More than a dull ripieno!
Baroque Sonatas for Viola
Francesca Venturi Ferriolo, Hwa-Jeong Lee, Johannes Berger
Da Vinci Classics C00280. 72’12
Sonatas by Johann Gottlieb Graun, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach,
Johann Gottlieb Janitsch, Felice Giardini, William Flackton.
“The viola is commonly held to be of little importance in the musical context.
Apparently the cause of this may be the fact that it is often played by people who are not yet very advanced with their studies, or who do not have particular natural gifts … or because this instrument offers few advantages to those who play it“.
So wrote Johann Joachim Quantz in his 1752 treatise On Playing the Flute. The intervening centuries have done little to enhance its reputation, the continuation of ‘viola jokes’ amongst orchestral players being just one example. This imaginative recording by viola player Francesca Venturi Ferriolo is an important contribution to recognising the importance of the viola, in particular during the transitional period towards the end of the Baroque era, when a wide variety of styles developed in Europe including the Galant style, the Empfindsamer Stil centred on Berlin, and the emerging Mannheim and Viennese styles.