Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice

Awards Issue 2005

Disc of the Month

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Mussorgsky-Stokowski: Pictures at an Exhibition

Awards:

Gramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - Awards Issue 2005

Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

Label:

Naxos

Catalogue No:

8557645
(8.557645)

Discs:

1

Release date:

30th Aug 2005

Barcode:

0747313264520

Length:

76 minutes

Medium:

CD (download also available)
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Mussorgsky-Stokowski: Pictures at an Exhibition


Mussorgsky:

A Night on the Bare Mountain

(arr. L. Stokowski)

Khovanshchina: Act Four Intermezzo

(arr. L. Stokowski)

Boris Godunov: A Symphonic Synthesis

arr. L. Stokowski)

Pictures at an Exhibition

(trans. L. Stokowski)

Stokowski:

Traditional Slavic Christmas Music

Tchaikovsky:

Humoresque, Op. 10 No. 2

(trans. L. Stokowski)

Solitude ('Again, as before, alone'), Op. 73 No. 6

(trans. L. Stokowski)


CD

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Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: St. John's Night on Bald Mountain, "A Night on the Bare Mountain" (arr. L. Stokowski)

St. John's Night on Bald Mountain, "A Night on the Bare Mountain" (arr. L. Stokowski)

Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: Khovanshchina

Khovanshchina, Act IV: Entr'acte (arr. L. Stokowski)

Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov: A Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski)

Boris Godunov: A Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski)

Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition (arr. L. Stokowski for orchestra)

Promenade

I. Gnomus

Promenade

II. Il vecchio castello

IV. Bydlo

Promenade

V. Ballet of the Chickens in their Shells

VI. Samuel Goldenberg and Schmuyle

VII. Catacombae. Cum mortuis in Lingua mortua

IX. The Hut on Fowls' Legs, "Baba Yaga"

X. The Great Gate of Kiev

Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky: 12 morceaux, Op. 10 (arr. L. Stokowski)

Humoresque, Op. 10, No. 2 (trans. L. Stokowski)

Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74, "Pathetique"

Solitude [Again, as before, alone], Op. 73, No. 6 (trans. L. Stokowski)

Leopold Stokowski: Traditional Slavic Christmas Music

Traditional Slavic Christmas Music

Gramophone Classical Music Guide

2010

“Stokowski's orchestrations, as flamboyant and full of flair as his interpretations as a conductor, have increasingly been accepted and welcomed on disc, a good sign that rigidly purist attitudes have nowadays softened. This Naxos collection of Stokowski's arrangements offers outstanding performances by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, brilliantly recorded.
Few would claim that Stokowski's arrangement of Pictures at an Exhibition matches, let alone outshines, that of Ravel. But with its weighty brass it is certainly more Russian. In fact – one of the most serious shortcomings – Stokowski omits two of the movements, 'Tuileries' and the 'Market Place at Limoges' on the grounds that they are too French. Yet Serebrier's new performance makes it very convincing with speeds well chosen and the brass wonderfully incisive.
The atmospheric qualities of the Boris Godunov Symphonic Synthesis come over superbly too, starting with a hauntingly rarefied bassoon solo, even if the recording catches the clicking of the keys. The mystery of the chimes in the Coronation scene as well as the Death scene are more evocatively handled. If A Night on the Bare Mountain finds the Naxos recording rather less immediate than in the other items, the weight of the arrangement comes over well, and the Khovanshchina Entr'acte has impressive weight and clarity.
The extra items also weigh in Serebrier's favour: an arrangement of a Tchaikovsky song that explores an astonishingly wide emotional range within a tiny span and the jolly Humoresque, a piano piece that Stravinsky memorably used in his ballet The Fairy's Kiss. Finally, a baldly effective piece, attributed to Stokowski himself, based not just on a Christmas hymn but on Ippolitov-Ivanov's In a Manger.”

BBC Music Magazine

October 2005

“Serebrier's own imposing, heavyweight style yields different results to the volatile Knussen… but it's always absorbing. Something of the Stokowski sound is filtered through the refined texturing of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, and further enhanced by the spacious concert-hall acoustic.”

Gramophone Magazine

Awards Issue 2005

“…outstanding performances by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, brilliantly recorded in sound if anything even more spectacular and more cleanly focused than that on the discs from Chandos and DG.”

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Editor's Choice

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John Tomlinson

John Tomlinson

Great Scenes & Arias from Mozart, Wagner, and others


Cavalli:

Ercole Amante: excerpts

Mozart:

Le Nozze di Figaro: excerpts

Così fan tutte, K588 (highlights)

Don Giovanni: excerpts

Rameau:

Naïs: excerpts

Schoenberg:

A Survivor from Warsaw, Op. 46

Wagner:

Parsifal (excerpts)

Siegfried (excerpts)

Die Walküre: excerpts


A bass baritone in the forefront of his profession, John Tomlinson is a singer and actor with tremendous vocal and stage presence regularly in demand for his portrayals of some of the most demanding roles in opera today. In a career that has lasted over three decades, he has performed with Glyndebourne Opera, Kent Opera, the New Opera Company at Sadler’s Wells, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and English National Opera, with whom he has had a 25-year association and performed 50 roles. Internationally, Tomlinson has made important appearances at San Francisco Opera, San Diego Opera, L’Opéra de Paris, the Salzburg Easter Festival, Deutsche Oper, Berlin Staatsoper, and at the opera houses of Munich, Dresden and Vienna.

In 1988, John Tomlinson starred in Harry Kupfer’s new production of Der Ring des Nibelungen at the Bayreuth Festival with Daniel Barenboim conducting. It was with these performances that Tomlinson firmly established himself as the greatest living interpreter of Wotan (in Das Rheingold and Die Walküre) and of the Wanderer (in Siegfried) - these roles present what are generally regarded as being among the greatest vocal challenges in the entire operatic repertoire. He has sung at Bayreuth every year since.

