Scottish Chamber Orchestra

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Maxwell Davies: An Orkney Wedding & other works

Maxwell Davies: An Orkney Wedding & other works


Davies, Peter Maxwell:

Concert Overture - Ebb Of Winter

Hill Runes

Last Door Of Light

Farewell to Stromness

An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise


Sean Shibe (guitar)

Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Ben Gernon

The Scottish Chamber Orchestra and guitarist Sean Shibe join in a celebration of the life and works of the orchestra's much-loved Composer Laureate, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies.

“a worthy and deeply felt portrait of Max’s Orkney...The SCO and Ben Gernon are totally committed; guitarist Sean Shibe adds the tiny Hill Runes and the ever touching, ever so simple Farewell to Stromness.” The Guardian, 4th September 2016 ****

“this disc affords a fond farewell to the composer and the musical realisation of his adopted Orkney...And the idea behind the title piece, bagpipes at daybreak, again proves itself unbeatable.” Sunday Times, 11th September 2016

“[Maxwell Davies’s] long and fruitful association with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra included a previous recording of the Orkney Wedding, but Linn’s engineering is superior and crucially places Robert Jorgan’s climactic bagpipe solo towards centre stage. Ben Gernon secures playing of even greater spirit and accuracy than the composer, replete with shouts of glee” Gramophone Magazine, October 2016

“Aficionados will not mind hearing, yet again, those trademark Maxwell Davies devices of whooping horn glissandos and hyperactive chattering trumpets, especially when delivered with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s bombproof expertise; and Ben Gernon’s conducting of both works is forthright and immaculate” BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2016 ****

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Peter Maxwell Davies: Into the Labyrinth

Peter Maxwell Davies: Into the Labyrinth


Davies, Peter Maxwell:

Into the Labyrinth, Op. 111

Neil Mackie (tenor)

Sinfonietta Academica


The second of a set of three works for chamber orchestra written in 1983, and the only one using voice, 'Into the Labyrinth' was written for Neil Mackie and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and first performed by them at the St. Magnus Festival, in the Cathedral, Kirkwall, in June 1983, under the baton of James Conlon. This Unicorn reissue is the only recording currently available. The symphonic song-cycle in five continuous movements ponders the influence of modern times on ancient ways of life, with words from 'The Well' by George Mackay Brown.

The other works in the trilogy are 'Sinfonia Concertante' and 'Sinfonietta Academica': the latter recorded here was written by Maxwell Davies in 1983 for the quartercentenary of Edinburgh University. The first performance was given by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra conducted by Edward Harper in October 1983.

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Stravinsky: Choral Works

Stravinsky: Choral Works


Stravinsky:

Mass

Ave Maria

Pater Noster

Credo

Cantata

Tres sacrae cantiones (after Gesualdo)


Ruby Hughes (soprano) & Nicholas Mulroy (tenor)

Choir of St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh & Scottish Chamber Orchestra Soloists, Duncan Ferguson

Since taking the helm of the St Mary’s choir in Edinburgh, Duncan Ferguson has directed them in four composer-led recording projects – featuring Taverner, John Sheppard, Bruckner and Gabriel Jackson. Every one of these discs has attracted editors’ choices from one or more specialist classical magazines. Now, in Ferguson’s most ambitious project to date, the choir are joined by players from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and vocal soloists Ruby Hughes and Nicholas Mulroy to record major works by the twentieth century’s most influential composer. The choir rarely get to perform Stravinsky’s Mass in its full version with wind instruments accompanying rather than organ (‘We love it!’ proclaimed the choristers), while a performance of the Cantata with cathedral choristers rather than an adult choir is rare indeed. Also included are Stravinsky’s ‘completions’ of three cantiones sacrae by Gesualdo; their weird contrapuntal twists and turns are relished by this intelligent, committed choir, and provide a stark contrast to the austere simplicity of Stravinsky’s own short sacred choruses. Gabriel Jackson provides the illuminating accompanying essay.

