet there is no lack of power in the big tuttis...This Vivaldi has an improvisatory quality, making you listen with cleansed ears.” Sunday Times – Album of the Week
PLEASE NOTE – THIS LP FEATURES THE FOUR SEASONS ONLY, NOT THE EXTRA CONCERTOS AS PER THE SACD VERSION.
"Part of the freshness stems from the interaction between Podger and her one-to-a-part ensemble. She’s first among equals and the dynamic couldn’t be further removed from the usual notion of the concerto as a vehicle for the all-conquering soloist…it’s striking just how many soloistic opportunities Vivaldi offers the ensemble…Musical details are incisively etched."
"[Podger] with a select group of eight musicians, one to each part. So far from sounding spartan, this releases a freedom and buoyancy in the playing that is quite delightful. The "nymphs and shepherds" dance in "Spring" with the lightest of steps. The horses gallop along in the "Autumn" hunt with a joyous, almost Disney-like cartoon bounce. The playing is high quality throughout and three more Vivaldi concertos, each as characterful in its own right, make up an enjoyable disc."
"It’s not just that the actual playing is superb: serene virtuoso fluency from Podger, gorgeously supported by her colleagues...It’s also that this is something genuinely, effortlessly and naturally different...I’ve never heard their every twist and turn served up as quite the succession of changing sound worlds as appears here."
"Podger’s Midas touch makes even a warhorse such as Vivaldi’s Four Seasons sound fresh-minted. She and her Brecon players see these concertos not as orchestral but as chamber music. Yet there is no lack of power in the big tuttis...This Vivaldi has an improvisatory quality, making you listen with cleansed ears."
"Why consider another recording? The answer lies in many things: Podger’s bouncy phrasing and clarity, myriad subtleties in textures and dynamics, the kindliness of a recording that, unlike some, allows the music and its reverberations to breathe...There’s also the exquisite balance of parts shared between Podger’s eight-strong ensemble."