A Medieval Florentine Garden

Firenze 1350
A Medieval Florentine Garden
Sollazzo Ensemble - Anna Danilevskaia
Editions Ambronay 055

This is yet another wonderful program of Trecento music, apparently highlighting the mid-century (by title), but not seeming to be too bound by specific decade. There are many enjoyable items here, but the program is (of course) yet another mixing of a variety of composers & styles. (And in this case, that includes some sacred music as well — ranging from being based on the secular songs to more farther afield....) So, the program itself is not really revelatory, but does present an updated look at technique, etc.

And the technique & interpretation here are indeed excellent, apparently building on previous Trecento recordings by the Danilevski's more broadly.... For those (prior) items, I'd noted: "The performance is both cogent and nicely expressive. There is a good variety of instrumentation, used sensitively to enhance the vocal lines, or at times in an instrumental rendition." This interpretation continues to bring even more sophistication technically, including to instrument manufacture, and brings a fine energy — from this relatively young ensemble — as well. They are also especially adept at creating e.g. senses of space — expansiveness even — based on close attention to mensuration, etc., in addition to generating a wonderful range of tone colors.

Even as a mixed program, the result is easy to enjoy & to recommend. In particular, the potency of the program seems to be expressed with relatively little sense of nostalgia (as sometimes creeps into such productions...). In this, it appears to be the fruit of musicians who grew up with this repertory.

To medieval secular list

Todd M. McComb
Updated: 20 April 2020