Handel: The Recorder Sonatas

Handel: The Recorder Sonatas
Composer Georg Frideric Handel
Artist Erik Bosgraaf recorder
Francesco Corti harpsichord
Format 1 CD
Cat. number 93792
EAN code 5028421937922
Release December 2008

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About this release

Handel’s sonatas for recorder were composed in the years 1724–6. What is remarkable is that he found the time to concentrate on such work at a time when his operas were in great demand in London: this is the period of Scipione and Agrippina. The young composer was the toast of the town, and had become a naturalised Englishman having followed his old employer the Elector of Hanover, Georg to London. Georg became King George I, and Georg Frideric Handel became George Frederick Handel. It will come as no surprise that the sonatas contain a lot of ‘operatic’ material, from Handel’s own operas, and those of his contemporaries such as Georg Muffat. Many of the most popular arias from Handel’s operas had been published in transcriptions for recorder and keyboard – the ancestors of the operatic paraphrases by Liszt and Henselt in the 19th century.

Although they can be considered as domestic music, the keyboard parts are quite virtuosic (Handel was an excellent harpsichordist), and the composer’s markings are detailed lending credence to the view that these works were also used as exercises. Handel enthusiasts will find much that is familiar in these works, sprightly fast movements and operatic larghettos, the latter no doubt influenced by the operatic workload Handel faced at the time.

Other information:
- Recorded in 2008.
- "Bosgraaf ’s virtuosity is stunning, as is his artistry" (Gramophone, reviewing Bosgraaf recording of Van Eyck's music).
- Erik Bosgraaf has also recorded Bach and Telemann for Brilliant Classics .
- Franceso Corti studied with Bob van Asperen, and has worked with Marc Minkowski and Jordi Savall.
- Comprehensive booklet notes on each sonata, the instruments and the composer.

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Sonata in C Major, HWV 365, for Alto Recorder and Basso Continuo: Larghetto
  2. Sonata in C major (HWV 365) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Allegro
  3. Sonata in C major (HWV 365) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Larghetto
  4. Sonata in C major (HWV 365) for alto recorder and basso continuo: A tempo di Gavotta
  5. Sonata in C major (HWV 365) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Allegro
  6. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Largo
  7. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Vivace
  8. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Furioso
  9. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Adagio
  10. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Alla breve
  11. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: Andante
  12. Sonata in B minor (HWV 367a) for voice flute and basso continuo: A tempo di menuet
  13. Sonata in G minor (HWV 360) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Larghetto
  14. Sonata in G minor (HWV 360) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Andante
  15. Sonata in G minor (HWV 360) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Adagio
  16. Sonata in G minor (HWV 360) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Presto
  17. Sonata in B-flat major (HWV 377) for alto recorder* and basso continuo: Allegro
  18. Sonata in B-flat major (HWV 377) for alto recorder* and basso continuo: Adagio
  19. Sonata in B-flat major (HWV 377) for alto recorder* and basso continuo: Allegro
  20. Sonata in A minor (HWV 362) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Larghetto
  21. Sonata in A minor (HWV 362) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Allegro
  22. Sonata in A minor (HWV 362) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Adagio
  23. Sonata in A minor (HWV 362) for alto recorder and basso continuo: Allegro
  24. Sonata in D major (HWV 369) for voice flute and basso continuo: Grave
  25. Sonata in D major (HWV 369) for voice flute and basso continuo: Allegro
  26. Sonata in D major (HWV 369) for voice flute and basso continuo: Alla Siciliana
  27. Sonata in D major (HWV 369) for voice flute and basso continuo: Allegro
  28. Sonata in F major (HWV 358) for sopranino recorder and basso continuo: Allegro
  29. Sonata in F major (HWV 358) for sopranino recorder and basso continuo: Adagio
  30. Sonata in F major (HWV 358) for sopranino recorder and basso continuo: Allegro