“Tomlinson's is a voice that carries the soul of the music in its every breath” Daily Telegraph

“…a generous offering to an artist whose own largesse, of voice and personality, has won him over many years now a special place in the affection of music lovers, particularly in his native country.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Warner Classics - 2564623012

(CD - 4 discs)

$19.25

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Hasse: Requiem and Miserere

Hasse: Requiem and Miserere


Hasse, J A:

Requiem in E flat

Miserere in D


Dresden Kammerchor, Dresden Barockorchester, Hans-Christoph Rademann

“The Dresden Chamber Choir sings with stunning clarity and perfect blend, alert to small details in the counterpoint, while Hans-Christoph Rademann ensures that the broad sweep of the whole adds up to more than its attractive parts. These ingredients make this one of the best Baroque choral performances on disc so far this year.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Carus - Music from Dresden - CARUS83175

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Liszt: Années de pèlerinage, Suisse

Liszt: Années de pèlerinage, Suisse


Liszt:

Années de pèlerinage, 1ère année, Suisse (9 pieces), S. 160

Les Adieux, rêverie sur un motif de l'opéra Romeo et Juliette, S. 409

Valse De L'opera Faust S407

Les Sabéennes, berceuse de l'opéra La Reine de Saba, S. 408


“…Stephen Hough has technically and spiritually digested the first book of Années de pèlerinage to the extent that he can risk personalising certain pieces without sounding the least bit mannered. …he pushes the espressivo rhetoric of the brooding introduction to 'Vallée d'Obermann' and skill keeps the music's narrative trajectory alive through his exquisite tonal control and subtle pedal effects.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Building a Library

First Choice - March 2011

Hyperion & Helios - up to 50% off

Hyperion - CDA67424

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The Trio Sonata in 17th-Century France

The Trio Sonata in 17th-Century France


Clérambault:

Sonata in G major 'La Félicité'

Couperin, F:

La Superbe

Couperin, L:

Simphonie

Dialogue

Geoffroy:

Dialogue pour le clavessin et les violes

Lully:

Trios pour le Coucher du Roi

Marais, M:

Suite in G minor from 'Pièces en Trio' (1692)

Rebel, J-F:

Tombeau de Monsieur Lully

Roux, G:

Suite No. 2 in D major (1705)


“All that one could wish for in a performance of this music is present: charm, elegance, eloquence, force, flexibility, fire, intimacy and, most importantly, soul” (Klassik Heute)

“London Baroque display their accustomed polish and élan, the violin-playing wonderfully declamatory (especially in the Rebel), the continuo-playing highly cultivated.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

BIS - BISCD1465

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Dunhill: Chamber Music

Dunhill: Chamber Music


Dunhill:

Quintet in F minor 'Nitor in adversum' op.6 for two violins, viola, violoncello & horn

Phantasy op.36 for violin, viola & piano (dedicated to W. W. Cobbett Esq)

Quintet in E flat op.3 for violin, violoncello, clarinet, horn & piano


Endymion: Krysia Osostowicz & Fiona McCapra (violins), David Adams (viola), Jane Salmon (cello), Mark van de Wiel (clarinet), Stephen Stirling (horn), Michael Dussek (piano)

“Pastoral, melodic music that nostalgically evokes the English countryside. The performances are excellent, spontaneous, committed and always at home in the locality of the writing. Excellent recording, too.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Dutton Epoch - CDLX7152

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$14.75

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Sharon Bezaly - Nordic Spell

Sharon Bezaly - Nordic Spell


Aho:

Concerto for Flute and Orchestra

Lahti Symphony Orchestra, Osmo Vanska

Lindberg, C:

The World of Montuagretta - Concerto for Flute and Chamber Orchestra

Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Christian Lindberg

Tómasson:

Flute Concerto No. 2

Iceland Symphony Orchestra, Bernhardur Wilkinson


“It is plain to hear why the composers were so inspired by her artistry, and also why BIS is making a significant commitment of recording her: this is the most technically assured, breathtakingly brilliant flute-playing around.” Fanfare

“…Bezaly's… technique is extraordinary. All three concertos, while each following very diverse expressive paths, are imbued with a fantastical and luminous quality that surely derives from the player.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2005

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

BIS - BISCD1499

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Nielsen: Aladdin Suite, Pan & Syrinx, Saga Dream & other works

Nielsen: Aladdin Suite, Pan & Syrinx, Saga Dream & other works


Nielsen:

Aladdin Suite, Op. 34

Amor og Digteren, Op. 54: Overture

Saga-drøm, Op. 39 (FS46)

Helios Overture, Op. 17 (FS32)

Maskarade Overture

Pan & Syrinx, Op. 49 (FS87)

Maskarade: Prelude to Act II


“…commendable to anyone looking for a reliable and cheap way into this wonderful repertoire.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2005

Naxos - 8557164

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Elgar: A Self-Portrait

Elgar: A Self-Portrait


Elgar:

The Music Makers, Op. 69

Jane Irwin (mezzo soprano)

Hallé Chorus

Dream Children, Op. 43

Froissart Overture, Op. 19

Fantasia & Fugue in C minor, Op. 86 (after Bach, BWV 537)


'The Orchestra's playing and the Hallé Choir's singing blazed with conviction and Jane Irwin was in rich voice as the mezzo soloist.'

(The Sunday Telegraph, reviewing the live performance)

“…Elder maintains a tension and sense of belief that The Music Makers very seldom receives. Beautifully balanced and superbly paced, this deeply sympathetic and intensely-felt reading is perhaps the most convincing I have ever heard. The couplings, especially an unusually cogent and exciting Froissart, are a delight to hear.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2005 *****

“The centrepiece is The Music Makers, here given a performance that is above all refined, with the full-ranging recording bringing out the subtlety of Elgar's orchestration.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“Elder, an inspired Elgarian who has a special relationship with this music” The Independent

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2005

Hallé - Elder Elgar Series - CDHLL7509

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Constant Lambert: Piano Concerto

Constant Lambert: Piano Concerto


Lambert, C:

Piano Concerto

Jonathan Plowright (piano)

Romeo and Juliet - ballet in two tableaux

The Bird Actors

Prize Fight

Elegiac Blues


“A sparkling centenary showcase for the youthful genius of Constant Lambert. Jonathan Plowright cuts a dash with his scintillating technique, opalescent tone and beguiling range of colour, and his partnership with David Lloyd-Jones and the English Northern Philharmonia generates a greater attack and thrust that its predecessor. A winner of a disc...” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2005

Hyperion & Helios - up to 50% off

Hyperion - CDA67545

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Dvorak: Symphony No. 6 in D major, Op. 60

Dvorak: Symphony No. 6 in D major, Op. 60


“Colin Davis's… reading of the first movement is marvellously infectious: the slight rasp added to the opening rhythmic figure and the waltz-like treatment of the lyrical moments are wholly convincing. There is a wealth of ravishing detail in the slow movement and the finale is magnificently structured.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2005 ****