“Edinburgh's mixed cathedral choir bring vernal freshness to the cantata.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2016

“The choir sounds fresh and lively, thoroughly relishing Stravinsky’s angular vocal writing, while the SCO Soloists are no less engaged. Ferguson finds exactly the right tempi and a slightly detached level of expression…he is fortunate to have two fine soloists in Ruby Hughes and Nicholas Mulroy for Cantata…to round off their satisfying programme, Ferguson and his Edinburgh choir give an exemplary account of Tres sacrae cantiones…highly recommended.” Choir & Organ, September 2016

“Beautifully sung and blessed with outstandingly vivid recorded sound. We are brought close to the performers in an attractively resonant space, the best of both worlds for religious or quasi-religious fare in which clarity matters as much as atmosphere.” Gramophone Magazine, October 2016

“The Choir of St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh, give a youthful spin on the monochrome Mass.” Mail on Sunday, September 2016

“This disc shows off a choir of distinction. Their fresh, youthful sound (there are girl as well as boy choristers) lends colour to the studious dourness of Stravinsky’s deliberately monochrome Mass (1948) and Cantata (1952) on medieval English texts.” Sunday Times, 21st August 2016

“The real pleasure is in the choral sound, the Edinburgh boys alternately euphonious and pungent... Essential listening, good sleeve art and handsomely recorded.” The Arts Desk, September 2016

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Schumann & Mendelssohn: Piano Concertos

Schumann & Mendelssohn: Piano Concertos


Mendelssohn:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 25

Ingrid Fliter (piano)

The Fair Melusine Overture, Op. 32

Schumann:

Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54

Ingrid Fliter (piano)


Ingrid Fliter is set to thrill her fans with a new recording of piano concertos; eagerly awaited since her acclaimed recording of Chopin 1 & 2, which saw Fliter nominated for a Gramophone Award.

Fliter performs repertoire that is very close to her heart: concertos by two nineteenth century heavyweights, Schumann and Mendelssohn.

Fliter brings the lyrical romanticism of Schumann’s iconic Piano Concerto to life whilst perfectly navigating the shifting colours and technical demands of this brilliant showpiece.

The sparkling passagework and charming melodies which characterise Mendelssohn’s innovative G minor concerto demonstrate Fliter’s innate skill and pianistic instinct.

Following Fliter’s live performance of the Mendelssohn concerto one critic wrote: ‘In the beautiful second movement, time stood still.’

With both composers giving equal focus to soloist and orchestra, the musicality of the SCO’s award-winning musicians shines through as they partner Fliter perfectly.

This also marks the recording debut of Antonio Méndez, who is fast becoming one of the most exciting conductors of his generation following engagements with a host of international orchestras.

“there's still room for something fresh to be said with this evergreen music … in both the Mendelssohn and Schumann, Fliter plays with tautness and energy, fitting hand-in-glove with the smaller chamber-orchestra forces of the SCO and drier recorded sound. Heartfelt and intelligent, this is life-enhancing music, and as a bonus there's The Fair Melusina Overture.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2016

“The Mendelssohn concerto suits Fliter particularly well, and she’s alive to the impetuosity of the outer movements, as well as to the work’s more poetic elements…[her] command of the drama is second to none…[in the Schumann] the sense of an intimacy of chamber music-making is everywhere apparent…recommendable particularly for the Mendelssohn, and wonderfully warmly recorded” Gramophone Magazine, May 2016

“What really works for me is the Mendelssohn G minor concerto with Fliter exchanging the prettiness of some performances for a more dynamic interpretation, and glittering fingerwork that attracts some equally sparkling Reponses from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra under Antonio Mendez… wonderfully lithe, muscular performances.” CD Review, 7th May 2016

“a beautiful fit with the expressive world of pianist Ingrid Fliter. Several factors combine to make this an unusually satisfying Romantic piano concerto offering, but among them is the high-contrast approach of Fliter herself, really capturing the listener's attention… a standout recording.” All Music Guide, 24th April 2016

“Fliter is also in her element. Hers is a reading of firm, exhilarating impulse, at the same time taking its cue from the lyrical heart of the music and glowing with the limpid touch, golden timbre and subtle nuances that are hallmarks of her playing…. [on Mendelssohn] Fliter has the measure of the work.” Daily Telegraph, 7th May 2016

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Mozart: Divertimenti

Mozart: Divertimenti


Mozart:

Serenade No. 11 in E flat major, K375

Divertimento in F, K253

Divertimento in B flat, K270

Divertimento in E flat, K252

Divertimento in B flat, K240


Following the success of performances and recordings of Weber’s Wind Concertos with SCO principals as soloists, the SCO Wind Soloists that feature on this album have since 2012 started to explore Harmoniemusik repertoire.

