Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice

August 2004

Disc of the Month

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Bach, J S: English Suite No. 6 in D minor, BWV811, etc.

Awards:

Gramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - August 2004

Label:

Virgin

Catalogue No:

5456322

Discs:

1

Release date:

7th June 2004

Barcode:

0724354563225

Medium:

CD
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Bach, J S:

English Suite No. 6 in D minor, BWV811

Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 31 in A flat major, Op. 110

Webern:

Variations, Op. 27


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Gramophone Classical Music Guide

2010

“In an age when great, good, bad and indifferent recordings rub shoulders in a chaotic marketplace, Piotr Anderszewski's playing stands out like a beacon of light and quality. His is the most powerful and distinctive of musical voices, a rare combination of purity and adventure. In Bach's Sixth English Suite his intelligence is as razorsharp as his technique is immaculate. What an endless play of light and shade he brings to the Prelude, what buoyancy to the First Gavotte! His varied registration in the Second Gavotte is central to a deeply imaginative response to Bach; so too is the uncanny stillness he evokes in the Sarabande or the sinister momentum of the final nail-biting, fiercely chromatic Gigue.
In Beethoven's Op 110 he gives us a scrupulously modern equivalent of legendary recordings of the past (by Solomon and Myra Hess, for example), reawakening our sense of the otherworldly, the speculative and mystical in this late masterpiece. His poise and tonal translucency in the opening Moderato are enviable, and so is his explosive sense of contrast in the following Allegromolto. And if for some his attention to detail will seem microscopic and over-refined, others will surely rejoice in a concentration and integrity that are at once exhausting and exhilarating.
Exceptionally self-critical, Anderszewski once left the stage during a performance of the Webern Variations at the Leeds Piano Competition, unhappy and disgruntled with his playing.
Here, even he must have felt a sense of achievement, with his precise and deeply sensitive performance.”

Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.

Editor's Choice

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Janacek: Jenufa, Her Step-Daughter

Janacek: Jenufa, Her Step-Daughter


Janacek:

Jenufa

Sung in English (translation by Edward Downes and Otakar Kraus). Brno version.


Janice Watson (Jenufa), Josephine Barstow (Kostelnicka), Nigel Robson (Laca Klemen), Peter Wedd (Števa Buryja), Elizabeth Vaughan (Grandmother Buryjovka), Neal Davies (Foreman)

Welsh National Opera, Sir Charles Mackerras

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - August 2004

Chandos - up to 40% off

Chandos Opera in English - CHAN3106

(CD - 2 discs)

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Special: $16.00

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Elgar - Sacred Choral Music

Elgar - Sacred Choral Music


Elgar:

Give unto the Lord (Psalm XXIX), Op. 74

Ave verum corpus, Op. 2 No. 1

Ave Maria, Op. 2 No. 2

Ave maris stella, Op. 2 No. 3

O hearken Thou, Op. 64

Te Deum laudamus, Op. 34, No. 1

Benedictus, Op. 34 No. 2

O Salutaris Hostia

Great is the Lord (Psalm XLVIII), Op. 67

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me (from The Apostles)

Go, song of mine, Op. 57

Seek Him that Maketh the Seven Stars

Light of the World


“These strong and refined performances should need little recommendations for Elgarians… The recordings are excellent: plenty of church atmosphere, but bright in tone and clear in detail.” BBC Music Magazine

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - August 2004

Naxos English Choral Music - 8557288

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$7.50

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Romantic Pieces for Violin

Romantic Pieces for Violin


Dvorak:

Sonatina for Violin and Piano in G major, Op. 100

Romantic Pieces (4) for Violin & Piano, Op. 75

Humoresque in B flat minor, Op. 101 No. 8

Janacek:

Violin Sonata

Smetana:

From the Homeland - two duos for violin and piano


James Ehnes (violin), Eduard Laurel (piano)

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - August 2004

Analekta - FL23191

(CD)

$15.50

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Nikolai Kapustin - Piano Music

Nikolai Kapustin - Piano Music


Kapustin:

Variations Op. 41

Eight Concert Études Op. 40

Bagatelle Op. 59 No. 9

Suite in the Old Style Op. 28

Piano Sonata No. 6 Op. 62

Sonatina Op. 100

Five Études in Different Intervals Op. 68


‘Everything on this remarkable disc is played with a nonchalant aplomb and magical dexterity hard to imagine from any other pianist’ (Gramophone)

“…Kapustin's… a Russian (b1937) who's had the bright idea of combining classical forms with a jazz idiom. …the music is full of virtuosity which Marc-André Hamelin handles effortlessly. He also turns in some tight jazz timing - sometimes it's surprising to learn that he isn't improvising, but then you realise that it's all perhaps just too perfect.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2004 *****

“'Crossover' is an old rather than recent tradition, whether the jazz elements are peripheral as in Ravel or central as in Kapustin. Jed Distler, writing for Hamelin's disc in a style as witty and engaging as the music itself, speaks of a Chick Corea-based language that lifts a romantic virtuoso tradition into a beguiling quasi-improvisational style and holds it up to a fun-house mirror. Such high-pitched claims arguably fail to account for too many family likenesses (be they variations, studies or sonatas) or a style that too often suggests composition as a facile rather than arduous process (like Saint-Saëns, Kapustin 'produces music as an apple-tree produces apples'). Nonetheless, there are many scintillating surprises. The Variations' gawky theme blossoms into the sort of elaboration that would have made Bill Evans envious, while the second of the Op 40 Etudes ends with a passing memory of Liszt's Au bord d'une source, reminding you of Kapustin's work as a virtuoso pianist with Alexander Goldenweiser. No 6, Pastoral, a dream encore, sends a tiny cell-like motif spinning through a variety of guises. The Bagatelle's perky tune would not be out of place 'in a Brazilian Chorino' (Distler) and everything on this remarkable disc is played with a nonchalant aplomb and magical dexterity hard to imagine from any other pianist. Hamelin is in his element, and he's been immaculately recorded.” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Everything on this remarkable disc is played with a nonchalant aplomb and magical dexterity hard to imagine from any other pianist” Gramophone Magazine

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - August 2004

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

Hyperion - CDA67433

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