“A performance of great clarity and details which also connect with the earthier qualities of Dvořák's most rhythmically exciting symphony.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

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Up to 30% off LSO Live

LSO Live Complete Dvorak Symphonies - LSO0526

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Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95 'From the New World'

Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95 'From the New World'


“as a shop window for a very special orchestra, this own-label live recording couldn’t be much better.” Classic FM Magazine

“magical, particularly in the slow movement, where the orchestra’s unrivalled string section is inspired to playing of breathtaking refinement.” Gramophone Magazine

“Performed with his customary warmth and refinement, Jansons's New World is a notable achievement.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“a collector's item, a landmark in the orchestra's history. But, much more than that, it shows that the union between Jansons and the Royal Concertgebouw is a marriage made in heaven. The playing is supreme. In this Dvorák centenary year, you will not hear a finer or more thrilling performance.” The Telegraph Classical CD of the Week

Super Audio CD

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RCO Live - RCO04002

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Beethoven - Symphonies Nos. 4 & 5

Beethoven - Symphonies Nos. 4 & 5


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 4 in B flat major, Op. 60

Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67


“the modern Beethoven recording par excellence” (The Financial Times )

“It was during Osmo Vänskä's time with the BBC Scottish SO that his Beethoven began winning golden opinions. His reading of the Fourth is fiery but not relentless. Metronome marks are important but not mandatory. Transparent textures and a rigorous way with dynamics also feature. Of particular interest is the skill with which he continuously keeps in view the bass line, and thus the music's harmonic contour, never easy, given the 'open' nature of Beethoven's scoring.
The Minnesota Orchestra are extraordinarily proficient: fleet-footed and articulate, though tonally they have less in reserve than the Berlin or Vienna orchestras. This can be a limitation in the Fifth, where the sound occasionally edges towards coarseness but it makes little or no difference in the Fourth, even in the Adagio. What Vänskä sacrifices in lyric poetry he makes up for in justness of rhythm and chasteness of texture.
Skilful as BIS's engineers are in dealing with the quietest passages, finding an optimum playback level for the vibrant but pianissimo-strewn Fourth takes time and patience.
The performance of the dynamically less problematic Fifth also also bristles with character.
Typically, Scherzo and finale are bound to one another structurally but not tamed emotionally.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Osmo Vänskä's readings are full of character and imagination and, in his Minnesota orchestra, he has the perfect ensemble to support his approach.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - March 2005

BBC Music Magazine

Orchestral Choice - March 2005

Super Audio CD

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BIS - BISSACD1416

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Julia Fischer (violin)

“Classic accounts by Milstein and Grumiaux have been usurped by this extraordinarily gifted newcomer” BBC Music Magazine, Proms issue 2005

“This is a masterly achievement from one of the most impressive of the younger generation of violinists.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

BBC Music Magazine

Disc of the month

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Pentatone - PTC5186072

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Rafael Kubelik - Music Is My Country

Rafael Kubelik - Music Is My Country

A film portrait by Reiner E. Moritz


Recording Date: 2003
Picture Format: 16:9
Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Language: GB
Menu Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, SP
Subtitle Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, JP, SP

“The research, use of stills and archive footage (including glimpses of his farther, Jan, the famous violinist), the contributions from his wife Elsie (née Morrison, that enchanting soprano whom he married in 1963), his articulate and spectacularly hirsute son Martin, and Daniel Barenboim, the trenchant interviews with the conductor himself and the many music sequences are all handled in an exemplary fashion.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

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Arthaus Musik - 100723

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Karel Ancerl & Hermann Scherchen: Great Conductors in Rehearsal & Performance

Karel Ancerl & Hermann Scherchen: Great Conductors in Rehearsal & Performance


Karl Ancerl leads the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in a rehearsal and performance of Smetana's The Moldau.

Hermann Scherchen rehearses his own orchestration of Bach's The Art of the Fugue with the CBC Toronto Chamber Orchestra.

“Two long rehearsal sequences, both very rewarding, Ancerl urbane and immensely detailed in Smetana's Vltava, Scherchen severe and penetrating, directing his own version of Bach's last work.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2005 *****

“Ančerl puts the Toronto players through their paces in Vltava. Even (or, perhaps, especially) when one thinks one is thoroughly familiar with an old warhorse, to experience it being prepared so patiently and gracefully by a man who has the score in his veins is revelatory. Bohemian-born Ančerl was assistant to Hermann Scherchen in Germany from 1929 to 1931. Filmed in the last year of the latter's life, the second section of the DVD offers a rare glimpse of the grumpy, tight-lipped maestro rehearsing his own orchestration of The Art of Fugue. Looking like a cross between Toscanini and the late Pope, the constantly exasperated Scherchen inspired an atmosphere of such awkwardness and tension you wonder how anyone can play their instruments, let alone make music. ...he manages to elicit some memorable playing...” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

Region: 0

VAI - DVDVAI4322

(DVD Video)

$27.50

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Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring

Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring

A Silent Film by Oliver Hermann to the Music of Igor Stravinsky

Ariadna del Carmen, Sophie Semin, Robert Hunger-Bühler


Igor Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps was inspired by prehistoric rituals as well as by a dance performed for the Slavic god Yarilo. Here the story is transposed to the realm of Santeria – one of the few still practiced archaic religions. The material world is represented as an emotionally impoverished big city, while the spiritual world is symbolized as a tropical island where the Santeria rituals are still practiced. The coupling of Stravinsky’s revolutionary music with the ancient rituals and symbols of the Santeria religion creates a framework for the story of three individuals, oppressed by the pressures of everyday life, who experience personal sacrifice and transformation in the course of a Santeria ceremony.

