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Be Glad Then, America!

Be Glad Then, America!


Bennett, Robert:

The Fun and Faith of William Billings, American

Billings:

Be Glad Then America – anthem

When Jesus Wept

Chester (Let tyrants shake their iron rod)

Schuman:

New England Triptych: Three Pieces for Orchestra After William Billings


University of Maryland Chorus & The National Symphony Orchestra, Washington, D.C., Antal Doráti

To celebrate America’s bicentennial, the National Symphony of Washington DC commissioned Robert Russell Bennett to write a work, and he responded with The Fun and Faith of William Billings. It appeared on the official souvenir LP recording of the JFK Center for Performing Arts. The LP – and this CD, the first appearance on Decca and mastered from the original tapes – also includes Billings’s own Hymns, as well as William Schuman’s New England Triptych is subtitled ‘Three pieces for orchestra after William Billings’. The CD includes the original LP liner notes and complete sung texts.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4822884

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Rachmaninov: Preludes

Rachmaninov: Preludes


Rachmaninov:

Preludes Op. 23 Nos. 1-10 (complete)

Preludes Op. 32 Nos. 1-13 (complete)


Yara Bernette (piano)

Born Bernette Epstein in Boston in 1920 of Russian heritage, Yara Bernette’s family moved to Brazil when she was six months old. Her first piano teacher was José Kliass, like Claudio Arrau a pupil of Martin Krause, who in turn had been a pupil of Liszt. Both Arrau and Arthur Rubinstein were supportive of her and she made her American debut in 1949 at the New York Town Hall. In 1955 she made her European debut in Paris with Heitor Villa-Lobos on the podium. She was also a sought-after teacher and in 1972 joined the Hochschule für Musik in Hamburg where she remained for some twenty years. Her North American debut in New York’s Town Hall was unanimously acclaimed: ‘Yara Bernette has the most beautiful piano tone this listener has heard all winter. She is a clear-headed musician, moreover with an intelligent approach to her art. There is temperament in her too, and warmth. Everything is beautiful in detail and sensible in conception’ (Virgil Thompson, New York Herald Tribune).

When this recording – her only one for Deutsche Grammophon – was issued on LP, playing time limitations meant that three of the Preludes had to be excluded from the record – Op. 23 No. 3 and Op. 32 Nos. 11 and 13. Bernette’s suggestion that the recording be spread across two LPs in order to accommodate the additional playing time required was not agreed to by the company. The ‘missing’ preludes are now restored and re-inserted into the original sequence and Yara Bernette’s recording of Rachmaninov’s two opuses is presented complete for the first time.

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Australian Eloquence - ELQ4826031

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Fritz Wunderlich – Immortal Beloved

Fritz Wunderlich – Immortal Beloved


Beethoven:

An die ferne Geliebte (To the distant beloved), Op. 98

Heinrich Schmidt (piano)

Haydn:

Ein Wandrer kommt von ferne, Hob.XXXIb:3

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Fließ leise mein Bächlein, Hob.XXXIa/253 A

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Ich stehe auf der Heide, Hob.XXXIb:27

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Es weiden meine Schafe, Hob.XXIa

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Im Schummern, da kam ich einst zu dir, Hob.XXXIb:36

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Mein süßes Liebchen, Hob.XXXIa:194

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Rose weiss Rose rot, Hob.XXXb:10

Heinrich Schmidt (piano), Walter Weller (violin), Ludwig Beinl (cello)

Strauss, R:

Heimliche Aufforderung, Op. 27 No. 3

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Jan Koetsier

Ich trage meine Minne, Op. 32 No. 1

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Jan Koetsier

Ständchen, Op. 17 No. 2

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Jan Koetsier

Morgen, Op. 27 No. 4

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Jan Koetsier

Zueignung, Op. 10 No. 1

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Jan Koetsier


‘It was altogether shocking how absolutely wonderful his voice sounded … so unique, so individual, so clear and authentic – a voice that could be compared to no other.’ Rolando Villazón

‘What he did – there was no one who came close to him. I don’t think he will ever be surpassed.’ Nicolai Gedda

‘The sheer quality of his incredible voice is unique and will always be unique. Fortunately, there is the medium of the gramophone record.’ Peter Schreier

During the eleven years of his career, Wunderlich became a versatile lyric tenor who combined opulence of tone with intellectual weight. After some deliberation he turned to the heavier types of heroic roles before being invited to sing Walther von Stolzing in Wieland Wagner’s production of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg at Bayreuth. Although his repertoire included Rossini, Donizetti, Strauss, Pfitzner, Stravinsky, Egk, Orff and many oratorio parts, he is chiefly remembered, in the recordings bequeathed to posterity, as a singer of Lieder and an exponent of Mozartian roles (Belmonte, Tamino, Don Ottavio, Ferrando). He breathed fascinating life into these roles with his cultivated tone, refinement, stylistic awareness, intensity and intelligence.

These recordings – partly ‘live’ (Beethoven, Haydn), partly studio (Strauss) – enshrine many of Wunderlich’s quality as a Lieder singer par excellence. Although previously released on Philips CD, for this Eloquence release, the recordings were re-mastered from the original tapes.

“Few performances of An die ferne Geliebte are guilelessly beautiful. Haydn's Scottish and Welsh Folksongs are animated and engaging, with a selection of Strauss Lieder as dessert.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2017 *****

“This [recording] will inform those who come fresh to his singing of his sappy tenor and eager, unaffected, articulate way of using it. These attributes are most apparent in the Beethoven cycle for which he had the almost ideal tone. This is the longing, ardent admirer of the distant beloved to the life. Wunderlich phrases this ever-attractive cycle with a secure legato, a keen feeling for the text and a natural buoyancy that produce the right sense of art concealing art … The charming Haydn settings of Scottish and Welsh folk-songs are just as admirable, especially “Mein süßes Liebchen” where the serenader, out in the frost and snow of winter, begs to be let into his lover's chamber: Wunderlich sings it with just the right brio” Gramophone Magazine, January 1989

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4826526

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Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Mozart: Requiem in D minor, K626

Completed by Franz Xaver Süssmayr


Werner Pech (treble), Hans Breitschopf (alto), Walther Ludwig (tenor) & Harald Pröglhöf (bass)

Wiener Hofmusikkapelle & Wiener Philharmoniker, Josef Krips

FIRST INTERNATIONAL RELEASE ON CD

The version of Mozart’s Requiem most frequently performed today – and heard on this recording – is Süssmayr’s completion. Many have labelled his edition as a rushed, student effort (his own opera, Moses, was postponed due to his working on the Requiem), while others believe that no new edition or reworking, irrespective of how learned the scholar or composer, could ever replace the contemporaneous expressions inherit in Süssmayr’s score.

What is, however, unusual, is this 1950 recording with the Wiener Philharmoniker under Josef Krips, receiving its first international release on CD. It is of particular interest because of the employment of young Warner Pech and Hans Breitschopf – treble and alto respectively – in place of the usual soprano and mezzo soloists. Along with the Wiener Hofmusikkapelle, this all-male recording incorporates a compelling peculiarity to an already intriguing masterpiece.

“This really is a performance in church, so to speak, and it is wholly free from operatic vices … The intimate note is struck at the outset … The soft end of Rex tremendae is most moving … The sotto voce singing of sopranos and altos in the quiet portions of Confutatis are angelically beautiful … and [this recording contains] a great deal of magical sound.” Gramophone Magazine, January 1951

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Australian Eloquence - ELQ4826530

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