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Among the 555 keyboard sonatas written by the great Italian composer Scarlatti are just a handful for the sweet, singing little Italian organ. There is some dispute about the first of this group, but played on a gedackt (flute) stop it beautifully suggests the turtledove, which is its nickname; a gently cooing figure charmingly alludes to the dove’s call. The remaining two were written for an organ with one complete manual and a second keyboard restricted to treble only. K 287 asks for the tromboncini – a buzzing little reed stop.

Program notes © 2009, Dame Gillian Weir