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Naxos hosts one of the most diverse collections of Baroque music available anywhere, ranging from the best known masterpieces to more esoteric musical gems. Explore the exuberant sound of the Baroque era from this hand-picked selection of best-selling recordings, popular compilations and recent releases, performed by artists of the highest calibre.

Recent Releases

Naxos 8.570944
COUPERIN, F.: Pieces de violes avec la basse chifree: Suites Nos. 1 and 2 / Pieces de Clavecin: 27th Ordre
Perkola, Hakkinen

François Couperin wrote some of France’s greatest music in the classical style. The Suites for Viola da gamba and Harpsichord are late works, published in 1728, and are perfect examples of his richly expressive style which here draws upon Italian models as well as, perhaps, celebrating another genius of the French school, Marin Marais, who had died in the year the Suites were published. Intense and passionate, the suites offer lyricism and virtuosity, Italian bravura and French richness. The last of Couperin’s harpsichord ordres (or suites) consists of four varied pieces, including Les Chinois, an early example of interest in China in Western music.

Naxos 8.572672
GALUPPI, B.: Keyboard Sonatas, Vol. 3

Known as Il Buranello after his island birthplace of Burano, opera composer Baldassare Galuppi was also admired as a keyboard player. His sonatas are quiet, refined gems of the utmost elegance and lyricism, with expressive contrasts ranging from poignant operatic aria style movements to the energetic influence of Scarlatti. This selection includes late works from the Passatempo al Cembalo. Matteo Napoli has been praised for his “enviable poise” (International Record Review) in volume 1 (8.572263) and “finely nuanced” playing (Fanfare) in volume 2 (8.572490).

Naxos 8.572745-46
HANDEL, G.F.: Acis and Galatea
Kotoski, Gordon, Siebert, Opalach, Seattle Symphony Chorale and Orchestra, Schwarz

Acis and Galatea, variously described as a pastoral, a ‘little opera’ and a masque, is one of Handel’s most popular works. It is a delectable succession of pastoral airs, love-lorn lyrics, and sprightly or mourning choruses, spiced by the pungent and unforgettable interjection of the one-eyed giant Polyphemus, who destroys the idyll of the shepherd Acis and the nymph Galatea. Handel had first turned to the subject in a cantata written in Naples in 1708. His English work, formally a masque, went through several stages until the two-act version of 1739 written principally by John Gay and graced by Handel’s exquisite music.

Naxos 8.571208
HANDEL, G.F.: Concerti Grossi, Op. 6, Nos. 1, 6 and 9 / VIVALDI, A. / BACH, C.P.E.: Flute Concertos
Goff, Seattle Symphony, Schwarz

Handel’s Concerti Grossi, Op 6 are written for small solo string ensemble and orchestra, a combination which invites elegant interplay between like-sounding but distinctive groups. Nicknamed Il gardellino, or ‘The Goldfinch’, Vivaldi’s Flute Concerto is as filled with charming melody and sounds from nature as anything in The Four Seasons. Possibly written for King Frederick the Great, the easy grace of CPE Bach’s Flute Concerto in D minor has a surprisingly dramatic and virtuoso finale. This recording brings together leading soloists of the Seattle Symphony in a feast of 18th-century refinement.

Naxos 8.572700-02
HANDEL, G.F.: Theodora [Oratorio]
Wieland, Schmid, Vitzthum, Schoch, Mertens, Junge Kantorei, Frankfurt Baroque Orchestra, J.C. Martini

Set in a time of ancient Rome’s persecution of the Christians, Handel’s late masterpiece Theodora tells of the tragic martyrdom of the heroine and her lover Didymus. The challenging nature of the libretto with its religious conflict, cruelty, self-sacrifice and brothel scene was discomforting for contemporary audiences, and despite Handel’s magnificent music the oratorio was his least successful. This is part of a series of Handel oratorios from Martini and Junge Kantorei.

Other Releases

various artists
Naxos 8.501061

Cologne Chamber Orchestra, Müller-Brühl
Naxos 8.557124

ALBINONI, T.G.: Oboe Concertos, Vol. 1
Camden, The London Virtuosi, Georgiadis
Naxos 8.550739

various artists
Naxos 8.552103-04

BACH, J.S.: St John Passion, BWV 245
The Choir of New College Oxford, Collegium Novum, Higginbottom
Naxos 8.557296-97

BACH, J.S.: Violin Concertos, BWV 1041-1043
Nishizaki, Capella Istropolitana, Dohnányi
Naxos 8.550194

CORELLI, A.: Concerti Grossi, Op. 6 Nos. 1-6
Capella Istropolitana, Krecek
Naxos 8.550402

various artists
Naxos 8.552109-10

HANDEL, G.F.: Messiah (1751 Version)
soloists, Choir of New College Oxford, Academy of Ancient Music, Higginbottom
Naxos 8.570131-32

HANDEL, G.F.: Violin Sonatas (Complete)
Ensemble Vintage Köln
Naxos 8.572245

PACHELBEL, J.: Organ Works
Naxos 8.554380

PURCELL, H.: Dido and Aeneas
Amps, Crookes, Asch, The Scholars Baroque Ensemble
Naxos 8.553108

RAMEAU, J.-P.: Castor et Pollux
soloists, Opera in Concert, Aradia Ensemble, Mallon
Naxos 8.660118-19

SAMMARTINI, G.B.: Symphonies J-C 4, 9, 16, 23, 36, 62
Aradia Ensemble, Mallon
Naxos 8.557298

SCARLATTI, D.: Sacred Vocal Music
Immortal Bach Ensemble, Schuldt-Jensen
Naxos 8.570382

TELEMANN, G.P.: Darmstadt Overtures (Suites)
Cologne Chamber Orchestra, Müller-Brühl
Naxos 8.554244

various artists
Naxos 8.552101-02

VIVALDI, A.: The Four Seasons, Concerto Alla Rustica
Nishizaki, Capella Istropolitana, Gunzenhauser
Naxos 8.550056

VIVALDI, A.: Griselda
soloists, Opera in Concert, Aradia Ensemble, Kevin Mallon
Naxos 8.660211-13

various artists
Naxos 8.558160-61

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