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Beethoven Symphony No. 9: Ode to Freedom

Beethoven Symphony No. 9: Ode to Freedom


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 'Choral'


Venceslava Hruba-Freiberger, Doris Soffel, James Wagner, Gwynne Howell

Gewandhaus Chorus and Orchestra, Kurt Masur

On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989, Arthaus Musik combines two unique programmes in one Blu-ray.

The performance of Beethoven's Symphony No.9 at the Gewandhaus Leipzig in the reunited Germany turned out to be a great success for Kurt Masur, who was music director of the Gewandhaus Orchestra from 1970 to 1996 and who decisively shaped the orchestra before and after the fall of the Wall.

The Echo Award winning film documentation 'Classical and Cold War – Musicians in the GDR' by Thomas Zintl spans the range from the founding of the two German states in 1949 to the fall of the Wall. Using archive material and interviews with contemporary witnesses like Helmut Schmidt, Peter Schreier and Kurt Masur, the documentation draws the parallelism between the cultural and political developments.

"This documentary is more than a study on the power of classical music, it is the proof that sounds can make history." Axel Brüggemann, Echo Klassik

Bonus:

'Classical Music and Cold War – Musicians in the GDR'

A Film by Thomas Zintl

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Picture Format: 4:3 (Symphony No. 9), 16:9 (Cold War)

Blu-ray Disc: 25 GB (Single Layer)

Resolution: 1080i High Definition (Upscale)

Running Time: 71 mins (Symphony No. 9), 52 mins (Cold War)

Subtitle Languages: GB, DE, FR, ES, IT

FSK: 0

Region Code: worldwide

Worldwide available

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Arthaus Musik - 108122

(Blu-ray)

$32.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Puccini: Manon Lescaut

Puccini: Manon Lescaut


Montserrat Caballé (Manon Lescaut), Plácido Domingo (Chevalier Des Grieux), Noel Mangin (Geronte de Ravoir), Vicente Sardinero (Lescaut), Robert Tear (Edmondo), Richard Van Allan (The Innkeeper), Bernard Dickerson (The Dancing Master), Delia Wallis (A Singer), Robert Lloyd (Sargeant of the Royal Archers), Ian Partridge (A Lamplighter) & Gwynne Howell (A Naval Captain)

Ambrosian Opera Chorus & New Philharmonia Orchestra, Bruno Bartoletti

“The New Philharmonia Orchestra sparkles and shimmers under the baton of Bruno Bartoletti in this recording with Montserrat Caballé in the title role. She treats us to some of the most expressive Puccini singing I've ever heard in her Act Four aria, Sola, perduta, abbandonata, and she is partnered by Plácido Domingo, magnificently classy as the Chevalier des Grieux...this recording is a treasure.” James Longstaffe, Presto Classical, July 2014

Warner Classics - The Opera Series - 7359822

(CD - 2 discs)

$15.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Vaughan Williams: Serenade to Music

Vaughan Williams: Serenade to Music

and other works


Vaughan Williams:

Serenade to Music

Elizabeth Connell (soprano), Amanda Roocroft (soprano), John Mark Ainsley (tenor), Martyn Hill (tenor), Maldwyn Davies (tenor), Anne Dawson (soprano), Linda Kitchen (soprano), Alan Opie (baritone), Gwynne Howell (bass), Sir Thomas Allen (baritone), Sarah Walker (mezzo-soprano), Catherine Wyn-Rogers (mezzo-soprano) & John Connell (bass)

Five Mystical Songs

Sir Thomas Allen (baritone)

Fantasia on Christmas Carols

Sir Thomas Allen (baritone)

Flos Campi

Nobuko Imai (viola)


“Performances like these don’t come along very often; each one is an absolute winner, and with rich, atmospheric recording quality the satisfaction is of a very special quality” CD Review

“Strongly recommended!” Fanfare

“Profoundly moving” Gramophone Magazine

“Sometimes heard as a full choral work, the Serenade to Music takes on its greatest beauty in its original version for sixteen soloists. Matthew Best's soloists are certainly up to the task here, with some big names in the ranks and a sound that beautifully sits between choral and soloistic singing styles. Thomas Allen is a moving and believable soloist in the Five Mystical Songs; after just a few bars of the first number, Easter, I was convinced.” David Smith, Presto Classical, June 2014

Hyperion 30th Anniversary - CDA30025

(CD)

$9.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Berlioz: L'Enfance du Christ, Op. 25

Berlioz: L'Enfance du Christ, Op. 25


Jean Rigby (mezzo soprano), Alastair Miles (bass), Gerald Finley (baritone), John Aler (tenor), Gwynne Howell (bass), Peter Evans (tenor) & Robert Poulton (baritone)

