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David Hurwitz, May 2020

It’s extremely fine. The playing is as crisp and lively as you could ask for. The string texture is beautifully tuned and the whole thing goes like clockwork. © 2020 Watch review

Robin Stowell
The Strad, December 2013

Particularly enjoyable are the buoyant fugues of nos. 7 and 12, the languorous Musette of no. 6, the beautiful Polonaise of no. 3 and the jaunty finale of no. 1. The concertino playing is largely good, particularly Kevin Mallon’s solo and linking passages in no. 11, and additional ornamentation is commendably subservient to line. © 2013 The Strad Read complete review

Phil Muse
Audio Video Club of Atlanta, August 2013

There are a lot of choice beauties throughout the Opus 6 set.

…utterly charming is the way Mallon and the Aradia Ensemble approach every single one of these concertos. For the naturalness and spontaneity that come through in these performances are the last, best attainments of the musical artist. © 2013 Audio Video Club of Atlanta Read complete review

WQXR (New York), July 2013

Handel composed two collections of concerto grossi: Op. 3 and Op. 6. The latter is to be considered a clear homage to the model of his predecessor Corelli, and it’s music into which Handel pour the best of his art. This three-CD box set stars Toronto’s Aradia Ensemble, directed by Canadian Kevin Mallon, in taut and stylish performances. © WQXR (New York)

Tiina Kiik
The WholeNote, May 2013

Toronto’s early music Aradia Ensemble, under the energetic direction of conductor/violinist Kevin Mallon, performs with grace and momentum in this three-disc collection of George Frideric Handel’s 12 Concerti Grossi, Op 6.

The sound quality is clear, with each instrumental line carefully balanced. The liner notes are informative and concise. Mallon has brought out the very best in his Aradia ensemble as their passionate performances radiate Handel’s inquisitive artistry. © 2013 The WholeNote Read complete review, April 2013

Playing with verve and enthusiasm, the Aradia Ensemble handles all the concertos in a manner both spirited and highly attractive. © 2013 Read complete review

Lisa Flynn
WFMT (Chicago), March 2013

Handel’s Concerti Grossi contain some of the finest orchestral music of the 18th century. The Op 6 collection brims with a wealth of variety, color and dance rhythms. The combination of full orchestra with a concertino solo group allows for both breadth and intimacy, producing concertos in the fullest sense. © 2013 WFMT (Chicago)

John Terauds
Musical Toronto, March 2013

Mallon leads the enterprise from the first violin desk and contributes several solos.

The result is a model of careful understatement enhanced by an impeccable sense of tempo, phrasing and breathing in the music.

…this is an excellent recording of beautiful music that rewards both a casual listener and a serious devotee. © 2013 Musical Toronto Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, March 2013

Composed in 1739, when Handel was at the peak of his career, the opus 6 Concerti Grossi are undeniably his great orchestral masterpiece. Probably stung by the actions of the London publisher, John Walsh, who had cobbled together a series of unrelated orchestral movements from various sources and printed them as Handel’s Concerti Grossi , the composer—who was himself no paragon of virtue when it came to ‘borrowing’ music—soon set to work on writing a coherent set of 12 Concerti that were completed five years later. Unfortunately for the composer the success of these concertos had the effect of drawing greater interest in the earlier set. Scored for a small group of strings and continuo, Kevin Mallon writes in the disc notes: ‘what is often less well known’, though in fact it is well known, ‘the composer wrote oboe parts for Concertos Nos. 1, 2, 5 and 6. Aradia has used these on this recording, and indeed has made them a model for our own oboe parts for the other concerti (except Concerto 4)’. Period correctness is a minefield of uncertainties, but the old saying ‘when in doubt leave it out’ is always a good maxim. Tempos are spacious compared with the much lauded recording from Andrew Manze and the Academy of Ancient Music, who knock a massive ten minutes off of Mallon’s total time, some of that difference allowing Mallon more scope to round off slow movements though at the cost of adding a third disc. The playing of the Canadian group, the Aradia Ensemble, is generally clean and unfussy, and they get around the fast allegros with estimable dexterity, while Lucas Harris’s theorbo makes a most effective opening to the slow movement of the Fourth Concerto.  The group of five solo string instruments—violins and celli—possess that degree of pungency we expect from gut strings, and I like the church acoustic that rounds the tone and stands well apart from the overly dry quality that is becoming fashionable in period instrument recordings. © David’s Review Corner

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