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Georg Friedrich Händel

Al Ayre Español

Trio Sonatas Op. 2

  • Type CD
  • Label Challenge Classics
  • UPC 0608917279726
  • Catalog number CC 72797
  • Release date 08 March 2019
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About the album

Under the title I vanni occulti, ensemble Al Ayre Español, led by maestro Eduardo López Banzo, offers us its personal vision of Handel’s Sonatas Op. 2. The phrase comes from the oratorio Il trionfo del tempo e del disinganno (The Triumph of Time and Disillusion, 1707). The reference to this aria is not anecdotal, because Sonata No. 1 in this Op. 2 contains references to this music — an aspect that, hardly surprisingly, constitutes a characteristic element of the composition technique of the maestro from Halle.

Over the course of his life, Handel composed 20 trio sonatas, 12 of which were published in London in two different collections: six sonatas were published in 1733 as Op. 2 (HWV 386–391) and another seven printed in 1739 as Op. 5 (HWV 396–402). In a disguised allusion to the vanitas allegory and the fleeting passage of time, Al Ayre Español presents, just three years after its recording of Op. 5 [Challenge Classics, CC72663], an introspective version of Op. 2, which completes and, at the same time, complements the group’s first rendition of Handel’s trio sonatas. The two recordings form a single project that offers the listener a passionate and impassioned, southern and Mediterranean version of this exquisite chamber music. This version is marked by the emergence, with particular expressive intensity, of the two aesthetic poles present in the chamber music universe of Handel (and of López Banzo himself): the most contained lyricism combined with the most explosive fury.

Caecilia-Concert, Ars Antiqua Austria & Eduardo López Banzo at Early Music Festival Utrecht


image This weekend the annual Early Music Festival in Utrecht starts and there will be Challenge artists performing on different locations.On Sunday August 28th the Caecilia-Concert will perform in VB Leeuwenbergh in Utrecht at 20.00 hours. The trio will play a number of beautiful works by Frescobaldi. About the last cd of the trio, called "Schmelzer & Co" the critics were enthusiastic, take for instance Gramophone: "Intonation is outstanding...and the ...

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