Corydon Singers & Orchestra & St Paul's Cathedral Choristers, Matthew Best

Berlioz held traditional religion in contempt, but something of the biblical story of Herod’s massacre of the innocents and the Holy Family’s flight into Egypt seems to have struck a chord and resulted in one of his most beautiful works. Indeed, Berlioz compared his ‘trilogie sacrée’ to the illuminations in medieval missals: he saw it as an aid to contemplative devotion. L’Enfance du Christ is one of Berlioz’s most popular and enduring works. The renowned Corydon Singers and Corydon Orchestra, under their conductor and founder Matthew Best, are joined by a first-class team of soloists.

2 CD's for price of 1. Originally issued on CDA66991/2

“Matthew Best's version offers a keenly dramatic view...Jean Rigby is a young-sounding Mary, with Gerald Finley warm and expressive as Joseph...An ideal choice for those who want an intimate view and a superb modern recording” Penguin Guide, 2011 edition

“No previous recording has moved me like this one - magical - heavenly” The Independent

“Luminous Berlioz, with some superb soloists” Classic CD

“This new recording of Berlioz's appealing work well stands comparison with its much-praised predecessors” Gramophone Magazine

“An engaging and moving recording with superb singing from soloists Alastair Miles, Jean Rigby and Gerald Finley” Classic FM Magazine

“The recording is surely the best available” BBC Music Magazine

“Best treats L'enfance du Christ as overtly operatic, not so much by cast movements or varied microphone placings as by his pacing of the action and by encouraging his artists to throw themselves wholeheartedly into the emotions of the story.
He gets off to a tremendous start with a superb reading by a black-voiced Alastair Miles as a Herod haunted by his dream and startled into belligerent wakefulness by the arrival of Polydorus.
Later, there's desperate urgency in the appeals for shelter by Joseph (an otherwise gently lyrical Gerald Finley), harshly rebuffed by the chorus. And, throughout, there are spatial perspectives – the soldiers' patrol advancing (from practically inaudible pizzicatos) to centrestage and going off again; and a beautifully hushed and atmospheric faraway 'Amen' at the end. Balance in general is excellent.
The clear enunciation (in very good French) of nearly everyone is a plus point. The chorus's response to the mood and meaning of words is always alert and sensitive, matched by the nuanced orchestral playing. The scurrying of the Ishmaelite family to help, played really pianissimo, is vividly graphic; and their home entertainment on two flutes and a harp, which can mark a drop in the interest, here has great charm. But overall it's Best's pacing which makes this recording distinctive.
This recording stands comparison well with its much-praised predecessors.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

Building a Library

First Choice - December 2001

Hyperion Dyads - CDD22067

(CD - 2 discs)

$14.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Haydn: Stabat Mater

Haydn: Stabat Mater


Arleen Auger (soprano), Alfreda Hodgson (contralto), Gwynne Howell (bass), Anthony Rolfe Johnson (tenor) & John Birch (continuo)

The Argo Chamber Orchestra, Laszlo Heltay

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4762441

(CD)

$8.50

(Sorry, download not available in your country)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Bach, J S: St John Passion, BWV245

Bach, J S: St John Passion, BWV245

Sung in English


“Britten characteristically refuses to follow any set tradition, whether Baroque, Victorian or whatever, and, with greater extremes of tempo than is common (often strikingly fast), the result makes one listen afresh...A superb bargain.” Penguin Guide, 2010 ***

Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

Early Music

Decca - Double Decca - 4438592

(CD - 2 discs)

Normally: $12.50

Special: $9.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Live from the Herkulessaal, Munich 1984


Edith Mathis (soprano), Trudeliese Schmidt (mezzo-soprano), Peter Schreier (tenor) & Gwynne Howell (bass)

Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Sir Colin Davis

Mozart‘s last work, the Requiem Mass in D minor K626, receives a strong performance from the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Chorus under Mozart specialist Colin Davis in a classic recording made in 1984. It features the outstanding Peter Schreier and Edith Mathis as well as ever-popular Welsh bass Gwynne Howell and mezzo-soprano Trudeliese Schmidt as the soloists.

Popular legend has it that the Requiem was commissioned by a mysterious stranger, fuelling Mozart‘s obsession that the piece was his own Mass. However the probable truth is much less dark, that one Count Walsegg, who had a well-known penchant for commissioning works which he attempted to pass off as his own, commissioned it upon the death of his wife. Mozart died in 1791, before fi nishing his work. It was later completed by one of his students, Franz Süssmayr, at the request of Mozart‘s wife Constanze.

