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Jerry Dubins
Fanfare, July 2013

For my money, this new Naxos release…is an excellent choice. Playing by Rome’s Orchestra Sinfonica under the leadership of Francesco La Vecchia is stylish and smart, and the recorded sound is bright and nicely detailed…Clementi’s symphonies are…expertly crafted and their many felicities are immensely enjoyable. Recommended. © 2013 Fanfare Read complete review

Ardella Crawford
American Record Guide, May 2013

The current release presents a fine and lively recording of the first two symphonies [of Clementi]. The Rome Symphony[’s]…performance here is outstanding. Good sound, decent notes. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Bill O’Connell
WCLV, March 2013

Muzio Clementi was ‘The Father of the pianoforte’, a performer, teacher, publisher and manufacturer of pioneering importance. But in addition to the works for piano, he also wrote a series of symphonies which, along with Cherubini’s D major Symphony, are the only works by an Italian composer to stand comparison with the great Viennese symphonies of the time. Colourful, characterful and atmospheric, these important works show the influence of Haydn, but also, in their orchestral richness, of Beethoven and Schubert. © 2013 WCLV

Larry Beckwith
The WholeNote, March 2013

Thematic interest, clever orchestration and powerful drama make the case that these works should be more widely known.

This excellent recording will help in that regard. La Vecchia coaxes energetic and spirited performances from his orchestra, featuring particularly fine wind playing. © 2013 The WholeNote Read complete review, January 2013

Nos. 1 and 2 get strong, straightforward performances from Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma under Francesco La Vecchia on a new Naxos CD…both are superficial in a pleasant way and clearly constructed by a solid if not particularly inspired composer. Hearing Clementi’s symphonies may simply lead many listeners to a greater appreciation of the brilliance of greater composers; but these pieces are worthy in their own right, and surely deserve at least occasional performances that allow concertgoers and home listeners alike to expand their aural horizons by sampling some not-quite-mainstream works. © 2013 Read complete review

Christie Grimstad, January 2013

The Orchestra Sinfonica di Roma, led by Francesco La Vecchia, paints Clementi’s works with respectful candidness and transparency.

This Naxos recording is an intermission from expectant composers of the early 19th century. Think larger than piano and technique…think symphonic intensity and immeasurable continuity. Clementi mastered all of this on a level that’s never been fully recognized for years.

…Clementi’s Symphony No° 2 in D major opens with a beautiful dichotomous “Adagio-Allegro” which has bearings of an impish, light-hearted Mozart. Woodwinds, specifically flutes, play an important role in the Clementi compositions. These filigree touches add grace, finesse, sophistication and completion.

Muzio Clementi deserves greater commendation in light of the pivotal contributions he brought to the Classical Era. La Vecchia has a treasure on its hands. © 2013 Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, January 2013

Though Italy would lay claim to Muzio Clementi, it was in London that the young musician became famous, having arrived there when he was just fourteen. With the help of a financial benefactor, who had paid for his journey to England, he was taught keyboard and composition, and was to become the nation’s most eminent exponent of the fortepiano, conductor, composer, and teacher, later moving into music publishing and instrument manufacture. Apart from visiting the country of his birth he never returned there, though they have never failed to embrace a long lost son, for he was, apart from Cherubini, their only praiseworthy composer of symphonies in the early 19th century. Yet, as you will discover in his Overture, there was something in the world of Italian opera in his lifeblood, and, as we shall hear in his two symphonies, he must have been familiar with the works of Beethoven. That we have scores of the two works is largely due to the composer, Alfredo Casella, who reconstructed them from existing manuscripts. His time was well spent, the two works being highly attractive. They are in the conventional four movement format, the third being a Minuet rather than the Scherzo of Beethoven’s symphonies. The outer movements are full of vitality, while his ready gift of melody is evidenced in the slow movements. With 20th-century Italian composers now much indebted to the Rome Orchestra for their on-going series of recordings, they are equally adept in very fine accounts of Clementi, the conductor, Francesco La Vecchia, creating suitably boisterous finales, and elsewhere shaping the music with considerable affection. Good studio sound. © 2013 David’s Review Corner

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