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Mendelssohn & Penderecki: Sextets

Mendelssohn & Penderecki: Sextets


Mendelssohn:

Piano Sextet Op. 110

Penderecki:

Sextet for Clarinet, Horn, Violin, Viola, Cello & Piano


Soloists of the Spannungen Festival

The work’s high opus number should not mislead us: Mendelssohn composed his Sextet for piano and five strings when he was only fifteen years old. Here one will not yet find innovative writing of the caliber of what Mendelssohn would soon produce in the Octet or in the Overture to “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. Louis Spohr and Hummel still hold sway as conventional musical models, but at least the agile Menuetto exudes Mendelssohnian flair, rushing on by with the grace of a fairy. The work was not printed until 1868, twenty-one years after Mendelssohn’s death, and has not circulated widely since then. Mendelssohn biographer Eric Werner described this work as a “miniature chamber concerto for the piano, contrasting the latter with the five other instruments. Along with Witold Lutosławski, Krzysztof Penderecki is regarded as the most outstanding Polish composer of the 20th century.

Starting in the 1980s, Penderecki abandoned all avant-garde tendencies and has been increasingly using the music of the 19th and early 20th centuries as his models. With a generous playing time of 35 minutes, the work presents itself as a reminiscence of great Slavic composers of the 20th century. Here one can easily detect Penderecki’s penchant for Stravinsky, even more so for Bartók and, above all, for Shostakovich. As Penderecki once put it himself: “I am, of course, a Slavic composer who is mainly interested in communicating his emotions through musical expression.”

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Avi Music - AVI8553384

(CD)

$15.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available. (Available now to download.)

Nielsen & Prokofiev: Wind Quintets

Nielsen & Prokofiev: Wind Quintets


Nielsen:

Wind Quintet, Op. 43 (FS 100)

Prokofiev:

Quintet in G minor, Op. 39 for Oboe, Clarinet, Violin, Viola and Double-bass


Soloists of the Spannungen Festival

„Nielsen’s music sets itself apart from the prevailing bathos of Late Romanticism thanks to its linear melodies and overall transparency. In his compositional style he displayed skillful mastery of counterpoint and modern rhythm while incorporating elements of Gregorian chant and of folk music.

Accused at times of detached coolness, the composer once justified his approach with the following words: “Why do we have to go on proving ad nauseam that a beautifully sounding third is to be regarded as a gift of God, a fourth as a true experience, and a fifth as the utmost joy?”

Written in 1921/22, Nielsen’s Wind Quintet Op. 43 helps us partake in that very experience. Thinned down to the pure essentials, the scoring highlights the five instruments’ individual timbres. “At times they speak of one accord, then they irrupt into apparent disorder, then each one speaks for itself”, Nielsen explained. Certain instrumental combinations already sound almost exotic in the first movement.”

We likewise enter the circus ring with Sergey Prokofiev’s Quintet Op. 39 for the unusual combination of oboe, clarinet, violin, viola, and double bass. Prokofiev wrote this work in 1924 under the title “Trapeze” as a ballet for choreographer Boris Romanov and his itinerant dance troupe: music depicting “scenes from the circus life”. With its scoring reduced to the bare essentials, the work was designed to be readily performable in all sorts of circumstances and locations. Prokofiev, nevertheless, ended up composing a technically ambitious work, sporting a quirky character and “several rhythmic difficulties”, as he readily admitted himself.”( Excerpt from the liner notes by Matthias Corvin)

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Avi Music - AVI8553385

(CD)

$15.00

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Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available. (Available now to download.)

De Meglio 1826

De Meglio 1826


Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 22 in F major, Op. 54

Clementi:

Piano Sonata in B minor, Op. 40, No. 2

Ferrari, G, G:

Piano Sonata No. 3 in G Major, Op. 10

Mozart:

Piano Sonata No. 15 in F major, K533/494


Antonio Piricone (fortepiano)

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Ayros - AYRA03

(CD)

$15.25

(also available to download from $10.00)

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available. (Available now to download.)

