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Johannes Brahms (1833-97)

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Brahms: Complete Symphonies

Brahms: Complete Symphonies


Brahms:

Serenade No. 1 in D major, Op. 11

Academic Festival Overture, Op. 80

Tragic Overture, Op. 81

Variations on a theme by Haydn for orchestra, Op. 56a 'St Anthony Variations'

Serenade No. 2 in A Major, Op. 16

Symphonies Nos. 1-4 (Complete)


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Brahms: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 2

Brahms: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 2


Brahms:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15

Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 83


Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

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Brahms: The Complete Piano Trios

Brahms: The Complete Piano Trios


Brahms:

Piano Trios Nos. 1-3 (Complete)

Clarinet Trio in A minor, Op. 114

Ludmila Peterková (clarinet)

Horn Trio in E flat major, Op. 40

Přemysl Vojta (french horn)


Smetana Trio

New CD from BBC Music Magazine Award Winning Smetana Trio.

Following on from the recording of the complete trios of Antonin Dvořak (Supraphon), the renowned and critically acclaimed Smetana Trio have taken the logical step of recording a Johannes Brahms album of the same ilk. As a pianist, Brahms earned admiration back in his childhood and later on many occasions even premiered his own pieces. Almost four decades span the first trio Brahms wrote, at the age of twenty, and the last. Besides piano trios in the traditional configuration, he composed a trio for horn and a trio for clarinet. The sound of the horn, an instrument Brahms himself played, was reputedly loved by the composer’s mother and he wrote the horn trio as a response to her death. Brahms created the clarinet trio for the celebrated clarinettist Richard Muhlfeld, whom the composer esteemed immensely.

The Smetana Trio’s guests on the new recording are the outstanding clarinettist Ludmila Peterkova and the superlative horn player Přemysl Vojta, winner of the ARD Munich competition (2010) and holder of a Beethoven Ring. Brahms with the tenderness and engrossing romantic expressiveness of the Smetana Trio.

Recorded at the Martinek Studio, Prague, June 2011 (Trios Nos 2&3, Clarinet Trio) and June 2012 (Trio No. 1, Horn Trio).

“Overall, these musicians have an especially strong and fine sense of line. The Horn Trio is full of echt-Romantic vistas and half-lights...The Clarinet Trio is a revelation: not at all the austere, reserved piece it often seems, but deeply poetic and full of late autumnal colours.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2013 ****

“What the Smetana may lack in polish they make up for in exciting raw edged playing. This rather sets them apart from other ensembles.” MusicWeb International, April 2013

“there is spontaneous engagement with the music and such a heroic sweep to the playing...(Peterkova's clarinet playing in the Op. 114 Trio is absolutely magical)...The Smetana Trio is thus at or near the top of my short-list of relatively recent recordings of these glorious works.” International Record Review, May 2013

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Brahms: Violin Sonatas

Brahms: Violin Sonatas


Brahms:

Violin Sonata No. 1 in G major, Op. 78

Sonatensatz (Scherzo from the F.A.E. sonata), WoO 2

Violin Sonata No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108


Jana Vonášková-Nováková (violin) & Irina Kondratenko (piano)

Recorded at the Martínek Studio, Prague, September and October 2013.

Shortly after the release of the complete Brahms piano trios (Smetana Trio, SU40722), Jana Vonášková has returned to the German master, this time in tandem with the brilliant Latvian pianist Irina Kondratenko. In addition to two Brahms violin sonatas, the CD features the F.A.E. Sonata, a work created jointly by Brahms, Schumann and Dietrich as a gift (and a puzzle) for the celebrated violinist Joseph Joachim. Although Brahms’s ebullient Scherzo is generally known, the sonata in its entirety has only rarely been recorded or performed on stages. The letters F.A.E. stand for Joachim’s credo in life: Frei, aber einsam (Free, but lonely), with the respective notes also being the cornerstones of the work’s motivic material. Brahms wrote his mature Sonata No. 1 in G major almost concurrently with his violin concerto.

