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Jerry Dubins
Fanfare, April 2018

The barely five-year-old Orchestra Nuove Assonanze was created in 2013 by Alan Freiles Magnatta, its artistic director and principal conductor. The ensemble is made up of young orchestral musicians, augmented by experienced professionals. Performances and recording are top-notch. © 2018 Fanfare  Read complete review



Ralph Graves
WTJU, January 2018

Gaetano Pugnani was one of the most brilliant violinists of his age. At age ten he joined the Royal Chapel of Turin—as first violinist. And his career just kept getting better.

Pugnani’s concertos are written a light, transparent Galant style. His music sounds similar to that of Johann Christian Bach and Carl Abel (he worked with both). The solo violin part has plenty to do. But there’s more to this music than just fireworks.

In order to do Pugnani’s music justice, his melodies should be played with sensitivity, expressiveness, and sometimes simplicity. Violinist Roberto Noferini has made a study of Pugnani’s concertos. His playing shows a real affinity with the music. And something more.

The cadenzas on this recording are all improvised. Noferini has some completely absorbed the music that he could improvise in the style of Pugnani.

And it works. Just listening to the music I didn’t hear anything that sounded out of place or anachronistic. And although Noferini’s cadenzas stay true to the style, they also work with the material in interesting ways.

This is fine music-making indeed. © 2018 WTJU Read complete review



Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb International, January 2018

Pugnani’s writing was adventurous. He wasn’t afraid to take the soloist high, nor did he stint virtuosic passagework. Above all, he was a real melodist, and one predicated on vocalised cantabile. All this makes for delightful and rewarding listening. The D major is graced with an avuncular orchestration that launches the soloist’s silvery passagework; clever, clean, clear and formally accomplished. There’s a fine orchestral lurch into the first movement cadenza, which is the work of soloist Roberto Noferini. With a beautifully poised slow movement, with the soloist singing over an expressive orchestral cushion, one relaxes into the luxury of a bel canto few minutes before the orchestra suddenly and surprisngly breaks into pizzicati, driving the soloist into still more operatic richness. © 2018 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Records International, January 2018

As a violinist Pugnani was famous for his sensitivity and cantabile phrasing while demanding stratospheric virtuosity unusual for the time, the former evident in the alllegro maestoso first movements and the slow second movements and the latter on display in the finales (allegro brillante and rondo andantino—no blinding speed for this composer!). … © 2018 Records International Read complete review





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