Salvatore Di Vittorio: Overtura Respighiana; Sinfonia No. 2 'Lost Innocence'; Ave Maria; Sinfonia No. 1 'Isolation' &

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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/26/2011
  • Label: Naxos
  • UPC: 747313233373
  • Catalog Number: 8572333
  • Sales rank: 353,009

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Chamber Orchestra of New York Ensemble
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  • Posted August 29, 2011

    Homage to Respighi very enjoyable

    Credit Naxos again for reaching out and finding new, unusual and eclectic composers to feature in their 21st Century Classics series. I have heard many of the landmark American composers series and a several of the Spanish composer series. The new disc featuring music by Salvatore Di Vittorio is the first of the Italian classics I have heard as well as the first I have ever heard of Mr. Di Vittorio. Salvatore Di Vittorio, born in 1967 in Palermo, is actually American trained (at the Manhattan School of Music) and primarily as a conductor. His music as well as the name of his ensemble clearly owes a stylistic debt to his "hero" Ottorino Respighi. The works on this disc are all very nicely constructed and come with some mixed results. The brief "Overture 'Respighiana'" is exactly what is sounds like; a short, sweet and attractive melange of some Respighi-like melodies. There are bit of "Pines of Rome", "La Boutique Fantasque" (which, in turn, is after Rossini) as well as some quotes from some other works by Di Vittorio. It is colorful and brief but not as memorable as the other works on the disc. Two other short and very different works stand our for their singularity within this collection. Di Vittorio's "Ave Maria" for female chorus is a poignant and dramatic setting of the familiar text. The sound is interesting in that is predictably very pretty in places and nearly strident in others; the work does leave mixed feelings but is a very interesting piece. The "Sonata #1 for Clarinet" is a very interesting three movement work filled with surprises. Soloist Benjamin Baron does a very nice job in this piece that is quite lyrical but with a jaunty, even unexpected finale. The two major works on this disc are Di Vittorio's "Sinfonia #1" from 1998 and his "Sinfonia #2" from 2000. Of the two works, I found #1 to be a more compelling piece. Subtitled, "Isolation", this work for string orchestra is indeed very plaintive and beautiful in places; the second movement 'Fantasia' is particularly effective. The "Sinfonia #2 'Lost Innocence'" is also a very nice, built on themes from several ethnic cultures affected by the Yugoslavian civil war of the mid 1990s. I enjoyed the work but found the net effect not as emotionally string as that in the first Sinfonia. I think that Salvatore Di Vittorio is an interesting composer with some clear artistic connections to his homeland. I certainly enjoyed the "Clarinet Sonata" and the first "Sinfonia" on this collection and would welcome the chance to hear more of Salvatore Di Vittorio's music.

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