Inspired by the legacy of the great Mozartian conductors of the SCO including Sir Charles Mackerras, the Wind Soloists make a fine contribution to the SCO’s distinguished Mozart discography.

This new recording includes four of the five Tafelmusik sextets for pairs of clarinets, horns and bassoons, together with the Serenade in E flat major, the first of Mozart’s three great wind serenades.

The Serenade in E flat major has many unusual features. Its opening fanfare - a series of repeated chords on the tonic in E flat - immediately catches the ear.

The fact that Mozart avoids fatiguing the listener with a surfeit of the same sonorities, in music with a necessarily limited dynamic and instrumental range, bears eloquent testimony to his genius.

This recording captures the wealth of detail in Mozart’s Divertimenti; there is something in each of them for every music lover.

Comprising pairs of clarinet, bassoons and natural horns, the players are dedicated to performing each work in a stylish and informed way, from the masterpieces of Mozart, Beethoven and Weber to twentieth-century works and contemporary commissions.

The SCO Wind Soloists are: Maximiliano Martín clarinet, William Stafford clarinet, Peter Whelan bassoon, Alison Green bassoon, Alec Frank-Gemmill horn, Harry Johnstone horn.

The SCO Wind Soloists have appeared in chamber concerts throughout Scotland. They have also performed at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in the presence of HRH The Prince Charles.

“Like all the best ensembles in this music, they strike a nice balance between chamber-musical refinement and rustic earthiness...The rare example of Mozart polonaise in K252 goes with a jaunty swagger...while the lusty contredanse finales exude an impish glee. I fancy Mozart would have smiled in approval.” Gramophone Magazine, February 2015

“These performances pick up on every morsel of wit and ingenuity in the wind writing, and never forget that the purpose of this music was to entertain.” The Guardian, 5th February 2015 ****

“Martín's clarinet...is particularly winning, charming in the slow movements, full of sparkle and wit in the faster ones…the whole air of the disc is exceptionally genial and I enjoyed it immensely.” MusicWeb International, 27th March 2015

“by skilfully modulating their tone between the smooth and the raucous, the two clarinettists here contrive to minimise the absence of oboe timbre in what proves a lively and nicely nuanced reading...these are exuberant performances, recorded with real presence.” BBC Music Magazine, Awards Issue 2015 ****

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2015

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Schumann: Symphonies Nos. 1-4 (complete)

Schumann: Symphonies Nos. 1-4 (complete)


Robin Ticciati talks to Presto's David Smith about Schumann here.

‘Schumann: The Symphonies’ sees Robin Ticciati and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra embark upon their first symphonic cycle together in a programme that they performed in concerts across Scotland.

This is music that is very close to Robin Ticciati’s heart; he describes Schumann as one of his favourite composers and has often spoken about how important poetry, colour and story are to Schumann’s music.

Symphony No. 1 'Spring', blazes and sparkles with joy, Symphony No. 2 finds its way carefully through to the safe haven of its final movement, the much-loved Symphony No. 3 ‘Rhenish’ moves with huge ease and assurance to a resonant and joyful conclusion.

Symphony No. 4 is radical in the way each movement attacks the start of the next movement with barely a pause, and in its minute-and-a-half-long, shimmering and horn-call-filled transition to the finale. Under Ticciati and the SCO it is magnificent, the radical, soaring, disturbing and exhilarating symphony Schumann intended.

The SCO’s smaller forces bring a lightness of touch and a clarity to the counterpoint; under Ticciati they achieve a sense of movement that no previous recording has.

Robin Ticciati’s recordings have received many accolades: Critics' Choice 'Sound of 2012' (The Independent), 'Classical CD of the Week' (Sunday Times), 'Disc of the Week' (BBC Radio 3 'CD Review'), No. 3 in The Sunday Times’ Best Classical Albums of 2012 list and ‘Recording of the Month’ (Gramophone).

In October 2014 Robin Ticciati will enter his sixth season as Principal Conductor of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. He began his tenure as Music Director of Glyndebourne Festival Opera in May 2014.

Gramophone named Robin one of the top ten young ‘conductors on the verge of greatness’ and one of 'Tomorrow's Icons' by Gramophone.

2014 is the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s fortieth anniversary year and ‘Schumann: The Symphonies’ its twenty second recording with Linn.