Nudity and sexual content

Recording Date: 2003
Running Time: 127 min
Picture Format: 16:9 (Extras 4:3)
Sound Format: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1
Menu Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, SP
Subtitle Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, I, SP

Best Foreign Film Award at the 2004 Beverley Hills Film Festival

“Long a party piece for Sir Simon Rattle in Birmingham, The Rite of Spring has assumed totemic status in Berlin, too. It has been deployed in an outreach community dance project as well as providing live musical accompaniment to Oliver Herrmann's experimental silent movies at the Berlin Film Festival. Herrmann fell into a diabetic coma only days before completing this defiantly oblique, postmodern artefact. Replete with visual tricks, it has garnered posthumous acclaim for a photographer and film-maker known to music lovers through his collaborations with his wife, the soprano Christine Schäfer.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

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Arthaus Musik - 100333

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Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex

Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex

(+ Documentary)


(First release on DVD)

“Oedipus Rex was conceived as an opera without drama or movement, in which the narrator gives the game away before the events are depicted on stage. Undaunted, Julie Taymor flings everything at it: archetypes from Japanese cinema, aboriginal performance traditions, ballet, puppetry and mask theatre. This celebrated 1992 production ought to look cluttered yet it works... While it's possible to imagine more driven conducting, the ensemble is well drilled and the cast unbeatable.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

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Philips - 0743077

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Puccini: Gianni Schicchi

Puccini: Gianni Schicchi


Alessandro Corbelli (Schicchi), Massimo Giordano (Rinuccio), Sally Matthews (Lauretta), Felicity Palmer (Zita), Marie McLaughlin (La Ciesca)

London Philharmonic Orchestra, Vladimir Jurowski, directed by Annabel Arden

PICTURE FORMAT: 16:9
LENGTH: 74 MINS
SOUND: DTS SURROUND / LPCM STEREO
SUBTITLES: EN/FR/DE/ES/IT

“A notably stellar cast in Puccini's black comedy 'Gianni Schicchi'” BBC Music Magazine, Proms Issue 2005

“Glyndebourne has a first-rate lyric comedian in Alessandro Corbelli and a conductor who handles the music with feeling for its tenderness as well as its brio. The lovers, Sally Matthews and Massimo Giordano, bring fresh voices and good looks, and among the mean old relatives Felicity Palmer's brazen-voiced Zita is a joy. Small parts like the Notary's assistants the boy who brings the news that Gianni is on his way are played with relish, and even the corpse of Buoso Donati comes to life as he falls out of the cupboard where he has been bestowed and takes a brisk curtain-call at the end.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“Puccini's comic masterpiece comes in a production by Annabel Arden that determinedly underlines the black side of this sparkling farce...[Jurowski] also emphasizes that point...Corbelli proves a masterly Schicchi, at once characterful, funny and sinister” Penguin Guide, 2010 edition ***

Building a Library

Recommended DVD - June 2005

BBC Music Magazine

DVD Choice

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Opus Arte - OA0918D

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Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice

Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice


Jochen Kowalski, Gillian Webster, Jeremy Budd

Royal Opera Chorus & Orchestra, Hartmut Haenchen, stage production by Harry Kupfer

Recording Date: 1991
Place of recording: Recorded live at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Running Time: 83 min
Picture Format: 4:3
Sound Format: PCM Stereo

Menu Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, SP
Subtitle Languages NTSC: D, F, GB, I, SP

“The Covent Garden orchestra and chorus are on good form. Jochen Kowalski sings as beautifully as Orpheus should, with no sense of strain at the top of his register.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

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Arthaus Musik - 100417

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Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea

Monteverdi: L'incoronazione di Poppea


Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, Théâtre de l'Archevêché, July 2000

“The casting on the whole is successful, with Nero sung by Mireille Delunsch, a choice that is not only musically successful (particularly in duets with Anne Sofie von Otter where dissonances melt exquisitely into unison), but also opens up the interesting dramatic possibility of presenting the Emperor as a spoilt adolescent, incapable of fulfilling his awesome responsibilities. Denis Sedov's youthful appearance belies his pleasantly rich and resonant voice, powerfully effective in its lower registers, while some of the best singing of all comes from Sylvie Brunet, whose account of 'A Dio Roma' beautifully realised, displays an intelligent understanding of the dramatic architecture of one of the high points of the work.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

DVD Video

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Bel Air Classiques - BAC004

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Weber: Euryanthe

Weber: Euryanthe


Joan Sutherland, Marianne Schech, Franz Vroons, Otakar Kraus, Kurt Böhme

BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, Fritz Stiedry

Recorded 1955

“… of particular interest as it allows us to hear pre-Lucia Joan Sutherland in her salad days when she sang mostly lyric-dramatic roles. In wonderfully fresh, easy voice and articulating the words in a way one would hardly credit from her late, occluded diction, she gives a lovely performance as the romantic, put-upon heroine. She is suitably partnered by the unjustly forgotten Dutch tenor Franz Vroons, who has the proper ardour and style for Euryanthe's beloved Adolar.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Andromeda - ANDRCD5015

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Rossini: Guillaume Tell

Rossini: Guillaume Tell


Thomas Hampson (Guillaume Tell), Giuseppe Sabbatini (Arnaud), Nancy Gustafson (Mathilde), Wojtek Smilek (Walter Furst), Walter Fink (Melchthal), Dawn Kotoski (Jemmy), Egils Silins (Gesler), John Dickie (Rodolphe), Mathias Zachariassen (Ruodi), Yu Chen (Leuthold), Mihaela Ungureanu (Hedwige), Johannes Gisser (Un Chasseur)

Choir and Orchestra of the Wiener Staatsoper, Fabio Luisi

“…a heavily pruned yet musically distinguished account of the epic score, superbly conducted by the 39-year-old Genoa-born Fabio Luisi. …a pretty good introduction to a work which not only blew Berlioz's socks off but Donizetti's and Wagner's as well.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Orfeo - Orfeo d'Or - Wiener Staatsoper live - C640053D

(CD - 3 discs)

$33.75

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Mendelssohn - Complete Organ Works Volume 2

Mendelssohn - Complete Organ Works Volume 2


Mendelssohn:

Fugue in G minor

Fugue pro Organo pleno in D minor

Fugue in C minor

Fugue in B flat

Organ Sonata No. 2 in C minor, Op. 65 No. 2

Organ Sonata No. 6 in D minor, Op. 65 No. 6

Allegro in D

Adagio in A flat

Allegro moderato maestoso in C

Allegro con brio in B flat

Andante Recitativo in F minor


“This is not exciting or showy playing, but solidly musical and utterly stylish.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Somm Céleste - SOMM051

(CD)

$12.50

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Michael Finnissy - Maldon & other choral works

Michael Finnissy - Maldon & other choral works


Finnissy:

