550 sonát Domenica Scarlattiho

Download masterly piano miniatures for free! The new long-term project of Czech Radio D-dur will gradually offer the complete works of Domenico Scarlatti.
Apart from the possibility to download the sonatas in mp3 and flac formats, the interactive web page allows you to suggest titles for the sonatas and attach moods and descriptions to the pieces. Recordings can then be easily filtered by mood, tempo and difficulty. Editors will select the best sonata titles and use them to name the pieces on the web.
Scarlatti’s sonatas lead a player through the technical difficulties of fast sections, thirds, sixths, octaves, arpeggios, jumps, repeated notes, chains of embellishments etc. At the same time they present the beauty of the instrument they try to master. Scarlatti does this with elegance, often with humour – it is he who is the author of the famous Cat fugue. He is said to have composed it on a theme that his pet cat “suggested” to him by running across the keyboard...
Scarlatti designated his sonatas for cembalo, it was not possible to do otherwise in his times. Later they became one of the pillars of most cembalo players’ repertoire. Pianists have been left out – historically informed interpretation has sidetracked their instrument. For a long time, playing Scarlatti on a piano has been considered inauthentic.
Now is the time to return Scarlatti to piano players, or rather – help them rediscover him. In the following years we intend to record the complete set of his sonatas played on piano. We would like these pieces to discard the present narrow confines – at the moment they are part of the syllabus at conservatories and music academies, but they only play a part of the encore at concerts. An effective one, but still “only” an encore. We believe that they could gradually invigorate concert programmes that are endlessly repeated and we hope that in the course of time, some of the approached interpreters will make them part of their stable repertoire.
There are a total of 550 sonatas, thus the project will last several years. Some of the approached musicians have sent us an outlook for the future – they will record in several stages. The proposals are gradually piling up, already some sonatas need to be refused because they will have been recorded twice and everyone understands. The players who put them in their proposal first are given precedence. As there are several hundreds of the sonatas it has always been possible to find others that have not been “reserved” yet.
Vladimíra Lukařová