“Ticciati clearly knows how he wants this music to go and his strong parnership with the Edinburgh players enables him to shape readings notable for their energy and individuality...Throughout the performances are characterised by a woodwind sweetness that is becoming a trademark of this orchestra.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2014

“perhaps the most impressive thing that Ticciati has done on disc so far. Every bar in these urgent performances with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra seems alive and full of interest...in each symphony there is the sense of careful consideration and total absorption in the music so that not a detail of Schumann’s scoring goes missing. Everything flows with total naturalness.” The Guardian, 17th September 2014 *****

“The music-making on this splendid album gives abundant evidence of a happy marriage: you don’t get playing this focused and vigorous if everyone’s in a bad mood...There is lilting flow here, too, plus delicate textures, from the winds especially: all ingredients in performances that make you experience the symphonies’ wonders afresh.” The Times, 19th September 2014 ****

“Ticciati adopts near-ideal tempi, refusing to drag in the slow movements — and he is propulsive in Schumann’s energetic, animated allegros. The wind soloists throughout effortlessly take centre stage, but the splendidly swaggering horns, especially in the Rhenish and D minor works, deserve special mention.” Sunday Times, 12th October 2014

“Ticciati's new recording with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra of Schumann's four symphonies hits the mark… The lightness and buoyancy that are so much a feature of these masterpieces can be heard right across the stunning, super-articulate SCO performances.” Herald Scotland, 29th September 2014

“Ticciati joins the distinguished list of today’s conductors treating Schumann’s Symphonies with the respect they deserve. At times he includes a few personal notions but each of them throws light on the passage in question.” classicalsource.com

Presto Discs of 2014

Finalist

BBC Music Magazine

Orchestral Choice - November 2014

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Chopin: Piano Concertos

Chopin: Piano Concertos


Chopin:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11

Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor, Op. 21


Award-winning pianist Ingrid Fliter makes her Linn debut with a distinctive performance of Chopin’s notoriously difficult piano concertos, featuring the Scottish Chamber Orchestra conducted by Jun Märkl.

Since winning the silver medal at the 2000 Frederic Chopin Competition in Warsaw, Ingrid has built a reputation as a first-rate Chopin interpreter.

Fliter has previously recorded two all-Chopin discs; her interpretation of the complete Chopin Waltzes received several five star reviews and was named as the Telegraph's ‘CD of the Week’ and Classic FM Magazine's ‘Editors Choice’.

Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1 is a thoughtfully scored composition that allows the piano to shine. The Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s beautifully delicate playing perfectly highlights Fliter’s authoritative, yet expressive performance.

Fliter carefully and skilfully showcases the range of tones in Chopin’s second piano concerto, from the dramatic introductory chords at the opening of the first movement to the sweetly lyrical second movement where the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s woodwinds vie for centre stage. Fliter is a breathtaking performer whose performance of Chopin’s commanding chords and lightening speed runs are effortless.

Ingrid Fliter first sprang to international attention when she was awarded the 2006 Gilmore Artist Award, one of only a handful of pianists to have received this honour.

Ingrid Fliter was also selected as a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist from 2007-2009, working with several of the BBC orchestras under the auspices of this programme.

Ingrid Fliter works with orchestras such as Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

2014 is the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s fortieth anniversary year; ‘Chopin: Piano Concertos’ is its twenty first recording with Linn.

Conductor Jun Märkl is constantly in demand with the world’s leading orchestras and soloists, having studied with Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa.

“there's nothing small-scale about Fliter's performances. This is very much Chopin playing in the great tradition: rich-toned, generous though never profligate with its rubato, and invested with a vast range of keyboard colour. It's all put together meticulously too” The Guardian, 28th February 2014 ****

“True, she sails perilously close to over-sentimentalising the opening Romanza...but Fliter plays with grace and heartfelt sincerity - abetted by some lovely duetting with the SCO's bassoonist - that...I was quickly won over...Fliter, by whatever magical means, touches the heart.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2014

“With so many first-rate recorded performances of varying vintages and in different price-ranges did we need another recording? Emphatically yes, if it’s as good as this new Linn CD...There’s plenty of bravura and power in the outer movements without any sense of showing off and there’s poetry in the slow movements.” MusicWeb International, 13th March 2014

“A chamber ensemble of the calibre and responsiveness of the SCO is the ideal medium in which to appreciate the fact that there is a good deal more subtlety of colour and texture to Chopin’s scoring than is generally acknowledged...Then there is Fliter’s playing, and what a pure joy it is. Power, delicacy, refinement and passion are all there in these two concertos.” The Telegraph, 21st March 2014 *****