Maldon

Palm-Sunday

Vertue

Forget-me-not

Descriptive Jottings of London

Anima Christi


“This is an enthralling disc. From the initial high trombone swoops of Maldon to the final fervent soprano lines of Anima Christi this music grips heart, mind and imagination alike. Exaudi are stunning advocates, effortlessly beautiful in the skewed strands of Palm Sunday, making calm interjections into the Anglo-Saxon battle narrative of Maldon, and jauntily skipping through Descriptive Jottings of London.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2005 *****

“A powerful anti-war piece crowns this distinctive Finnissy survey. The whole programme is brilliantly performed by the 12-strong Exaudi ensemble, and the highly atmospheric recording has an ideal clarity.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“This vividly performed sequence demonstrates Finnissy's literary as well as musical absorptiveness.” Sunday Times

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

NMC - NMCD110

(CD)

Normally: $14.00

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J S Bach - Complete Cantatas Volume 18

J S Bach - Complete Cantatas Volume 18


Bach, J S:

Cantata BWV55 'Ich armer Mensch, ich Sündenknecht'

Cantata BWV47 'Wer sich selbst erhöhet, der soll erniedriget werden'

Cantata BWV157 'Ich lasse dich nicht, du segnest mich denn'

Cantata BWV45 'Es ist dir gesagt, Mensch, was gut ist'

Cantata BWV52 'Falsche Welt, dir trau ich nicht'

Cantata BWV187 'Es wartet alles auf dich'

Cantata BWV151 'Süßer Trost, mein Jesus kömmt'

Cantata BWV98 'Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan'

Cantata BWV137 'Lobe den Herrn, den mächtigen König der Ehren'

Cantata BWV164 'Ihr, die ihr euch von Christo nennet'

Cantata BWV36 'Schwingt freudig euch empor'


“The greatest strength in recent volumes has been the quality of the choral singing. Here, the cultivated and robust Amsterdam Baroque Choir brilliantly evoke the deliberate rhetorical juxtaposition of the text in the opening chorus of No 47… The same is true of the great Trinity cantata Lobe den Herren (No 137) in which the choir bring a kind of organic life-loving vim... The addition of Sandrine Piau graces any recording and she sings her significant arias in Nos 36 and 47 with a disarmingly honest identification with the texts.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Challenge Classics Koopman Bach Cantatas - CC72218

(CD - 3 discs)

$44.25

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Hommage to André Mathieu - Solo Piano Works

Hommage to André Mathieu - Solo Piano Works


Boudreau:

Valse de l'Asile

Mathieu, A:

Concerto de Québec

Dans la nuit

Abeilles piquantes

Tristesse

Les Mouettes

Berceuse

Été canadien

Printemps canadien

Laurentienne No. 2

Bagatelles Nos. 1 & 4

Prélude No. 5 (Prélude romantique)

Petrowski:

Fantaisie ‘Hommage à Mathieu' in G minor


“This before-, after- or during- dinner music played with unfaltering engagement by Lefèvre and he has been excellently recorded.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Analekta - AN29275

(CD)

$15.50

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Steve Reich and Musicians, Live 1977

Steve Reich and Musicians, Live 1977

From the Kitchen Archives No.2


Reich:

Six Pianos

Pendulum Music

Violin Phase

Music for Pieces of Wood

Drumming: Part IV


Steve Reich, Bob Becker, Steve Chambers & Russ Hartenberger

“Not only an essential recording for anyone interested in Reich but a hugely exciting, varied recital.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

Orange Mountain - OMM0018

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Nocturne

Nocturne


Bach, J C:

Quartet in A-major

Handel:

Suite in G minor

Jadin, L:

Nocturne No. 3 in G minor

Locatelli:

Concerto Grosso Op. 1 No. 11

Mozart:

Adagio & Fugue in C minor for Strings, K546

Pachelbel:

Canon

Sammartini, G B:

Symphony No. 10 in F-major


“…highly polished, stylish playing…” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

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Channel - CCSSA22205

(SACD)

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Rohn: Virtuoso Pieces for Violin and Piano

Rohn: Virtuoso Pieces for Violin and Piano


Debussy:

Petite Suite: Menuet

arr. Rohn

Foster, S:

I Dream of Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair

arr. Heifetz

Kreisler:

Hungarian Dance In F Minor (After Brahms)

Moszkowski:

Guitare, Op. 45. No. 2

arr. Pablo de Sarasate

Paganini:

Introduction & Variations on 'Nel cor più non mi sento' by Paisiello

arr. Vasa Prihoda

Ponce, M:

Estrellita

arr. Heifetz

Schubert:

Fantasie in C major for violin and piano, D934

Sinding:

Suite for Violin & Orchestra, Op. 10 'im alten Stil'

Waxman, F:

Carmen Fantasy

arr. for violin and piano


Daniel Rohn (violin) Milani Chernyavska (piano)

“…on the evidence of this disc the profoundest influence on young Daniel's playing is Jewish-Russian Jascha Heifetz. Listening to this CD has been a joy…” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Claves - 502507

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$16.75

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Beethoven - String Quartets Op. 127 & 132

Beethoven - String Quartets Op. 127 & 132


Beethoven:

String Quartet No. 12 in E flat major, Op. 127

String Quartet No. 15 in A minor, Op. 132


The ensemble's latest recording of Mozart string quartets left critics agog: "I doubt that these particular works have ever been recorded with such astonishing command as by the Hagen Quartett. The players' corporate intonation is almost impossibly true . . . A disc whose rare brand of perfectionism is rather special." (CD review by Julian Haylock, The Strad)

“These thought-provoking accounts of the first two of Beethoven's late string quartets shed new light, in particular, on the question of tempo relationships.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2005 ****

“The Hagens seem to take nothing for granted, thinking afresh about each tempo and, in almost every bar, what style of expression, what tone of colour to adopt. …they draw us into Beethoven's emotional world through the sheer beauty of the playing, and the way each detail is particularised.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Presto CD

DG - 4775705

(Presto CD)

$15.25

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British Recorder Concertos

British Recorder Concertos


Beck, D:

Flûte-à-Beck: Concerto (2002) for recorder, strings & harp

Dubery:

Mrs Harris in Paris (2003-4) for recorder & string orchestra

Ellis, D:

Divertimento Elegiaco (in memoriam Ida Carroll) op.54a for recorder, string orchestra, harp & marimba

Gál, H:

Concertino op.82 (1961) for recorder & string orchestra

Hope, P:

Concerto (2003) for recorder, strings, harp & percussion “Birthday Concerto”

Parrott:

Sinfonia Concertante (2001-3) for recorder, solo violin, string orchestra & percussion


John Turner (recorder)

Camerata Ensemble: Richard Howarth (leader and solo violin), Eira Lynn Jones (harp), Janet Fulton (percussion), Philip McKenzie

“…a profusion of enjoyable music featuring the recorder, often piquant, and generous in melody too.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Dutton Epoch - CDLX7154

(CD)

$14.75

Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days.

