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Having brought down the curtain on his career in the theatre with his last opera William Tell, written in 1829, Rossini turned to writing a sizeable amount of salon music for the piano. Written over a period of ten years, the thirteen volumes that make up his Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of Old Age) include titles such as Ah! The Peas, My Morning Hygienic Prelude and the Anti-Dancing Waltz. Never far from the surface, the wit and sparkle of Rossini's miniatures are beautifully captured by Alessandro Marangoni, whose project to record the complete works now reaches Volume 6.

“This is one of the more ironic volumes in the series, which includes some of Rossini’s best loved sets from the Péchés de vieillesse that take food as their theme. Rossini is the master chef in his musical kitchen, combining nibbles, comedy, virtuosity, love of life and a ready smile!” - Alessandro Marangoni.

Naxos 8.573107
ROSSINI, G.: Piano Music, Vol. 6
- Peches de vieillesse, Vols. 4, 6, 10 and 14

Alessandro Marangoni

Rossini’s operas have remained amongst the most popular in the repertoire but over the last decade of his life he turned largely to piano music. The Péchés de vieillesse (Sins of Old Age) occupy thirteen volumes, and the deliciously informal and comic fourth is called Quatre hors d’oeuvres et quatre mendiants. Its theme is food, and Rossini lavishes all his abundant abilities of characterisation in his descriptive passages, not least the introduction of a parakeet.

Listen to an excerpt from track 3, Les raisins: A ma petite perruche (Grapes for my Little Budgie)

Previous discs in the cycle

Volume 1

“Naxos and the distinguished, award-winner pianist Alessandro Marangoni, deserve to be congratulated for the decision to record the complete Péchés. The present set occupies two CDs and each is a delight from beginning to end.” - MusicWeb International

Volume 2

“This music, all surfaces reflecting gilded salons, requires a high level of artistry to pull off. Marangoni sparkles and seduces over and over again.” - Toronto Star

Volume 3

“...humor, pianistic ingenuity, and unexpected harmonic zingers. The pieces are trickier to play than they sound, and make the most impact with a pianist who understands their character and can “ham them up” without being vulgar.”

Volume 4

“It is the richness, the contrast among these pieces that makes them so delightful to hear, and Marangoni’s free-and-easy virtuosity lets listeners focus on the delights of the music...” –

Volume 5

“...richly textured variety, filled with clever little quotations from other composers. Rossini writes with all the craft of Schubert, the singing quality of Chopin and the bravura of Liszt—but in miniature.” - Musical Toronto

About the Artist

Born in Italy in 1979, Alessandro Marangoni has appeared throughout Europe, America and China as a soloist and as a chamber musician, collaborating with some of Italy’s leading performers.  He is a member of the Trio Albatros Ensemble, and in 2007 recorded the piano works of Victor de Sabata for the fortieth anniversary of the latter’s death, playing in a recital at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan with Daniel Barenboim. In 2007 he won the prestigious Amici di Milano International Prize for Music. He teaches piano and chamber music in master-classes in Europe and South America.

The Italian Caress: Alessandro Marangoni talks to Jeremy Siepmann

Other discs by Alessandro Marangoni

Gradus ad Parnassum Vol. 1

“I find some of the exercises, especially in the hands of Alessandro Marangoni, to be brilliant displays of virtuosity.”
- American Record Guide

Gradus ad Parnassum Vol. 2

“Marangoni consistently finds the latent poetry and early romantic fire in these pieces.” –

Gradus ad Parnassum Vol. 3

“Marangoni is to be congratulated for bringing us into contact with this extraordinary body of works. His playing is imaginative and, as expected, technically brilliant.”
- American Record Guide

Gradus ad Parnassum Vol. 4

“Marangoni lays everything out in clearly articulated, deeply committed performances.” - Musical Toronto

Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2

“Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s two piano concertos...have to be about the most cheerful pieces by anyone written in those ten years! Sound and playing are excellent…”
- American Record Guide

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