“Fliter’s beautifully considered accounts of the two Chopin concertos...reveal a sensibility of rare emotional refinement and high Romantic instincts...She has plenty of delicacy for the bel canto flourishes of the opening movements, and muscle for the bravura of the folk-dance finales. Solid accompaniments, too.” Sunday Times, 23rd March 2014

Presto Discs of 2014

Finalist

GGramophone Awards 2014

Shortlisted - Concerto

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - March 2014

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Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Levin Edition


Susan Gritton (soprano), Catherine Wyn-Rogers (contralto), Timothy Robinson (tenor) & Peter Rose (bass)

Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Sir Charles Mackerras

Originally released in 2003, ‘Mozart: Requiem (Levin Edition)’ has been re-issued as part of Linn’s ECHO series which offers a second chance to enjoy the best of the label’s award-winning catalogue.

This recording of Mozart's Requiem uses the score prepared by Harvard professor Robert Levin, aiming to improve on Franz Süssmayr's familiar edition by making the music closer to what Mozart might have written.

Upon release this recording was named a ‘Benchmark Recording’ by BBC Music Magazine and was exceptionally well received by the critics.

Conrad Wilson described a live performance as ‘stark and sombre, yet shot through with sudden flashes of light…presented with the highest clarity with the SCO Chorus in deep incisive voice, and with... An expressive team of soloists.’

Mackerras was the SCO’s Conductor Laureate until his passing in 2010. He produced numerous award winning recordings including BBC Music Magazine’s 2010 ‘Disc of the Year’ recording, ‘Mozart Symphonies 38-41’ with the SCO and Linn. Mackerras performed fifty times at the Edinburgh Festival and in 2005 was the first recipient of the ‘Queen’s Medal for Music’.

2014 is the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s fortieth anniversary year; the orchestra has a large UK-based fan base following performances throughout Scotland and regular appearances at the Edinburgh, St Magnus and Aldeburgh Festivals, the BBC Proms and on BBC Radio 3.

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Nicola Benedetti: My First Decade

Nicola Benedetti: My First Decade


Brahms:

Hungarian Dance No. 5

Tamas Andras, Thomas Carroll, Ksenija Sidorova, Petr Limonov

Bruch:

Violin Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 26 - Adagio

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jakub Hrusa

Chopin:

Nocturne No. 20 in C sharp minor, Op. post.

Petr Limonov (piano)

Gardel:

Por Una Cabeza

Ksenija Sidorova, Alexander Sitkovetsky, Leonard Elschenbroich, Alexei Grynyuk

Hess, N:

Ladies in Lavender – main theme

Tamas Andras, Thomas Carroll, Ksenija Sidorova, Petr Limonov

Massenet:

Meditation (from Thaïs)

London Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Harding

Monti, V:

Csárdás

Tamas Andras, Thomas Carroll, Ksenija Sidorova, Petr Limonov

Tchaikovsky:

Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 35: III. Allegro vivacissimo

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jakub Hrusa

Vaughan Williams:

The Lark Ascending

London Philharmonic Orchestra, Andrew Litton

Vivaldi:

The Four Seasons: Summer, RV315 - Presto

Scottish Chamber Orchestra

Williams, John:

Schindler's List: Theme

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Kirill Karabits


Just 26 years old, Nicola Benedetti has been making chart-topping recordings for 10 years.

This album celebrates the best of those recordings, and her other successes - from winning the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition in 2004, to her 2012 best-selling album 'The Silver Violin'.

A collection of great violin music - from Vivaldi's Four Seasons and Vaughan Williams' The Lark Ascending to the Tchaikovsky and Bruch violin concertos and Arvo Part's Spiegel Im Spiegel. The disc also features brand new recordings - Brahms' invigorating Hungarian Dance no. 5, Monti's ever-popular Czardas, and Chopin's emotional Nocturne in C# minor.

The album includes Nicola performing with leading orchestras and conductors, as well as some of her favourite chamber players. This album showcases the incredible range of Nicola's playing, and demonstrates her appeal to a wider audience across a range of markets.