Sonata No. 3 in D minor already clearly possesses the nature of a concertante piece, placing extreme technical requirements on the performers. Bearing witness to the extraordinary qualities of the violinist Jana Vonášková are her numerous successes (her debut with the Czech Philharmonic conducted by Jiří Bělohlávek, victory at the Young Concert Artists Trust in London, Wigmore Hall debut, etc.), as well as acclaimed recordings she has made as a member of the Smetana Trio. For Vonášková, Brahms is above all a heartfelt matter.

“Vonášková-Nováková is most alert to the chambe music subtleties of Brahms's writing. She is particularly good at interacting with the piano and in demarcating moments where she is the soloist of the accompanist. It's a pity, however, that her pianist is not quite on the same level.” BBC Music Magazine, June 2014 **

“This duo is young but already exceptionally experienced, and their ensemble sounds excellent...Op.108 receives an intelligent, thoughtful and occasionally withdrawn reading – in the sense of the character of the music being autumnal.” MusicWeb International, 30th July 2014

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André Navarra: Prague Recordings

André Navarra: Prague Recordings


Beethoven:

Cello Sonata No. 3 in A major, Op. 69

Alfred Holecek (piano)

Bloch, E:

Schelomo

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Karel Ancerl

Boccherini:

Cello Sonata in G major, G. 5

Brahms:

Double Concerto for Violin & Cello in A minor, Op. 102

Josef Suk (violin)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Karel Ancerl

Cello Sonata No. 1 In E Minor, Op. 38

Alfred Holecek (piano)

Cello Sonata No. 2 in F major, Op. 99

Alfred Holecek (piano)

Hervelois:

Suite No. 2 in D minor

František Maxián (piano)

Honegger:

Sonatina for Violin and Cello, H 80

Josef Suk (violin)

Ibert:

Concerto for Cello & Wind Instruments

Czech Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, Martin Turnovský

Kodály:

Duo for Violin and Cello, Op. 7

Josef Suk (violin)

Lalo:

Cello Concerto in D minor

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Constantin Silvestri

Martinu:

Concertino for Cello, Winds, Percussion & Piano in C minor, H. 143

Czech Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, Martin Turnovský

Duo for Violin and Cello No. 1, H. 157

Josef Suk (violin)

Duo for Violin and Cello No. 2, H. 371

Josef Suk (violin)

Prokofiev:

Sinfonia Concertante in E minor for cello & orchestra, Op. 125

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Karel Ancerl

Cello Sonata in C major, Op. 119

Alfred Holecek (piano)

Ravel:

Vocalise-étude en forme de habanera

Respighi:

Adagio con variazioni for cello and orchestra

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Karel Ancerl

Schumann:

Cello Concerto in A minor, Op. 129

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Karel Ancerl


André Navarra (cello)

When at the age of 15 André Navarra (1911-1988) completed his studies at the Paris Conservatoire, he ceased taking lessons and set out on his own path, honing his skills on, among other things, Ševčík’s virtuoso violin etudes, which he himself arranged for the cello.

He drew inspiration from the finest instrumentalists of his time. Victory in the prestigious competition in Vienna (1937) launched his international career as a soloist. Following his debut at the Prague Spring festival in May 1951, he would pay numerous visits to the city – to appear at the festival, to perform opposite the Czech Philharmonic, as well as to record for Supraphon.

The present 5-CD pack is the first complete release of the 19 studio albums Navarra made for the label between 1953 and 1966.

Includes some remarkable tracks that have not been previously issued digitally.

His collaboration with Karel Ančerl and Josef Suk gave rise to the legendary recording of Brahms’s Double Concerto, with the accounts of pieces by Prokofiev, Bloch, Schumann and Respighi made with the Czech Philharmonic under Ančerl being just as impressive and enthralling. In addition to Josef Suk, Navarra worked with the superlative pianists Alfred Holeček and František Maxián.

The Supraphon set includes six hours of sensitively remastered recordings, a real treat for those loving the enchanting cello timbres.