David Munrow

David Munrow

The Art of the Recorder & Instruments of the Middle Ages


The David Munrow Recorder Consort, Members of the Early Music Consort of London

Recorded 1975 & 1976

“The first disc of this two-disc set is a history of recorder music over eight centuries, full of delightful invention. The second disc features… to demonstrate all manner of early instruments which Munrow relished, including many members of the trumpet family and even a playable cowhorn! It's all most entertaining, beautifully played and recorded.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Testament - SBT21368

(CD - 2 discs)

$28.25

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Mussorgsky-Stokowski: Pictures at an Exhibition

Mussorgsky-Stokowski: Pictures at an Exhibition


Mussorgsky:

A Night on the Bare Mountain

(arr. L. Stokowski)

Khovanshchina: Act Four Intermezzo

(arr. L. Stokowski)

Boris Godunov: A Symphonic Synthesis

arr. L. Stokowski)

Pictures at an Exhibition

(trans. L. Stokowski)

Stokowski:

Traditional Slavic Christmas Music

Tchaikovsky:

Humoresque, Op. 10 No. 2

(trans. L. Stokowski)

Solitude ('Again, as before, alone'), Op. 73 No. 6

(trans. L. Stokowski)


“Stokowski's orchestrations, as flamboyant and full of flair as his interpretations as a conductor, have increasingly been accepted and welcomed on disc, a good sign that rigidly purist attitudes have nowadays softened. This Naxos collection of Stokowski's arrangements offers outstanding performances by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, brilliantly recorded.
Few would claim that Stokowski's arrangement of Pictures at an Exhibition matches, let alone outshines, that of Ravel. But with its weighty brass it is certainly more Russian. In fact – one of the most serious shortcomings – Stokowski omits two of the movements, 'Tuileries' and the 'Market Place at Limoges' on the grounds that they are too French. Yet Serebrier's new performance makes it very convincing with speeds well chosen and the brass wonderfully incisive.
The atmospheric qualities of the Boris Godunov Symphonic Synthesis come over superbly too, starting with a hauntingly rarefied bassoon solo, even if the recording catches the clicking of the keys. The mystery of the chimes in the Coronation scene as well as the Death scene are more evocatively handled. If A Night on the Bare Mountain finds the Naxos recording rather less immediate than in the other items, the weight of the arrangement comes over well, and the Khovanshchina Entr'acte has impressive weight and clarity.
The extra items also weigh in Serebrier's favour: an arrangement of a Tchaikovsky song that explores an astonishingly wide emotional range within a tiny span and the jolly Humoresque, a piano piece that Stravinsky memorably used in his ballet The Fairy's Kiss. Finally, a baldly effective piece, attributed to Stokowski himself, based not just on a Christmas hymn but on Ippolitov-Ivanov's In a Manger.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Serebrier's own imposing, heavyweight style yields different results to the volatile Knussen… but it's always absorbing. Something of the Stokowski sound is filtered through the refined texturing of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, and further enhanced by the spacious concert-hall acoustic.” BBC Music Magazine, October 2005

“…outstanding performances by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, brilliantly recorded in sound if anything even more spectacular and more cleanly focused than that on the discs from Chandos and DG.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - Awards Issue 2005

Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

Naxos - 8557645

(CD)

$7.50

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Midnight at Notre Dame

Midnight at Notre Dame


Bach, J S:

Sinfonia from Cantata BWV29

(transcript for organ by Marcel Dupré)

Cantata BWV147 'Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben': Jesu, bleibet meine Freude

(transcribed for organ by Maurice Duruflé)

Cantata No. 22 "Jesus nahm zu sich die Zwölfe": Mortifie-nous par ton bonté

(transcribed by Maurice Duruflé)

Partita for solo violin No. 2 in D minor, BWV1004: Chaconne

(transcribed by Henri Messerer)

Berlioz:

La Damnation de Faust, Op. 24: Rákóczi March

(transcribed by Henri Büsser)

Mozart:

Adagio from Adagio & Fugue in C minor for Strings, K546

(transcribed by Jean Guillou)

Prokofiev:

Toccata in D minor, Op. 11

(transcribed by Jean Guillou)

Rachmaninov:

Prelude Op. 3 No. 2 in C sharp minor

(transcribed by Louis Vierne)

Wagner:

Begluckt darf nun dich 'Pilgrims' Chorus' (from Tannhauser)

(transcribed by Franz Liszt)


Oliver Latry (organ)

“The magical art of the transcriber clearly lives on in the French capital: just listen to the Prokofiev Toccata and your jaw is guaranteed to drop in amazement!” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

DG - E4748162

(SACD)

$14.00

Usually despatched in 8 - 10 working days.

Isabel I, Queen of Castile

Isabel I, Queen of Castile

Music from the time of Isabelle la Catholique, the first great queen of the Renaissance (1451-1504).


anon.:

Exultet caelum laudibus (Himno de vísperas)

Turkish march

Toccata - Triana : Dinos Madre del Donsel

Muy crueles bozes dan

Lavava y suspirava

Sanctus

Cornago:

Patres nostri peccaverunt

Bassa & Alta Danza 'Mappamundi'

Dufay:

Je ne vis oncques

Encina:

Pavane (Pues que jamás olvidaros)

El que rige y el regido

Levanta, Pascual

Triste España sin ventura

Escobar, P:

Requiem aeternam

Narvaez:

Paseabase el Rey moro

Tordesillas:

Françeses, ¿por qué rrazón?