Flaminis aura

Flaminis aura

Works by Tommie Haglund


Haglund:

Flaminis aura for cello and orchestra

Il regno degli spiriti for string quartet

Sollievo (dopo la tempesta) for string trio

Serenata per Diotima for strings


Ernst Simon Glaser, Julia Kretz-Larsson & Håkan Rudner

Gothenburg Symphony, Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Trio ZilliacusPerssonRaitinen, David Afkham & Joachim Gustafsson

This composer portrait opens with Tommie Haglund’s first score for full orchestra – the cello concerto Flaminis aura. Composed in 2001 and rewarded 13 years later with Sweden’s most important composition prize, the work is in a single movement with a slow basic pulse, and thus conforms to a recurring pattern within Haglund’s production. Its Latin title describes a state immediately prior to a religious revelation, and the music forms an exploration of both the human interior and the cosmos – towards the end of the work a tape with space sounds recorded by NASA is heard: a ‘Song of Earth’.

Performed by Ernst Simon Glaser and the Gothenburg Symphony, the concerto is followed by another composition from 2001, the string quartet Il regno degli spiriti, and the string trio Sollievo (dopo la tempesta). Both these works are here performed by the highly regarded string trio ZilliacusPerssonRaitinen (ZPR), joined by Julia Kretz-Larsson on second violin in the quartet. Sollievo… was composed for ZPR in 2013, and its title – ‘relief after the storm’ – refers to the end of a period of painful treatment following a back operation. With a generous playing time of close to 84 minutes, the disc closes with Serenata per Diotima from 2014, interpreted by the strings of Malmö Symphony Orchestra with substantial violin solos from Håkan Rudner. Celebrating the female philosopher of Greek antiquity, the piece was also inspired by the birth of the composer’s first grandchild.

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Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

BIS - BIS2025

(SACD)

$14.25

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Richard Strauss: Oboe Concerto

Richard Strauss: Oboe Concerto


Strauss, R:

Oboe Concerto in D

Alexei Ogrintchouk (oboe)

Serenade in E flat major for Winds, Op. 7

Sonatina No. 2 (Symphony) in E flat major for 16 wind instruments, AV 143 'Fröhliche Werkstatt'


Despite his advanced age and the chaos surrounding him, Richard Strauss remained highly productive well into the 1940s. As the Second World War was coming to an end in 1944-45, the eighty-year-old composer was working on his Oboe Concerto and Sonatina No. 2 for winds, as well as the Metamorphosen for strings. While the latter work was an explicit response to the destruction Strauss was witnessing, in the Concerto and the Sonatina the composer seemed to be turning his mind away from the events surrounding him. There is a pastoral quality to the oboe concerto, with a highly tuneful solo part and more than occasional touches of nostalgia for the 18th century. Similarly, Strauss headed the score of the sonatina with a dedication ‘to the spirit of the immortal Mozart at the end of a life full of thankfulness’.

To an extent, one might say that Strauss at the end of his life returned to the musical models of his youth. It is therefore fitting that these two works frame the Serenade in E flat major for wind ensemble, composed more than sixty years earlier in the tradition of entertainment music by Schubert and Mendelssohn. Alexei Ogrintchouk, one of today’s leading oboists, has proven himself in previous recordings for BIS ranging from Bach to Nikos Skalkottas and Antal Doráti. With sterling support from the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by Andris Nelsons, he here makes light of the considerable difficulties of the solo part of the oboe concerto, and also directs his colleagues from the orchestra’s wind section in the works for wind ensemble.

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Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

BIS - BIS2163

(SACD)

Normally: $14.25

Special: $12.75

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Stravinsky: Music for Violin, Vol. 1

Stravinsky: Music for Violin, Vol. 1


Rouget de Lisle:

La Marseillaise

for violin solo

Stravinsky:

Pastorale

Prélude et Ronde des princesses

Berceuse from The Firebird

Scherzo from The Firebird

Chanson Russe

Danse Russe (from Pétrouchka)

Suite for Violin and Piano

Duo concertant

Airs du rossignol et Marche chinoise


Ilya Gringolts (violin) & Peter Laul (piano)

In his autobiography, Igor Stravinsky wrote of his not having had any ‘great liking’ for the combination of strings and piano. That there nevertheless are a number of chamber works by him featuring the violin is to a large extent due to the violinist Samuel Dushkin. The two were introduced to each other by Stravinsky’s German music publisher who wanted to persuade him to compose a violin concerto. They obviously hit it off: their collaboration continued after the concerto had come into being in 1931, and they devised a recital programme to perform together on tours.

