Corelli: Concerti Grossi Op. 6

Genesis Baroque, Sophie Gent, Lucinda Moon

Corelli: Concerti Grossi Op. 6
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Corelli: Concerti Grossi Op. 6

Genesis Baroque, Sophie Gent, Lucinda Moon

A disc of debuts for Melbourne’s new kids on the Baroque.

“Sumptuous and refined…Genesis Baroque is a unique and polished - and importantly, welcome - voice in the vibrant Melbourne Baroque music scene.” - CutCommon

Arcangelo Corelli is one of the great composers of the Baroque era, a trailblazer who forever changed the relationship between soloist and orchestra, and did much to establish the violin as the star of the orchestra. He is considered the ‘father’ of the concerto grosso - a piece for several soloists accompanied by an orchestra - and his seminal Opus 6 volume became the benchmark for his contemporaries, including Handel, Vivaldi and Geminiani.

Here, one of Melbourne’s premier early music ensembles, Genesis Baroque, brings these extraordinary works to life with great energy and enthusiasm. Adding to the uniqueness of the occasion, not only is this the ensemble’s first studio recording, but it is also the first complete recording of these works by an Australian orchestra.

In this recording, the ensemble is led by consummate expatriate violinist Sophie Gent, who returned to Australia for the first time in many years to perform with Lucinda Moon as co-directors and soloists. Both musicians are notable for their nuanced, elegant approach and creative flair, and will enchant listeners through the sublime colours and conversations of Corelli’s masterworks.  


An optimistic young wanderer happens upon a brook, which leads him to a mill, and in turn to the beautiful millers daughter – ‘die schöne mullerin’. He falls in love, but the girl’s heart belongs to another. In despair, the wanderer returns to the brook, where he drowns himself. This narrative formed the basis of Schubert’s 1823 song cycle Die Schöne Mullerin, the performance of which has become a right of passage for many a tenor and baritone.

For the last decade, tenor Christoph Pregardién’s 1992 Die Schöne Mullerin has been my recording of choice – I greatly admire his interpretation, and I rarely listen to others.

Enter baritone David Greco and keyboardist Erin Helyard. Die Schöne Mullerin sounds entirely different when performed by a baritone – the young wanderer is less a naïf and closer to the troubled protagonist of Winterreise – but such a voice lends depth to the cycle.

Unusually, Greco and Helyard add their own impressions on Schubert’s music in the form of variations during strophic songs, and frequent embellishments. Helyard additionally performs Schubert’s Impromptu in G-flat major, marking the wanderer’s turn from enamoured to lovelorn. Both give exquisite and compelling performances, worthy of acclaim. Move over Prégardian.

Alexandra Mathew is a classical music specialist at Readings Carlton.

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