L.v. BEETHOVEN: Overture Zur Namensfeier, op. 115
G.F. HÄNDEL: Music for the Royal Fireworks, HWV 351
L.v. BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 1, in C major, op. 21
Orquestra Simfònica Camera Musicae
Rinaldo Alessandrini, conductor
Zur Namensfeier was meant to celebrate the Saint of Emperor Francis I (October 4 is Saint Francis of Assisi) of 1814 but Beethoven did not finish it on time and it was released in the December. Nevertheless the work maintained the festive rhythm, the lyrical melodies and the sumptuous character of what had to be commemorated.
Händel had finished his work on time (April 1749), despite having accepted the commission with pessimism. He even had the good fortune to listen to the five complete movements in the general rehearsal on the day that the wooden building was inaugurated, with music and fireworks. It was commissioned by George II of Great Britain to celebrate the signing of the Treaty of Aix la-Chapelle, but disastrously everything was destroyed in a fire. It isn’t something that will happen this time because Rinaldo Alessandrini’s three decades of experience has fire it’s in the form of applause. Some did not understand Beethoven the day he premiered his First Symphony (1800), as critics considered it was a bad mix of Mozart and Haydn symphonies with a modernity that was not very recognisable in the very fast tempos and harmonious novelties.
Critics are not always right.
Biography Rinaldo Alessandrini
In addition to his activities as Founder-Director of Concerto Italiano, Rinaldo Alessandrini is renowned as a conductor and recitalist on the harpsichord, fortepiano and organ. He is considered one of the most authoritative interpreters of Monteverdi worldwide, and has a profound knowledge and love of the Italian repertoire naturally reflected in programmes reproducing the essential, but often elusive, expressive and cantabile elements so fundamental to Italian music of the 17th and 18th centuries.
Rinaldo has performed in Japan, Canada, USA, and throughout Europe, and is in increasing demand to direct leading international orchestras. Recent engagements as an opera conductor include Handel’s “Orlando” in Cardiff with the Welsh National Opera, and in Dresden; Purcell’s “Fairy Queen” at Berlin Philharmonie; Mozart’s“La finta semplice” in Munich; Gluck’s “Orfeo” and Mozart’s “Figaro” in Oslo as well as Mozart’s “Don Giovanni”in Liege.
He also recently presented the complete Monteverdi opera cycle at La Scala, directed by Bob Wilson. Rinaldo Alessandrini and Concerto Italiano celebrate the 450th anniversary of Monteverdi, with tours to China, Hong Kong, Australia, Japan and the USA.
His recordings (Opus 111, Astrèe, Arcana, Deutsche, harmonia mundi) include not only Italian music, but Bach and his contemporaries. Rinaldo has garnered the highest critical acclaim, including 5 Gramophone Awards, 2 Grand Prix du Disque, 3 Deutscher Schallplattenpreis, Prix Caecilia, the PremioCini and 4 Midem Awards in Cannes.
Rinaldo Alessandrini was nominated Chevalier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture, and together with Concerto Italiano was awarded the Italian music critics’ prestigious Premio Abbiati. He was editor for Baerenreiter’s editions of Monteverdi’s Orfeo and Ulisse.