Fasolo: Magnificat, Salve Regina, Ricercates

Federico Del Sordo organ/harpsichord, In Dulci Jubilo, dir. Alberto Turco
128:34 (2 CDs in a case)
Brilliant Classics 95512

The music on these two CDs is taken from the huge compendium of organ music for liturgical use, the Annuale by Giovanni Battista Fasolo, now thought to have been published before 1635 and so to have influenced a number of similar publications. Sometimes in alternatim with the women’s choir In Dulci Jubilo, Alberto Turco plays the splendid 1589 Antegnati organ in Verona Cathedral and the equally fine 1509 Montefalco organ at Trevi, which survived renovation in the 18th century to be restored in the 20th and is probably the oldest working organ in the world. Both instruments have a striking immediacy and pungency, partly due to their authentic tuning and their extreme age, but they are marvellously evocative in their accounts of Fasolo’s music. Full details of the registrations Father Turco uses are provided, which will be appreciated by organ fans, but these are CDs which will appeal beyond the limited world of organists. The music is tremendously evocative of the age in which it was produced, and by using these venerable instruments Alberto Turco brings it vividly to life. A few of the pieces are played on harpsichord as it is argued that during Lent this instrument may well have stood in for the organ, although curiously the harpsichord pieces are recorded in an altogether closer acoustic. In any case, the two historic organs remain the stars of these informative CDs.

D. James Ross

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  • Performance
  • Recorded sound
  • Booklet notes
  • Overall presentation
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