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Supraphon Archiv - SU42292

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Antonio Pedrotti in Prague

Antonio Pedrotti in Prague


Brahms:

Variations on a theme by Haydn for orchestra, Op. 56a 'St Anthony Variations'

Debussy:

Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune

Falla:

Noches en los jardines de Espana

Mendelssohn:

Symphony No. 4 in A major, Op. 90 'Italian'

Mussorgsky:

Pictures at an Exhibition

orch. Ravel

Ravel:

Daphnis et Chloé - Suite No. 2

Ma Mère l'Oye

Pavane pour une infante défunte

Respighi:

Roman Festivals

Fountains of Rome

La Boutique Fantasque, PP120

Pines of Rome


“Regardless of his reputation and engagement elsewhere, the Czech cultural scene definitely has to count Antonio Pedrotti among the international élite of conductors,” a music critic wrote with regard to Pedrotti’s stirring performance with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Indeed, the world wanted Italian conductors willingly showing their southern temperament. There was no place for Pedrotti whose style of work was far from portentous and possessed an almost “non‐Italian” carefulness. Yet he became the most beloved foreign conductor with the Czech Philharmonic in the 1950s and 1960s.

He was one of the first conductors to visit the orchestra from behind “the iron curtain” after Kubelík’s emigration. The musicians still remembered the high professional demands uncompromisingly required by Václav Talich, which was precisely what Pedrotti could follow up successfully. He conducted without score or baton, was consistent and always went straight to the point, yet he had a very humane approach.

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Supraphon - SU41992

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Cigánski Diabli: Adagio & Furioso

Cigánski Diabli: Adagio & Furioso


Albinoni:

Adagio for Strings and Organ in G minor

Brahms:

Hungarian Dance No. 5

Hungarian Dance No. 12 in D minor

Dvorak:

Slavonic Dance No. 8 in G minor, Op. 46 No. 8

Songs My Mother Taught Me, Op. 55 No. 4

Haydn:

Piano Trio No. 39 in G major, Hob.XV:25: Finale 'Rondo all'ongarese'

Kalman:

Komm, Zigány! [Countess Mariza]

Liszt:

Hungarian Rhapsody, S244 No. 2 in C sharp minor

Paganini:

Caprice for solo violin, Op. 1 No. 24 in A minor

Rigler:

Gipsy Dances

Sarasate:

Zigeunerweisen, Op. 20


Cigánski diabli (Gypsy Devils), Ernest Šarközi (artistic director)

In Roma fairy tales, it is usually the devil who imbues Gypsy music with its inimitable vivacity. And when listening to Cigánski Diabli, you cannot help but believe it. The popularity of this Gypsy orchestra has crossed the borders of their native Slovakia into Moravia, Bohemia and much further afield. Of late, they have been giving concerts abroad with in creasing frequency – Germany (including at the Berliner Philharmoniker Hall), England, France, Canada, etc. The ensemble, made up of eight professional, classically trained musicians, has already received three platinum discs.

A traditional cimbalom band? Well, yes and no. They have, so to speak, many more strings to their bow: folk music (ranging from Slovak to Jewish), on occasions walking a tightrope between pop and jazz, at other times performing Haydn together with a “classical” pianist or a symphony orchestra. And since Brahms, Liszt and Dvořák were inspired by the “Gypsy style”, why not turn things on their head and play their music the Gypsy way?

With their characteristic virtuosity and vivacity, Cigánski diabli have entered the rarefied domain of classical music – yet in a manner entirely of their own and with arrangements not respecting the borders of genres. But what’s the use of borders when the music is of such splendour?

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David Oistrakh plays Mozart, Beethoven & Brahms

David Oistrakh plays Mozart, Beethoven & Brahms


Beethoven:

Romance No. 2 for Violin and Orchestra in F major, Op. 50

Karel Ancerl

Brahms:

Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 77

Antonio Pedrotti

Mozart:

Violin Concerto No. 3 in G major, K216

Karel Ancerl


Born in Odessa in 1908, David Oistrakh became one of the greatest violin legends of the 20th century. In 1946 Prague was among the first destinations of his post-war foreign tours. From that time on he would repeatedly return to the city as a violinist and conductor.

Owing to his technical mastery and exquisitely warm tone, Oistrakh became an insuperable interpreter of grand Romantic concerti. Serving as a case in point is Brahms’s Concerto in D major, a work of extreme technical difficulty, recorded in Prague with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Antonio Pedrotti.