Torre, F:

Alta, danza sobre La Spagna

trad.:

Al-Andalus - Canción en ritmo Quddan de la Nuba Gribt Al Hussein de Marruecos

Verardi:

Historia Baetica: Viva el gran Re Don Fernando


“This is a thrilling recording that captures the spirit of the 15th century of Spain's Queen Isabel I. Recorded in sound of amazing immediacy.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - May 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

Alia Vox - up to 25% off

Alia Vox - AVSA9838

(SACD)

Normally: $15.25

Special: $11.43

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Bax - Symphonic Poems

Bax - Symphonic Poems


Bax:

Tintagel

November Woods

The Tale the Pine Trees Knew


“November Woods remains the stand-out offering, a performance of thrusting purpose and refreshing involvement…” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Naxos - 8557599

(CD)

$7.50

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Bolivian Baroque Volume 1

Bolivian Baroque Volume 1

Baroque music from the missions of Chiquitos and Moxos Indians


anon.:

Sonata Chiquitanas

Aqui Ta Naqui Iyai

La Folia

In hac Mensa Novi Regis

Caîma, Iyaî Jesus

Pastoret Y chepe Flauta

Ascendit Deus

Exaltate Regem Regum

Zipoli:

Beatus vir

In hoc Mundo


Bolivian Soloists

Florilegium

A recording of Bolivian baroque music in the Church of Concepción in the middle of the Bolivian jungle.

Includes a revealing DVD 'Making of' video diary.

“Unfamiliar music, certainly, but done with tremendous verve and imagination. Florilegium travelled to the 'Chiquitos Missions' music festival in Bolivia in 2002 and teamed up with some local musicians for a truly inspiring recording.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“Sparing no expense to bring you exotic rarities, Channel Classics carted 300kg of recording equipment from Holland to the depths of the Bolivian jungle to compile this remarkable disc in the Missionary Church of Concepción. The British ensemble Florilegium is joined by handpicked Bolivian soloists to recreate the ethereal music dating from the work of 17th- and 18th-century Jesuit missionaries among the Chiquito and Moxo peoples. Far from imposing their own traditions, the Jesuits injected new ideas into traditional local techniques, producing these distinctly South American versions of European sacred music.” Anthony Holden, The Observer

Super Audio CD

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Hybrid Multi-channel

Channel - CCSSA22105

(SACD - 2 discs)

$21.50

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Telemann: Paris Quartets vol. 2

Telemann: Paris Quartets vol. 2


Telemann:

Quartet TWV 43:D3 in D major for flute, violin, viola da gamba & b.c.

Quartet TWV 43:a2 in A minor for flute, violin, viola da gamba or cello & b.c.

Quartet TWV 43:G4 in G major for flute, violin, viola da gamba or cello & b.c.

Quartet TWV 43:G1 in G major for flute, violin, viola da gamba or cello & b.c.


“Printed in Paris by Le Clerc without Telemann's permission in 1736 but composed in Hamburg in 1730, the first six of these quartets called 'Quadri' were such a success that the composer himself was able to have printed – through a 'Privilege du Roi' – another six, the Nouveauxquatours en suites, in 1738. That set, too, had originated in the German city but also went down a treat with the Parisians.
Both groups are written for flute, violin, viola da gamba (with an alternative part for cello) and basso continuo, and comprise the composer's total output for this set of instruments. But confusingly, he divided 'Quadri' into pairs titled concertos, sonatas and suites; and in Concerto Primo, Florilegium use the cello while sticking with the gamba for the remaining pieces.
As before, James Johnstone is the right sort of continuo player, an inventive and expressive presence, not an intrusion. His colleagues are of a similar persuasion and their responses to both the robustness and delicacy of the music is exemplified in the first movement ('Allègrement') of the A minor quartet and second movement ('Légèrement') of the G major quartet.
These interpretations are of very high calibre.
The image is on the close side and the lines are a little crowded; a reduction in volume helps separate them and convey more clearly the nuances in the playing.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“…an enchanting collection… Florilegium are masterly in this repertoire and, built on the imaginative continuo work of James Johnstone, offer charming delights aplenty.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - September 2004

Super Audio CD

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Channel - CCSSA20604

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$15.25

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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons

Vivaldi: The Four Seasons


Candida Thompson (violin 1), Henk Rubingh (Violin 2), Julian Rachlin (Viola), Maarten Jansen (Cello), Stacey Watton (Double Bass), Elizabeth Kenny (Theorbo), Jan Jansen (organ & harpsichord)

“Jansen and friends offer this ever-popular work in a cut-down, chamber version that grows on you with each listening. The playing is full of vigour and imagination, and the sound merely adds to the appeal.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Decca - 4756293

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Mahler: Symphony No. 9

Mahler: Symphony No. 9


“Tilson Thomas immediately establishes a profoundly rapt atmosphere, and the orchestra take what can best be described as a bel canto approach, singing their lines with warmth and poised intensity. In keeping with this, the conductor allows the players considerable rhythmic freedom. Yet one always senses a firm hand on the tiller, and the music is never pulled out of shape, as sometimes seems the case in, say, Bernstein's later recording for DG.
Some may feel that there's insufficient grit or angst here, and certainly the second movement ländler is hearty rather than coarse and the Rondo-Burleske could sneer more viciously – though the thrilling accelerando in the latter movement's coda is likely to get one's adrenalin pumping. But, to be fair, Tilson Thomas doesn't entirely neglect the music's darker qualities, and these often creep into one's consciousness rather subtly.
The interpretation's lasting impression, however, is one of lyrical radiance. In the symphony's final pages, Tilson Thomas tenderly holds the melodic shards together so one hears the song continue, even through the silences. And the evanescent glow of the strings at the end – like the last glimmer of light immediately after sunset – is not so much wistful as consolatory. An unusually moving experience, then, and one that marks yet another high point in this continuing cycle.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“…a most beautiful Ninth with playing of tremendous warmth and poise.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

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SFS Media Michael Tilson Thomas Mahler cycle - SFS0007

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Handel Arias

Handel Arias


Handel:

La Lucrezia "O Numi eterni", Cantata HWV 145

Theodora: Oh bright example…Bane of virtue

Theodora: The clouds begin to veil…Defend her, Heav'n!

Theodora: Lord, to Thee each night and day

Theodora: She's gone…New scenes of joy

Frondi tenere e belle ... Ombra mai fù (from Serse)

Se bramate d’amar chi vi sdegna (from Serse)


The late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson was one of the finest artists of our time. A sensuous and noble singer, the intensity of her interpretations, particularly in Baroque roles, was supreme. Critics worldwide have grasped for superlatives to describe her art. This CD captured Lorraine’s unanimously acclaimed portrayal of Irene in Handel’s oratorio Theodora – “one of the most vocally beautiful and dramatically committed characterizations imaginable” according to The Independent on Sunday – which she sang at Glyndebourne, supported by the same forces as here, Harry Bicket and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. The hybrid SACD technology enhances all the vividness and beauty of Lorraine’s exceptional voice. Coupled with arias from Serse, including the evergreen Ombra mai fù, and the cantata La Lucrezia, this CD is one of the great classical releases of our time.

