VALENTI Scarlatti: Harpsichord Sonatas, Vol. 10 (1955) - PAKM026

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VALENTI Scarlatti: Harpsichord Sonatas, Vol. 10 (1955) - PAKM026

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SCARLATTI 12 Harpsichord Sonatas, Vol. 10

Recorded May, 1955
Duration 38:54

Fernando Valenti, harpsichord

This set contains the following albums:

Valenti's monumental Scarlatti series, Vol. 10

Excellent transfers for Pristine by Peter Harrison

Domenico Scarlatti's canon of 555 keyboard sonatas is one of the great collections of classical music, and one that we have already visited with the Scarlatti Society recordings of the 1930's by Wanda Landowska (PAKM004).

In 1951 Fernando Valenti and the Westminster Recording Company of New York began work on an ambitious project, to record the entire set for the newly emergent long-playing record. Although the project ultimately ran to about two dozen records, alas it was never completed, with only about half of the sonatas making it onto LP.

The first six of these LPs are being lovingly remastered from the original vinyl by Peter Harrison at disk2disc as a six-month series for Pristine Audio Direct to run from January to June, 2006.

Here we present volume one, as originally released though with the newer Kirkpatrick numbering system also noted - Ralph Kirkpatrick had earlier encouraged Valenti to study the harpsichord, but at the time of this recording had yet to finish his complete listing of Domenico Scarlatti's music, which was to come with his critical edition of 1953.

Of Valenti, his obituary in National Review noted: ""Valenti was to Scarlatti as Artur Schnabel was to Beethoven. Just as Schnabel was this century's greatest interpreter of Beethoven, so Valenti was our time's definitive exponent of Scarlatti." So said Thomas Wendel, professor of history, San Jose State. And Tom Wendel went on to say, on hearing that Fernando Valenti had died in a taxicab en route from Kennedy Airport to his sister's house in New Jersey, "Valenti's personality mirrored Scarlatti's music: humorous, versatile, mercurial, jocular; and at base, profound.""

Valenti had achieved a number of 'firsts' by the time of this recording (made when still in his twenties) - the first harpsichordist to have recorded a film soundtrack, the first to have appeared on television and the first to appear in a Broadway show. Many critics feel that these first mono recordings for Westminster in the early 1950's are perhaps the best of his career, particularly the best of his Scarlatti.

Andrew Rose

  • Sonata in A minor - L. 140, Kk. 341 (2'14")
  • Sonata in D major - L. 109, Kk. 436 (2'54")
  • Sonata in G major - L. 349, Kk. 146 (2'38")
  • Sonata in E major - L. 21, Kk. 162 (5'48")
  • Sonata in C major - L. 255, Kk. 515 (3'22")
  • Sonata in D minor - L. 266, Kk. 517 (3'10")
  • Sonata in E minor - L. 22, Kk. 198 (2'29")
  • Sonata in G major - L. 288, Kk. 432 (2'15")
  • Sonata in D major - L. 308, Kk. 237 (2'53")
  • Sonata in G minor - L. 13, Kk. 60 (2'57")
  • Sonata in C major - L. 5, Kk. 406 (3'35")
  • Sonata in C minor - L. 356, Kk. 56 (4'39")

Recorded May, 1955, released as Westminster LP 18068
Duration 38:54

Fernando Valenti, harpsichord

Pristine's Review