GB Sammartini

Our rating 
2.0 out of 5 star rating 2.0

COMPOSERS: Gb Sammartini
LABELS: Naxos
ALBUM TITLE: GB Sammartini
WORKS: Il pianot degli Angeli della Pace
PERFORMER: Silvia Mapelli, Ainhoa Soraluze, Giorgio TiboniCapriccio Italiano Ensemble,Daniele Ferrari
CATALOGUE NO: 8.557432
Unlike his elder brother Giuseppe,

Advertisement

who travelled and who became

Handel’s oboist in London,

Giovanni Battista Sammartini

remained in Milan all his life.

Giovanni Battista’s style embraces

the early and mid-Classical idiom

developed in part by the Mannheim

symphonists. Indeed he played an

important part in the formation of it.

The relatively few discs of his music

that have been issued in the past have

featured mainly his chamber music

and his symphonies. Now comes

a recording, claiming with some

justification to be a world premiere,

of Sammartini’s sacred cantata Il

pianto degli Angeli della Pace (The

Tears of the Angels of Peace).

It is an attractive work with arias,

terzetti and a pleasing introductory

sinfonia. Alas, notwithstanding a

handful of strong contributions,

notably from Silvia Mapelli and

an unidentified viola player who

provides an eloquent obbligato

in her aria ‘Rasserenate il ciglio’,

the performance is rough and not

always very ready. Though the

vocal timbre of the solo tenor is

hard and somewhat unyielding the

chief culprit here is the scratchy and

seemingly under-prepared chamber

orchestra; indeed a passage in the

above-mentioned aria is so ill-tuned

and ragged that I am astonished

it was not rectified. A pity, since

Sammartini’s cantata is well worth

the interest that these artists have

taken in reviving it, the three

extended arias being of particular

merit. The Symphony appended to

the main work fares only marginally

Advertisement

better. Nicholas Anderson