Blu-ray Disc with High Resolution Audio in 192 kHz

This series of Hi-Res Audio releases features the pure sound experience of studio master tapes, available digitally for the first time in their uncompressed form. The 24 Bit resolution with 192 kHz sampling rate enable a whole new way to listen to the original.

Sound Formats: PCM 192 kHz / 48 kHz

Picture Format: 4:3

Blu-ray Disc 25 GB (Single Layer)

Resolution: 1080i High Definition (Upscale)

Running Time: 60 mins

FSK: 0

Region: worldwide

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Arthaus Musik Hi-Res Audio - 109180

(Blu-ray)

$21.75

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Wagner: Tristan und Isolde

Wagner: Tristan und Isolde


Linda Esther Gray (Isolde), John Mitchinson (Tristan), Anne Wilkens (Brangäne), Phillip Joll (Kurnewal), Nicholas Folwell (Melot), Gwynne Howell (Marke), Arthur Davies (Hirt), Geoffrey Moses (Steuermann), John Harris (Stimme eines jungen Seemanns)

Orchestra of the Welsh National Opera, Chorus of the Welsh National Opera, Reginald Goodall

Decca - 4789453

Download only from $16.75

Available now to download.

25 Years German Reunification

25 Years German Reunification


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 'Choral'


Venceslava Hruba-Freiberger (soprano), Doris Soffel (mezzo-soprano), James Wagner (tenor) & Gwynne Howell (bass)

Gewandhaus Choir and Orchestra

On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the German reunification on October 3, 2015, Arthaus Musik combines two unique programmes as a 2 DVD Edition.

The impressive documentary 'Classical Music and Cold War – Musicians in the GDR' by Thomas Zintl (ECHO Klassik Winner, Best Music Documentary) spans the range from the founding of the two German states in 1949 to the fall of the Wall in 1989. Using archive material and interviews with political as well as cultural representatives of that time, such as Helmut Schmidt, Peter Schreier and Kurt Masur, the film draws a parallel between the cultural and political developments.

The performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 at the Gewandhaus Leipzig in 1991 turned out to be a great success for Kurt Masur. Masur, the Gewandhaus’ music director from 1970 to 1996, was one of the six prominent Leipzig citizens who came up with the call “Keine Gewalt!” (“No Violence!”) on the Monday demonstration on October 9, 1989, thus contributing significantly to its peaceful outcome. Since then, Kurt Masur and the Gewandhaus orchestra have been part of the collective memory.

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Picture Format: 16:9 (Cold War), 4:3 (Symphony No.9)

Running Time: 52 mins (Cold War), 71 mins (Symphony No. 9)

Audio Language: DE

Subtitle Languages: EN, FR, ES, IT (Cold War), EN, DE, FR, ES (Symphony No.9)

1 x DVD 5 / 1 x DVD 9 / NTSC

FSK: 0

Available Worldwide

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Arthaus Musik - 101794

(DVD Video - 2 discs)

$21.75

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Handel: Ariodante

Handel: Ariodante


Ann Murray (Ariodante), Joan Rodgers (Ginevra), Lesley Garrett (Dalinda), Gwynne Howell (The King of Scotland), Christopher Robson (Polinesso), Paul Nilon (Lurcanio), Mark Le Brocq (Odoardo)

English National Opera Orchestra and Chorus, Ivor Bolton (conductor) & David Alden (stage director)

Choreographer Michael Keegan-Dolan

Design Ian MacNeil

Lighting Wolfgang Göbbel

When this production of Handel’s Ariodante – directed by David Alden and conducted by Ivor Bolton – had its premiere, it met with unanimous critical and popular acclaim. Alden, as a theatrical modernist, transformed the opera seria into an erotically charged nightmare of lust, betrayal and violated innocence. With a superlative cast including Ann Murray, Joan Rodgers and Gwynne Howell this rich and strange Ariodante is a surprisingly modern drama of psychological and physical cruelty.

Ariodante is Handel’s 1735 setting of an episode from Ariosto, in which the King of Scotland’s daughter is treacherously accused of infidelity to her promised husband. The central situation of sexual jealousy and mistaken identity is set amidst a web of intense family relationships. The range of feelings provoked as the characters develop is caught in music of quite extraordinary emotional power, even by Handel’s own exalted standards.

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Picture Format: 16:9

Audio Language: GB

Subtitles: DE, FR, NL

DVD Format: DVD 9 / NTSC

Running Time: 178 mins

FSK: 0

“a moving, visually striking show, musically impressive.” BBC Music Magazine, June 2015 ****

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

Early Music

Arthaus Musik - 100065

(DVD Video)

Normally: $27.25

Special: $21.80

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

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