"If you like a thin style of baroque singing, then this is a beautiful CD."Luister, 19-7-2019
Marco Vitale was born in Palermo (Italy) in 1980.
He studied piano, organ, harpsichord and composition at Palermo’s “V. Bellini” Conservatory, where he took the piano diploma in 2001 and the organ diploma in 2002 with full marks and “Cum Laude”.
He took part in many international master-classes where he developed his skills and taste for baroque music. His concert life began at age of 15, with performances as a soloist and chamber musician. In 2002 he moved to The Netherlands where he studied at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague.
He took a Bachelor’s degree in organ with Jos van der Kooy and a Master in Early Music (harpsichord) with Ton Koopman.
His musical activity brought him to play in the most prestigious venues and festivals in Europe, USA, Canada and Middle East as a soloist/continuo player or director of his Contrasto Armonico.
Marco Vitale is the co-founder and musical director of “Contrasto Armonico”, baroque orchestra specialized in the performance of music in Italian style and baroque operas, using original instruments and historical performance practices. He is currently involved in the recordings of the Complete Italian Cantatas by Handel (formerly on Brilliant Classics, now on ayros), a thrilling project that will bring light on many undiscovered jewels of Handel which are neither edited nor recorded.
He appeared in radio and TV broadcasts in Netherlands (AVRO), Germany, Austria (ORF), Spain, Poland (Polskie Radio), Italy (RAI), UK (BBC) and Syria (Syrian National Television), and he participated in recordings for Alia Vox (Rameau, L’Orchestre de Louis XV), and Naïve (Vivaldi’s Teuzzone).
In 2012 he founded his own records label ‘ayros’, featuring recordings of Contrasto Armonico, with whom is continuing the project of Handel Complete Cantatas and starting new thrilling discographic projects. In addition to performing with Contrasto Armonico he also gives master-classes about baroque music throughout Europe and Middle East. From 2008 till 2011 he worked at the Higher Institute of Music of Damascus (Syria) for an early music development project.
In 2018 he composed an opera in 17th century style, with the title of “Il ratto di Helena” on a libretto by Virgilio Puccitelli (1636). The opera was commissioned by the Palace of Grandukes of Lithuania, and performed in Vilnius in occasion of the 100 years of Lithuanian independence.
He regularly performs with Jordi Savall, ‘Le Concert des Nations & Hesperion XXI and worked as a guest conductor at Warsaw Chamber Opera.
Georg Frideric Handel was a composer from the Baroque period. Handel wrote primarily music-dramatic works: 42 operas, 29 oratorios, more than 120 cantatas, trios and duets, which comes to a total amount of almost 2000 arias! Furthermore, he composed English, Italian and Latin sacred music, serenades and odes. Among his instrumental music are several organ concertos, concerti grossi, overtures, oboe sonatas and violinsonates, along with many solo works for harpsichord and organ.
Together with Johann Sebastian Bach, who was born in the same year (1685), Handel is viewed as one of the greatest composers of his time. He was extremely prolific and wrote in total more than 610 works, many of which are still performed today.
Compared to his contemporaries Bach, Telemann and Scarlatti, Handel was by far the most cosmopolitan. When Handel was a child, his father, who was a surgeon at the court of Saxe-Weissenfels, imagined a juridical career for him. But his musical talents did not go unnoticed at the court, which forced the father to let him study music. In Hamburg, Handel befriended Mattheson. Together they visited Buxtehude, the greatest organ player of his time, in 1703 (two years before Bach did). At that time, Handel was already an excellent musician, but it wasn't until his stay in Italy - the land of opera - that his talents and skills truly started to flourish. Back in Germany, he received a position at the court of Hannover, where the noblemen had a connection to the British throne. Thanks to these connections, Handel decided to move to London, after which a puzzling history of intrigues and political games started. For example, it is unclear what the exact political message of his famous Water Music is, which was composed for a boat ride on the river Thames by King George. Initially, Handel focused on Italian opera during his stay in London, but from the 1730s onwards he started composing English spoken oratorios, with the celebrated Messiah at its peak.
If you like a thin style of baroque singing, then this is a beautiful CD.
"Contrasto Armonico" records Handel's complete, Italian cantatas, magnificent compositions with instrumental accompaniment by an ensemble, or only with basso continuo. An ambitious project from Ayros.