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John J. Puccio
Classical Candor, July 2017

Maestro Halász’s approach to the music sounds suitably refined and appropriately lively. While he doesn’t seem quite as persuasively elegant as some conductors of scores from the Baroque or Classical eras (Marriner was among the heads of the class here), he does project a healthy respect for the music and presents the overtures stylishly enough. Also, while Halász may not seem as exciting as some conductors, he generates a considerable amount of electricity when needed. These are neither hell-bent-for-leather races to the finish line nor staid, overly sedate interpretations. Halász negotiates a steady, reasonable course that does full justice to the music, and the Czech Chamber Philharmonic Pardubice, which numbers about thirty-five or so players, responds splendidly.

Overall, with its lustrous performances and high-quality sound, I’d have to say this is one of the best Naxos releases I’ve heard in a while and should make my list of 2017 favorites. © 2017 Classical Candor Read complete review



Nicholas Sheffo
Fulvue Drive-in, July 2016

…Michael Halász and the Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Pardubice delivering the Italian Opera composer here in a tight, warm, forward 66+ minutes that play well and definitive to me. © 2016 Fulvue Drive-in Read complete review



Elliot Fisch
American Record Guide, March 2016

The overtures are very charming and undeniably alike, which works against memorability.

The performances are very good. The playing is fleet-footed or pensive when necessary, and the conductor maintains good control. © 2016 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Infodad.com, December 2015

…offers largely interchangeable music that is uniformly well-constructed, cleverly orchestrated, and highly appealing in scene-setting… The orchestra plays all nine works on this CD with enthusiasm and involvement, not seeking depths that are not there but also being careful not to turn the works into throwaways—they are too well-made to be disposed of so lightly. © 2015 Infodad.com Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, December 2015

Born in 1749, Domenico Cimarosa, together with his contemporary, Giovanni Paisiello, was the most successful and prolific Italian opera composer of his era. He ostensibly wrote some sixty ‘opera buffe’ and 20 ‘opera serie’, though commentators in recent times have questioned whether he used others, probably composing recitatives and sundry lesser tasks, in order to complete such an output. He certainly lived a very nomadic life, spending much time in Russia and Germany, where he enjoyed royal patronage, eventually getting mixed up on the wrong side of politics leading to his execution being commuted to exile in Venice where he died aged 52. Most of his Overtures were in the mode of three movement Sinfonias, and, when compared with opera buffo that were to follow in the time of Rossini, these works were serious in content. They were finely crafted orchestral works, and never less than highly pleasurable, though he did not always have the knack of finding the thematic material that would have made him famous. Today he is known for little more than the comedy, Il matrimonio segreto, a score Verdi once described as a “true musical comedy, which has everything an opera buffo should have”. Truth to tell there is nothing here that one would describe in such glowing words, though La finta Frascatana (The Fake Lady of Frascata) bubbles with good humour, the quite moments leaving us in expectation of the music to follow. Later in life his ‘overtures’ became much shorter in the style of Mozart, I finti nobili (The Fake Noblemen), being a particularly good example. Suitable in number, the Czech Chamber Philharmonic play excellently for conductor, Michael Halasz, in a well delineated recording that was seemingly made in a small location. © 2015 David’s Review Corner





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