Adagio CD by Andrew Zohn
Available on Apple Music/iTunes
- 1. Sonata K. 377
- 2. Sonata K. 47
- 3. Sonata K. 159
Suite No. 2 BWV 1008 - Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
- 4. Prelude
- 5. Allemande
- 6. Courante
- 7. Sarabande
- 8. Menuets 1 & 2
- 9. Gigue
- 10. Sonata K. 11
- 11. Sonata K. 145
- 12. Sonata K. 322
Suite for a Musical Clock - Georg Freiderich Handel (1685-1759)
- 13. Prelude HWV 598
- 14. Menuet HWV 602
- 15. Air HWV 604
- 16. Gigue HWV 599
- 17. Sonata K. 208 Domenico Scarlatti
- 18. Sonata K 209
- 19. Sonata K. 391
Tomaso Albinoni (1671-1751)
Among of the various selections contained in this recording, the common aspect connecting them all is that none were originally composed for the guitar. The modern classical guitar was at least a half-century away from being the standard plucked instrument when these composers were active, and with the exception of Bach, none have composed for the 18th century relative of the guitar, the lute. It was, however, common practice of the day for a composer or performer to transcribe music written for one instrument to another. This centuries-old tradition is continued with these selections.
The title track of this recording is derived from the Italian Tomaso Albinoni, who gained recognition in Venezia for his concerti for oboe. Ironically, his best-known work is not entirely his own. The revered “Adagio” for string orchestra, was actually conceived by Italian musicologist Remo Giazatto from a slow movement of an Albinoni trio sonata that survived the destruction of the State Library of Dresden during World War II where much of Albinoni’s work was housed.
Domenico Scarlatti, born in Napoli in 1685, was the son of well-known composer Allessandro Scarlatti. In 1720, Domenico moved to the Iberian Peninsula where he would remain for the rest of his life, first to Lisbon as Maestro of the Royal Chapel and then to Madrid as the tutor to Queen Maria Barbara. During this time, he composed over 600 sonatas for harpsichord from which the selections on this recording are taken. The Suite BWV 1008 by Johann Sebastian Bach was originally composed for unaccompanied cello, the second of six suites which he conceived for the instrument. By his own hand, one can see the justification for transcribing these works for guitar, as Bach himself transcribed the fifth of these suites for lute, a close relative of the modern guitar. This transcription gives the modern guitarist a blueprint of how Bach dealt with aspects of transcription in his works, most specifically the addition of bass notes and ornamentation. This transcription was conceived with the intent of remaining as true to the original score as possible.
Though Johann Sebastian Bach is perhaps the most familiar name today of the baroque composers, George Frederic Handel was arguably the most popular and influential composer in his day. He traveled throughout Europe, and achieved major successes in Germany, Italy, and England, where he lived from 1723 until his death in 1759. The Suite for a Musical Clock appears in a collection of student pieces known as the Aylseford manuscripts. Though it is an essential part of the young pianist’s repertoire today, this short suite was originally composed for a music box or organ operated by clockwork mechanisms. These mechanical instruments were quite fashionable among the aristocracy of Handel’s time.
American guitarist Andrew Zohn has been hailed internationally for his work as a performer, instructor, and composer. He has earned prizes in five international competitions including the Guitar Foundation of America and the Stotsenberg International. In addition to concertizing throughout North America and in Europe and South America as a soloist, Andrew Zohn is active as a chamber musician, orchestral soloist, and as a part of Duo Spiritoso with acclaimed Canadian guitarist and Naxos recording artist Jeffrey McFadden.
Since 1999, Zohn has served on the faculty of Columbus State University, where he founded and directs the annual CSU Guitar Symposium. He also currently serves on the faculty of the Guitar on the Mediterranean Festival in Cervo, Italy, and the Guitare Lachine festival in Canada, each summer. Students of Andrew Zohn have won prizes in several international competitions, and have been featured on National Public Radio. Beginning a career in composing in 1998, Zohn has received numerous commissions for new works from performing artists, music festivals, and cultural foundations. Zohn was three times selected as a recipient of a Plus Award from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) in recognition of his compositions. Classical Guitar Magazine (UK) has hailed Zohn as “…a gifted composer with something unique and interesting to say.”