Album: Lisa Smirnova, Handel: Die Acht Grossen Suiten (ECM New Series)

 

The diversity of Handel's works, especially popular ones such as the Messiah, Royal Fireworks and Water Music, has tended to overshadow his keyboard compositions. T

These are few in number, compared to the output of his contemporary JS Bach - yet in their era, Handel's were the more widely disseminated and performed, a reflection, perhaps, of his "mixed goût" synthesis of European styles. He shared with Bach, however, the habit of recycling sections from his earlier works. Lisa Smirnova here performs the so-called "Eight London Suites" with great sensitivity and poise - the first movement of the Suite No. 2 opens with the most startlingly delicate of trills - and subtle differentiation between the various Gigues, Allemandes, Courantes and Sarabandes whose abundance reflects the suites' origins in contemporary dance forms. 

Download this: Suite No. 2; Suite No. 4; Suite No. 7

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