The centrepiece was Duo concertant which Stravinsky completed in 1932 as his only original composition for violin and piano. Rather than looking for common ground between the two instruments, Stravinsky aimed to emphasize their individuality in a work that he himself claimed was ‘determined by my love of the pastoral poets of antiquity and their scholarly art and technique’. The other pieces on this disc are, with one exception, arrangements of Stravinsky’s own works including The Firebird, Petrushka and Le rossignol. The majority were made for and in collaboration with Dushkin, but a few come from the 1920s and were intended for the violinist Paul Kochanski.

One of these is the Suite for violin and piano, arranged from the ballet Pulcinella – material that Stravinsky revisited in the 1930s in order to make a new version for Dushkin. (The resulting Suite italienne will appear on the second and last volume of Stravinsky’s music for violin, together with the violin concerto and other works.) With this programme, and in the company of the eminent Russian pianist Peter Laul, the highly virtuosic and temperamental violinist Ilya Gringolts makes his return to BIS, the label for which he made his début recording in 1999.

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Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

BIS - BIS2245

(SACD)

Normally: $14.25

Special: $12.75

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

John Pickard: 16 Sunrises & Symphony No. 5

John Pickard: 16 Sunrises & Symphony No. 5


Pickard:

Symphony No. 5

Sixteen Sunrises

Concertante Variations

Toccata (after Monteverdi)


Born in 1963, John Pickard is best known for a series of powerful orchestral and instrumental works and previous recordings on BIS of his music have received critical acclaim in reviews such as Gramophone (‘simply stunning’), American Record Guide (‘superb works in wonderful readings’) and BBC Music Magazine (‘an absolute triumph).

The present disc brings together some of Pickard’s most recent orchestral compositions, in performances by two of his long-time collaborators: the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and conductor Martyn Brabbins. The opening work is Symphony No. 5, which was composed in 2014 with these performers in mind. Lasting some thirty minutes, the symphony is in a single continuous movement. It requires no less than three timpanists who are placed at the back of the orchestra to the right, left and centre, leading to some dramatic antiphonal exchanges. The symphony is followed by Sixteen Sunrises, the result of the composer’s wish to compose a piece ‘filled with light’. The title of the piece refers to the number of sunrises that can be observed during a twenty-four-hour period from the International Space Station (ISS), as it orbits the earth. Musical depictions of sunrises are normally gradual processes, but viewed from the ISS, a sunrise occurs in a matter of seconds, and it is the idea of suddenly shifting from darkness to light (and back again) that formed the basis of the shape of Pickard’s piece.

In contrast to these two works, the Concertante Variations have been described by the composer as ‘a light-hearted divertimento that poses no profound questions’. It is a concise concerto for wind quintet, strings and timpani, cast in the form of a theme and variations. The disc closes with Pickard’s transcription of the well-known Toccata that Monteverdi used first in his opera Orfeo and later in the Vespers.

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Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

BIS - BIS2261

(SACD)

Normally: $14.25

Special: $12.75

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

The Ear of the Huguenots

The Ear of the Huguenots


Huelgas Ensemble, Paul Van Nevel

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Deutsche HM - 88985411762

(CD)

$13.00

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 3 in D major, Op. 29 'Polish'

Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 3 in D major, Op. 29 'Polish'


London Philharmonic Orchestra, Ken-ichiro Kobayashi

London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Ken-Ichiro Kobayashi is recording the complete survey of Tchaikovsky's Symphonies.

The long and under-rated Third is the protagonist of this new SACD.

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Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

Exton - OVCL00506

(SACD)

$16.50

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Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available. (Available now to download.)

Nuevo Mundo

Nuevo Mundo


Gabriel Garrido

Ensemble Elyma

Just listening to soprano Maria Cristina Kiehr in her early collaborations with Gabriel Garrido is a sheer pleasure! This recording has been available first on Symphonia, then on Pan Classics, but now it arrives on Glossa Cabinet for a new life. Garrido is the big ''discoverer'' of music created in Latin America after the arrival of the ''conquistadores'' - this music bears strong traditional flavors, while at the same time reflecting the strong influences from Spain (especially) and Portugal. A big line-up of fine singers and instrumentalists supports the reconstruction of an essential repertory.

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Glossa Cabinet - GCDC80022

(CD)

$11.75

Scheduled for release on 28 July 2017. Order it now and we will deliver it as soon as it is available.

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