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Berlioz: Les nuits d’été

Berlioz: Les nuits d’été


Berlioz:

Les Nuits d'été, Op. 7

Roméo et Juliette, Op. 17: Love Scene

Cléopâtre - Scène lyrique, H36


Robin Ticciati cements his reputation as an outstanding Berliozian with his latest recording, ‘Berlioz: Les nuits d’été’, which includes excerpts from Roméo & Juliette and La Mort de Cléopâtre.

A pupil of Sir Simon Rattle and the great Berliozian Sir Colin Davis, Robin’s reputation as one of this generation's best conductors was assured when he was announced as the next music director of Glyndebourne, taking over from Vladimir Jurowski in 2014.

Named one of the top ten young ‘conductors on the verge of greatness' by Gramophone Magazine, Robin delivers fresh insights and vivid colours into this luminous work.

The recording features Kathleen Ferrier prize-winning mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill, who has sung at the Metropolitan Opera, New York and won acclaim as Cleopatra, a role she reprises here: ‘...the core of this stunning concert was a shattering, heart-rending performance by Cargill in awesome voice.’ (The Herald)

The works of Berlioz have featured prominently in Ticciati’s programmes with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra since he became their principal conductor in 2009.

Ticciati’s recording debut, ‘Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique’, received rave reviews: it was named Critics' Choice 'Sound of 2012' (The Independent), 'Classical CD of the Week' (The Sunday Times), 'Disc of the Week' (BBC Radio 3 'CD Review') and No. 3 in The Sunday Times’ Best Classical Albums of 2012 list.

The Scottish Chamber Orchestra is internationally recognised as one of the finest chamber orchestras in the world with a multi award-winning catalogue of recordings under Robin Ticciati, Sir Charles Mackerras, Alexander Janiczek and Joseph Swensen.

“[Cargill] has a remarkably beautiful voice, full of sunny delicacy and warmth but also capable of Wagnerian dramatics...Ticciati's chamber forces do make a difference from the sound we're used to, without disturbing any essential balances. Against them, the brass especially, the voice sounds more at ease and more flexible...the players in turn underpin Cargill's performance with more precise shading” BBC Music Magazine, May 2013 *****

“With his second release for the Glasgow-based label Linn, Ticciati could do for the Scottish mezzo what Barbirolli did for the young Janet Baker in the 1960s. Cargill’s tone is plusher, but Baker is clearly one of her exemplars...her Nuits d’été and Cleopatra suggest a Trojans Dido of stature in the making.” Sunday Times, 28th April 2013

“the virtues that lit up [Ticciati's] Fantastique remain: piercing clarity of colour and texture; heightened drama; increased tenderness and intimacy...This is Berlioz up close and personal, and wonderful to behold. It’s Berlioz performed with love, too...Dark, mobile, richly emotional, [Cargill's] voice finds a near-perfect showcase” The Times, 3rd May 2013 ****

“[Cargill's] account of Les Nuits d'Été, wonderfully controlled and exquisitely shaded, seems to me one of the finest to appear on disc in recent years. Her performance of the Cleopatra cantata is equally subtle and meticulous...There and in Nuits d'Été, Ticciati defines the accompanying detail immaculately” The Guardian, 3rd May 2013 *****

“Ticciati’s grasp of the music’s romantic bloom is one of this disc’s attractions” Financial Times, 11th May 2013

“One of the striking facets of Ticciati's conducting and the SCO's playing in Les nuits d'ete is the clarity and details that spring from the score...The SCO's collaboration with the mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill is also an entirely felicitous one... This is a performance of Les nuits d'ete that is all of a piece” Gramophone Magazine, June 2013

“Cargill wraps her sumptuous voice around the curves of Berlioz's song cycle in a performance of extraordinary musical delicacy, poetic sensitivity and emotional range.” The Independent, 25th May 2013 *****

“[Cargill's] ravishing account of Les nuits d'ete ranks up there with the best of them...Cargill's French diction is superb...[in the second song] she is aided by Ticciati's fleet tempos and the almost period-instrument clarity he draws from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra...This is a disc to which I'll be returning soon and often.” International Record Review, July/August 2013

“Best of all is L’île inconnue; Cargill’s “Où voulez-vous aller?” is impossible to resist...The orchestral effects are extraordinary, and brilliantly played here – the doomy textures at the beginning of the Méditation will induce dread. Cargill is again superb, relishing the melodrama yet managing to give us a glimpse of Cleopatra’s dignity” MusicWeb International, 3rd August 2013

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - June 2013

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