This band were one of the major groups of the Italian prog rock scene in the seventies and one of the few Italian bands that were successful outside their own country.
"La Via Della Seta", which means the silk road, can be regarded as one long suite. All tracks are linked together and the music flows without any interruption making an imaginary journey along this road, where you encounter the ghosts of merchants, pilgrims, missionaries, soldiers, nomads and cruel barbarians exploring mysterious cities and civilizations. The music that comes along with this concept recalls the best moments of Le Orme…
The most comprehensive edition devoted to Gioachino Rossini marking his 150th anniversary.
Born in 1792, Rossini was the most popular opera composer of his time. Although he retired from the Opera scene in 1829, he continued to compose in other genres, including sacred music, piano and chamber works. He did gather his late works under the ironic title Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of Old Age), which veils a true collection of masterworks.
It includes thirteen complete operas, the Rossini Gala - the legendary concert given at the Lincoln Center in 1992, five complete recitals including the recent recording with Joyce DiDonato or the famous Rockwell Blake.
"La scala di seta" is an operatic farsa comica in one act by Gioachino Rossini to a libretto by Giuseppe Maria Foppa. It was first performed in Venice, Italy, at the Teatro San Moisè on 9 May 1812. The overture has been frequently recorded and continues to be featured in the modern concert repertoire.
From 1810 to 1813, the young Rossini composed four Italian farse, beginning with La cambiale di matrimonio (The Bill of Marriage), his first opera, and ending with Il Signor Bruschino. These types of short pieces were popular in Venice at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century. The pieces were intimate, with a cast of five to seven singers, always including a pair of lovers, at least two comic parts, and one or two other minor roles. The style called for much visual comedy improvised by the players. As compared to many genres of opera, acting and comedic talent is more important relative to the required singing ability. Rossini’s farces also have a significant sentimental element.
'… brimful with alert character and beauty whilst the two piano pieces are delightful in their raucous melodies … briliantly done by Tanyel' (Classical Net Review). It was brave and useful and laudable of Seta Tanyel and the now-defunct label Collins Classics to have embarked, in the 1990s, in a thorough exploration of the music of Xaver Scharwenka (1850-1924), and one must be grateful to Hyperion to have reissued almost all of it. The 4-volume traversal of his solo piano music doesn't embrace I think Scharwenka's complete piano output, but it is still very substantial. Add to that the three first piano concertos (apparently Collins didn't live long enough to record the Fourth, and the first is the one disc that Hyperion did not reissue, Piano Concerto 1, obviously because they already had another one in their catalog, Rubinstein: Piano Concerto No. 4; Scharwenka: Piano Concerto No. 1) and what I think was the complete chamber music. However, I didn't always feel that the results lived up to the project's promises.
'Tanyel's clear enthusiasm for this unhackneyed programme is utterly refreshing … The performance reminds us again just how well she understands the piano's Romantic repertoire' (Classic CD). 'the music here could hardly be more sympathetically presented than by Tanyel, whose performances are immaculate in their musicianship and virtuosity' (Gramophone). Seta Tanyel, the Armenian pianist, demonstrates a flair for the virtuosic style of German-Polish Scharwenka. She projects a well-rounded tone, a flexible sense of rhythm, a seamless technique, a fertile imagination and a daring panache. She seems to genuinly love these beautiful, light-hearted compositions. Scharwenka's music (who lived in the States for seven years) possesses energy, harmonic interest, strong rhythm, many beautiful melodies and much Polish national character. A highly enjoyable recording.
'The recorded sound has all the freshness needed for this music' (Pianist). 'Seta Tanyel plays her well-contrasted selection with obvious affection and persuasive charm … playing of outstanding drive and verve' (International Record Review). Hyperion's series of the solo piano music of Xaver Scharwenka (reissued from Collins), played by Seta Tanyel, is worth getting to know for everyone who appreciates romantic piano music. It reveals Scharwenka as a deft craftsman with plenty of good ideas and deep knowledge of how to utilize the potential of his instrument to full effect. Volume 1, however, is far from the strongest installment in the series, and if you started with this one, were disappointed and decided to stop investigating, I encourage you to reconsider - volume 2, for instance, is definitely superior (though Scharwenka's concertos and chamber works are superior still).
'Scharwenka could not have been better served. He deserves no less' (International Record Review). 'The recorded sound has all the freshness needed for this music' (Pianist). Many young pianists of my generation cut their teeth on one or another of Xaver Scharwenka's Polish Dances; he composed about thirty of them. The Op. 3, No. 1 was immensely popular, selling millions of copies and that's the one I learned to play when I was about ten or so. On this release are the two Polish Dances, Op. 29, and they are mazurkas in all but name. They are lively and set your toe tapping as played by Seta Tanyel.