“Weaving together the familiar and unfamiliar, this is a collection of real light and shade, all done with awe-inspiring power and characterisation.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“The great American mezzo, who died aged just 52 in 2006, was one of the most eloquent Handel interpreters of her time; this disc centres on the dramatic cantata La Lucrezia and generous excerpts from her most celebrated role, Irene in Theodora.” Katherine Cooper, Presto Classical, August 2014

Super Audio CD

Format:

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Avie - AV0030

(SACD)

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Enstrom, Rolf: Immeasurable Traces

Enstrom, Rolf: Immeasurable Traces


“For sheer beauty of sound, this disc is a winner.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

Phono Suecia - PSSACD153

(SACD)

$15.75

Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.

Sea Change

Sea Change

The Choral Music of Richard Rodney Bennett


Bennett, R R:

A Farewell to Arms

There is no rose

Out of your sleep

That younge child

Sweet was the song

Susanni

A Good-night

Lullay Mine Liking

Missa Brevis

Puer Nobis

Sea Change

Verses

What Sweeter Music


“Hard to believe, but this is the first CD devoted solely to Sir Richard Rodney Bennett's extensive choral output. That it's a richly rewarding body of work is nowhere better exemplified than in the curtain-raiser, Sea Change (1984) a marvellously effective, 17-minute cycle to texts by Shakespeare, Andrew Marvell and Edmund Spenser. The Spenser setting thrillingly evokes the terrible monsters encountered by Sir Guyon during a stormy sea voyage by employing a technique akin to Sprechgesang, while the concluding 'Full fathom five' is a worthy successor to Vaughan Williams's setting in his Three ShakespeareSongs.
Whereas Sea Change minimally and subtly deploys tubular bells, A Farewell to Arms (2001) memorably incorporates an extensive role for solo cello and sets the same poems by Ralph Knevet and George Peele that Finzi first brought together for his 1945 diptych. It's a tenderly moving creation, as is the part-song 'A Good-Night' (1999) from the sequence A Garlandfor Linda. If Britten's shadow looms large over the Missa brevis (1990) for Canterbury Cathedral Choir, it's a no less appealing creation for all that.
Bouquets all round to John Rutter and his Cambridge Singers; theirs is a cappella singing of a very high order. Exemplary presentation and admirable sound, tastefully balanced within the comparatively intimate acoustic of the LSO's home, St Luke's in the City of London. A delightful anthology.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Beautifully sung and even more beautifully recorded…” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - May 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

Collegium - CSACD901

(SACD)

$15.25

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Beethoven: Cello Sonatas Nos. 1-5 (complete) and variations

Beethoven: Cello Sonatas Nos. 1-5 (complete) and variations


Pieter Wispelwey (cello) & Dejan Lazic (piano)

“highly distinctive performances, played with enormous flair and perfect technical control, and splendidly recorded” Gramophone Magazine

“Above all these accounts, outstandingly recorded, communicate a level of vitality and spontaneity that is normally experienced in live concerts. From the very first bar of the F major Sonata one feels that Wispelwey and Lazić are re-examining each familiar phrase and finding new and infinitely varied ways of responding to Beethoven's musical argument.” BBC Music Magazine, June 2005 *****

“The articulation and attack, the use of vibrato and the shaping of phrases all combine to make this a richly rewarding experience.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

Channel - CCSSA22605

(SACD - 2 discs)

$21.50

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Monteverdi: Scherzi Musicali

Monteverdi: Scherzi Musicali


Monteverdi:

Scherzi Musicali (1607 & 1632)

Canzonette


Maria Cristina Kiehr (soprano) & Stephan MacLeod (baritone)

Concerto Soave, Marc Aymes

In addition to his books of madrigals, Monteverdi also practised throughout his life less ambitious vocal forms which he designated canzonette, arie or scherzi. Here is a broad selection of these, from the canzonette published in 1584 – when he was only 17 – to the two books of 'Scherzi musicali'.

“Spanning nearly half a century of musical 'jests', Concerto Soave is fresh, light and sparkling as a glass of Prosecco. Quel sguardo sdegnosetto almost self-combusts with pure joy. Irresistable.” BBC Music Magazine ****

“a remarkable testament to the man’s [Festa’s] intellectual and imaginative powers.” Early Music Review, February 2015

“[Kiehr] brings a nice wryness to the mild plaint of 'Ohimè ch'io cado'. Stephan MacLeod blends in well… Jean-Marc Aymes directs with spirit and plays with a fine set of variations by Frescobaldi on the claviorganum.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2005

“It's an entertaining, sensibly varied sequence, beautifully sung, especially by Kiehr, who makes wonderfully expressive use of shading to bleach her voice of all colour at one moment and make it seductively honeyed the next, and which is supported with sparky instrumental playing by the members of Concerto Soave.” The Guardian, 5th August 2015 ****

Harmonia Mundi Musique d'Abord - HMA1951855

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Nordic Solo Flute Music

Nordic Solo Flute Music


Bashmakov:

Fantasia per flauti

Bergh, S:

Pan for Solo Flute

Hermanson:

Suoni d'un flauto per flauto alto, Op. 6

Flauto d'inverno per flauto basso, Op. 16

Koch, E von:

Monologue No. 1 for flute

Cantilena for Bass Flute, Op. 78

Lidholm:

Sonata per flauto solo

Marttinen:

Ilmatar, ilman impi (Ilmatar, Maid of the Air)

Mellnäs:

Fragments for Family Flute for two flautists with ten flutes

Salmenhaara:

Preludi, iskelmä ja fuuga soolohuilulle

Sommerfeldt:

Divertimento, Op. 9, for solo flute

Spring Tunes for Solo Flute, Op. 44

Thybo:

Aria con variazioni per 4 flauti


Gunilla von Bahr, Robert von Bahr (flutes)

GGramophone Magazine

DVD of the Month - Awards Issue 2005

BIS - BISCD150

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