Utrecht Early Music Festival 2016 part 20: Giardino di Delizie

The first fringe concert of the day had taken place at the former bulwark cum observatory Sonnenborgh. My last fringe concert of the day was also at Sonnenborgh. Ensemble Il Giardino di Delizie were going to perform.

It was not the first time I heard this ensemble. It certainly should not be the last 20160828 Venetian Portraits 005time! I may not be a fan of madrigals à la Windsor Consort. I love catches and glees. So this concert offering “musical views from the Bosco Parrasio” with fugas and follies by Corelli, Scarlatti, Stradella and others, might be just the thing for me.

I was not mistaken: this was a delightful concert. Though part of the public were not pleased with the changes to the program. For though each new piece was neatly introduced, most of what was told to the public could not be caught by people sitting in the last few rows. After the concert, my left side neighbour told me she did not catch the explanations about which composer was teacher or student of which, nor which piece by which composer was going to be played.

The concert started without a hiccup with the four ladies performing Corelli’s trio sonata opus 3 nr 1 in F as a delightful warm-up to the rest. But then the changes to the program were announced. As far as I understood things, the trio sonata by Antonio Caldara and the trio sonata by Giovanni Bononcini were dropped. Unfortunately, the sequence of works and composers was also altered.

Second came the Sinfonia by Carlo Ambrogio Lonati, which was followed by the trio sonata nr 7 in G by Stradella. After work(s) by Stradella came one by pa Scarlatti or Alessandro Scarlatti, father of Domenico of the many harpsichord concerts. Il Giardino di Delizie played pop Scarlatti’s sinfonia “Correa nel seno amato”, which was a bit of a change from his church music.

There followed the sonata opus 2 nr 12 (ciaccona) by Corelli and at least one other, possibly two works by Stradella. But by then the public had fallen in love with the four ladies. So the applause refused to die down till Giardino di Delizie came back on stage and was seduced to give an encore.


View into a part of the old fort, later observatory and now Early Music Festival venue where ensemble Giardino di Delizie’s concert took place

It was a delight to hear this Giardino perform the Stradella and Corelli works. The trio sonata which opened their concerts was impressive, but their performance of sonata opus 2 nr 12 would have pleased Corelli himself enormously.

I knew I was probably going to be too late to enjoy the last half hour of carillon music in Flora’s quiet, hidden garden. But the bells could be heard ringing out across old Utrecht, as I made my way back from Sonnenborg to Utrecht’s imposing tower. The last two concerts had more than made up for a rather disappointing start of the day.

Ensemble Giardino di Delizie
Katarzyna Solecka and Ewa Anna Augustynowicz violin;
Cristina Vidoni cello;
Lucia Adelaide di Nicola harpsichord

Ensemble Giardino di Delizie is on Facebook and performed trio sonatas and sinfonias by Arcangelo Corelli, Carlo Ambrogio Lonati, Alessandro Scarlatti, Alessandro Stradella.

Youtube Giardino di Delizie


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