Inspired by a broad range of musical genres that span classical, Latin, jazz and traditional folkloric music from his native Brazil, Raimundo Penaforte has appeared nationally and internationally as a composer and performer.
The Valerius Ensemble a revelation in music
The Valerius ensemble, founded in 1988, is a chamber music ensemble based around a group of musicians most of whom are also members of The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra. The ensemble present more than 25 chamber music concerts a year. Depending on the programme the number of musicians performing per concert varies from two to nine or even more. With its annual series of six chamber music concerts on Sunday afternoons, the ensemble plays a significant role in the programming at the Music Centre in Enschede, Netherlands.
Total time: 01:08:28
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|Release Date||September 9, 2015|
“Raimundo Penaforte is said to be “one of the most creative and captivating Brazilian musicians of his generation”. As a conductor, composer and instrumentalist he has appeared at concerts in Europe, Canada, Japan, Brazil and the United States at such venues as Lincoln Centre, The White House and The Kennedy Centre. His idiom embraces classical, Latin, jazz and Brazilian folk. The recording represents the fruits of Penaforte’s recent collaboration with the very fine Netherlands Valerius Ensemble, who are mostly members of The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra. The Ensemble’s pianist on this occasion is concert recitalist Francesco Schlimé, and Peneforte’s programme choice was partly inspired by the pianist’s presence at the sessions. Reciprocally, the members of the Ensemble were evidently galvanised by their interaction with Peneforte, who also plays percussion on several tracks. The programme itself represents some of his compositions and arrangements from the last few decades. I have nothing but praise for the realism of Jos Boerland’s production and engineering of this disc. Even after years of listening to high definition surround sound, one can still get a thrill even at the first notes of a record, and the resonant growl of Schlimé’s piano in the airy Johanneskerk, Twekkelo (Netherlands) provided me with this. The recording is fairly close – no inappropriate churchiness from the acoustic – and places the instrumentalists in one’s listening room most convincingly, with lively surrounds giving great front-to-back perspective. It is fascinating listening to the purity of the instrumental timbres, especially the sound of the ideally balanced string quartet, its cello having rich tone without the double-bass-like overemphasis offered in many other recordings. Recommended for Penaforte fans of course, and for those interested in contemporary chamber music.
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