Sunday Baroque Holiday Gift List

Sunday Baroque gift list


Every year at this time, I create a list of suggestions for holiday gift giving. Starting November 20th and continuing through December, you can audition some of my recommendations from the annual Sunday Baroque Holiday Gift list.  All of us at Sunday Baroque wish you and yours a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season filled with laughter, peace and an abundance of good music!

Sunday Baroque Holiday Gift List 2016



Sono Luminus DSL-92203

Ayreheart is a quartet whose repertory is eclectic, and this 2016 release features renaissance music by John Dowland and William Byrd alongside traditional folk songs, performed on lutes and voice. Ronn McFarlane (lute), Brian Kay (lute, guitar and voice), Will Morris (colascione, violin, mandolin) and Mattias Rucht (percussion) are the core members of Ayreheart. A spirited and fresh take on some appealing tunes.


Luc Beausejour – piano 

Analekta AN 2 9128

Luc Beausejour is an expert harpsichordist and organist, but this recording features his performances of baroque music on piano. He selected music that was most appealing to him personally and seemed to work best on piano. The collection includes music by JS Bach, D. Scarlatti, Handel, F. Couperin, Rameau, and H. Purcell. Beausejour brings his knowledge and sensitivity to historic performance practice to these modern instrument presentations.


National Arts Center Orchestra of Canada, Pinchas Zukerman

Analekta AN2 8783

This is a nice sample of some familiar baroque music played on modern instruments. It opens with Handel’s zippy Arrival of the Queen of Sheba, and includes JS Bach’s beloved Orchestral Suite #3 and Concerto in c for oboe and violin, among other works. An appealing and enjoyable sampler collection!


Tempesta di Mare

Chaconne CHAN 0810

Orchestral music for the theatre by Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Jean-Philippe Rameau and Jean-Marie Leclair. The Philadelphia ensemble Tempesta di Mare is a topnotch group known for superlative playing and imaginative programming. They breathe new life into undeservedly neglected music and composers, and this recording is another terrific example of their fine work.



John Schneiderman – lute, Jeffrey Cohan – flute, William Skeen – cello

Hanssler Classic HC 15048

A lovely chamber music collection of interesting repertory by Adam Falckenhagen, who worked for Princess Wilhemine. (sister of King Frederick the Great of Prussia)  Light and pretty, this is less well-known music that deserves to be heard.



Four Nations Ensemble

Orchid Classics 100049

Four Nations Ensemble is comprised of cellist Loretta O’Sullivan, harpsichordist Andrew Appel and continuo cellist Beiliang Zhu. Italian violinist and composer Francesco Geminiani published six Cello Sonatas in 1746 in Paris, at a time when the viola da gamba’s popularity was waning, and the cello was on the ascent as a solo instrument. These imaginative Sonatas are beautifully played by the excellent Four Nations Ensemble.



Erik Bosgraaf – recorder, Ensemble Cordevento

Brilliant Classics 95249

Georg Philipp Telemann was a multi-talented musician who was skilled at playing several instruments. He was particularly talented on recorder, and this new recording features a virtuoso recorder player collaborating with other instrumentalists to play Telemann’s double concertos for recorder. These are fine performances of interesting repertory.



Giuliano Carmignola – violin, Amandine Beyer – violin, Gli Incogniti

Harmonia Mundi HMC 902249

Antonio Vivaldi was a fantastic violin player, and he composed many Concertos featuring his instrument. Two outstanding baroque violin players – Giuliano Carmignola and Amandine Beyer – teamed up to play seven of Vivaldi’s Concertos for Two Violins. The expert interplay between soloists and ensemble offers double the rhythmic drive and energy, and double the artistry.



John Bullard – banjo, Various musicians

Bullard Music JB100

And now for something completely different! John Bullard shows the expressive, classical side of the banjo playing music by baroque composers A. Marcello, Telemann, Handel, and JS Bach, as well as music by Schumann and Grieg.  He assembled a topnotch ensemble to present lovely and respectful transcriptions of familiar music including JESU, JOY OF MAN’S DESIRING, and Marcello’s OBOE CONCERTO IN D MINOR. This is great introduction to the classical tradition for a novice, and fun for someone who knows the repertory well and appreciates a fresh take.


7 comments on “Sunday Baroque Holiday Gift List

  1. Barbara Kovacevic on

    A few weeks ago you played Vivaldi’s Cello Sonata #5. Is it on any of your “gifts”? It is a marvelous piece of music but I cannot find an available recording. I love your program; thanks for broadcasting it.

  2. Suzanne Bona on

    That particular recording is not on the gift list — I try to choose recent recordings that are readily available. We have these recordings of Vivaldi’s Cello Sonatas in the Sunday Baroque library, and perhaps you will be able to locate one for purchase: ASV 201 (Anthony Pleeth); Hyperion 66881/2 (David Watkin); Alpha 902 (Bruno Cocset); Naive Ambroise 9992 (Ophelie Gaillard). Thanks for your interest!

    • Suzanne Bona on

      Thank you! So glad you enjoyed the program! We are not legally permitted to distribute the music we use on the program because we do not own the rights to the recordings; they are all on commercial CDs and the performers and recording labels are protected by law. However, you can certainly use the printed playlist we provide to research and purchase any of the individual recordings used on that show. All the information you need is there: record label and catalogue number. I hope this helps!

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