Yet true mastery is frequently manifested on a seemingly simple Classicist repertoire; the lucid structure and straightforward melodiousness require of the performer stylistic purity as well as balance and culture of tone. These very qualities are characteristic of Oistrakh’s recording of Mozart’s third violin concerto and Beethoven’s Romance, Op. 50, which he made in 1954 with Karel Ancerl conducting the Czech Philharmonic, already as a world-renowned virtuoso.

For the purpose of this release, the legendary recordings have been remastered from the original tapes.

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Supraphon - SU40152

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Dreams: Dagmar Pecková

Dreams: Dagmar Pecková


Berio:

Folk Songs

Brahms:

Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53

Mahler:

Rückert-Lieder (5 songs, complete)

Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (4 songs, complete)

Das irdische Leben (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Rheinlegendchen (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Wer hat dies' Liedlein Erdacht? (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Wo die schönen Trompeten blasen (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Urlicht (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Kindertotenlieder

Ablösung im Sommer (Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit)

Zu Strassburg auf der Schanz (Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit)

Nicht wiedersehen (Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit)

Um schlimme Kinder artig zu machen (Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit)

Erinnerung (Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit)

Wagner:

Wesendonck-Lieder (5)


A world renowned singer whose professional career could perhaps be best summed up by the sheer number of leading orchestras (Wiener Philharmoniker, Tonhalle Zürich, LPO, LSO, BBC Symphony, NHK Symphony, Cleveland and Pittsburgh SO, etc.) and conductors (Bělohlávek, Herreweghe, Järvi, Mackerras, Sawallisch, etc) she has worked with or by listing her appearances at the most prestigious festivals, concert halls and opera houses. A mezzo-soprano possessing a distinct voice and great charisma, a bold personality who owing to, among other things, her openness has also succeeded in addressing "nonclassical” audiences, even though she herself remains faithful to classical music. Pecková has confessed: Mahler and Wagner; two composers who have influenced my entire career. They were discovered for me by Jiří Bělohlávek. I can return to these songs – dreams at any time, and they will never cease to surprise me with their unutterable perfection. Supraphon is now returning to these recordings, which represented a significant milestone in Dagmar Pecková’s artistic career and introduced her to the world as a superlative performer of Mahler’s music.

The inner world of Mahler’s songs – a landscape to which Dagmar Pecková likes returning again and again.

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Gipsy Fire: Pavel Sporcl

Gipsy Fire: Pavel Sporcl

Recorded in Prague at the Domovina Studio, June 16 and 17, 2014


 

Hungarian Csardas

Russian Fantasy II

Babai:

Caprice Tzigany

Bock, J:

Fiddler on the Roof: theme

Brahms:

Hungarian Dance No. 1 in G minor

Březina:

Once Upon A Time

Cosma, V:

Film Music Themes

Csampai:

Hommage a Janos Bihari

Friss in A flat major

Hubay:

Scène de la csárda No. 5 'Hullámzó Balaton', Op. 33

Piazzólla:

Caprice Tzigany


Pavel Sporcl (violin)

Gipsy Way Ensemble

Over 20,000 discs sold, more than 220 concerts at home and abroad (including in France and China), two extensive tours... those are just a few examples of the successes gained by the Gipsy Way project in the wake of the 2008 album Pavel Šporcl recorded with his Gipsy band.

Six years down the line, in tandem with Supraphon, the violinist held two concerts at Prague’s legendary Domovina Studio, whose fruit is a new CD, 'Gipsy Fire'.

Stepping into the same river twice? Well, yes and no. On the new release, a succession of technically challenging 'Gipsy' repertoire pieces are blended with catchy and melancholic film melodies (Grand blond avec une chaussure noire and Fiddler on the Roof, and a theme Pavel recorded for the Czech movie Divided We Fall), and Piazzolla’s beautiful breathtaking prayer Ave Maria.

Pavel and the Gipsy Way Ensemble play as if their very lives depended on it and the audience’s frenzied response would indicate that they don’t want the music to ever stop. Well, that’s not a problem with a CD.

Gipsy Fire – a geyser of unbridled energy and engrossing virtuosity, a stroke of pure beauty.

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