Vivaldi’s Four Seasons rediscovered
with Vivaldi’s Concerto for Two Cellos
Apollo’s Fire and Jeannette Sorrell present Vivaldi’s beloved concertos as the revolutionary acts of musical storytelling they were meant to be – bringing Vivaldi’s pictorial descriptions to life. If you thought you knew the Four Seasons, be prepared for surprises! From the bird calls and storms to a barking dog, flies and wasps, drunken peasants, an exhilarating fox hunt with “gunshots,” and more… the story that Vivaldi intended with these pieces is made clear as each concerto is preceded by a quick and polished “tour” of the sound effects to come. The virtuoso musicians of Apollo’s Fire take turns stepping into the spotlight as a different soloist leads each concerto.
The program also features duelling cellists in Vivaldi’s stormy Concerto for Two Cellos. Hear why Jeannette Sorrell calls Vivaldi the “rock n’ roll composer of the 18th century!” The program can also include Jeannette Sorrell’s acclaimed arrangement of Vivaldi’s La Folia (“Madness”) which the orchestra has performed from memory at the BBC Proms, Tanglewood, the Boston Music Festival, and other venues around the world. Or another piece can be substituted.
Past appearances for this program since 2017 include the Tanglewood, Ravinia, and Gretna (PA) festivals; University of Illinois/Urbana; Penn State University, Dallas and San Antonio, TX; Walton Performing Arts Center, Fayetteville, AK.
Touring in 2020-21 to the Green Music Center, Sonoma; Vilar Performing Arts Center, Vail, CO; Calgary, Canada; and Music Institute of Chicago.
The hunting scene from “Autumn” (3rd mvt.)
Olivier Brault, violin
Hunting horns, gun-shots, and a frantically scurrying animal…!
The drunken revelry scene from “Autumn” (1st mvt)
Olivier Brault, violin
Celebrating the harvest with a bit too much Chianti… getting tipsy and eventually falling asleep
Susanna Perry Gilmore, violin
Vivaldi/arr. Sorrell – La Folia (“Madness”)
The ‘folia’ was a traditional renaissance dance that always got faster and wilder toward the end…
Vivaldi Concerto for Two Cellos
René Schiffer & Mimé Brinkmann, cello
What the Critics Say
“These excellent young musicians take a highly gestural approach to phrasing and bring across their music with an exuberant musicality, like wind through a forest. Easily one of the most enjoyable concerts of the season.”
–THE BOSTON GLOBE
“Under the inspired leadership of Jeannette Sorrell, Apollo’s Fire has become one of the pre-eminent period-instrument ensembles, causing one to hear baroque material anew.”
– THE INDEPENDENT, London (CD review – Vivaldi concertos)
“Artistic passion, inexhaustible energy… and keen musical observations that most performers probably couldn’t imagine.”
–CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER
“Superbly judged – almost brought tears to the eyes.”
–DAILY TELEGRAPH, London (BBC Proms debut, 2015)
“Electrified and sparkling. If this concert didn’t shake your rafters, then nothing will.”
–SARASOTA HERALD TRIBUNE, 2017
“Nearly every bar teemed with ideas. This was as exciting as Baroque music gets.”
–CHICAGO CLASSICAL REVIEW, 2016