Serenata Italiana

Raphaela Gromes

CD  |  Classical  |  15 Sep 2017

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Serenata Italiana | CD

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Raphaela Gromes Serenata Italiana CD

For her debut album, the outstanding young cellist Raphaela Gromes sets off on an unusual Italian journey in the company of her pianist Julian Riem. Together they explore the world of Italian chamber music, mostly from the late 19th century. Works by Martucci, Casella, Busoni, Sinigaglia and others are filled with Romanticism and passion. “The most important thing that I have associated with Italy since my childhood is opera: Rossini, Verdi, Puccini.” A self-confessed Italophile Raphaela Gromes makes no secret of her enthusiasm. But for her debut album for Sony Classical the cellist and her accompanist Julian Riem have set out to discover in greater detail the Italian cello repertory of the 19th and early 20th centuries. “Central to this new recording is Giuseppe Martucci, who is widely credited with having breathed new life into Italian chamber music,” Gromes explains. Martucci was a Wagnerian conductor and an ardent Brahmsian. The present recording features music from a period when the legacy of the Romantics overlapped with the first tentative attempts to accommodate the language of modernism, a development well illustrated by the piece that gives this release its title. In his Serenata Ferruccio Busoni deploys unusual harmonies to produce a piece that “seems to float and to create the impression of questing, of uncertainty and, as it were, of improvisation”. Alfredo Casella’s Tarantella is a high-spirited piece, while Leone Sinigaglia’s Romance and Humoresque are equally notable for their folklike tone. Sinigaglia was not only a successful musician, he was also a famous mountaineer. For Raphaela Gromes the composer Matilde Capuis, who died in January 2017 at the age of 104, represented a particular discovery. Capuis’s Animato con passione was written in 1944, towards the end of the Second World War. Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s paraphrase of Rossini’s “Largo al factotum” is a thrilling, fiery and virtuosic work which “on the one hand is in the tradition of a Lisztian paraphrase, while on the other it draws its strength from a certain tendency to wink knowingly at the listener, notably through the introduction of jazz elements”. For Raphaela Gromes and Julian Riem this recording demonstrates that even in the shadow of its great operatic composers Italy was capable of producing a whole series of magnificent chamber works, each of which is worth (re)discovering.


Title: Serenata Italiana

Format: CD

Release Date: 15 Sep 2017

Artist: Raphaela Gromes

Sku: 2349673

Catalogue No: 88985413032

Category: Classical



1. Busoni - Serenata, Op. 34, BV 196

2. Martucci - Cello Sonata in F-Sharp Minor, Op. 52: I. Allegro giusto

3. Martucci - Cello Sonata in F-Sharp Minor, Op. 52: II. Scherzo. Allegro molto - Trio. Allegretto

4. Martucci - Cello Sonata in F-Sharp Minor, Op. 52: III. Intermezzo. Andantino

5. Martucci - Cello Sonata in F-Sharp Minor, Op. 52: IV. Finale. Allegro

6. Casella - Notturno e Taraneltla, Op. 54: II. Tarantella (Allegro molto vivace)

7. Sinigaglia - 2 Stücke, Op. 16: I. Romanze (Quasi adagio)

8. Sinigaglia - 2 Stücke, Op. 16: II. Humoreske (Allegro con brio)

9. Capuis - Animato con passione

10. Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Figaro, Paraphrase on "Largo al factotum" from "Il barbiere di Siviglia": Fantasie (Allegro vivace)