> Listing of New Classical CD Reviews - November 2002 latest reviews- (last two days): MusicWeb: Len Mullenger

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Thursday October 31st

DAILY CD REVIEWS - No other web-site offers as many new reviews as MusicWeb

STOP PRESS: The Gerard Hoffnung Oxford Union (Bricklayer) speech is at last available on CD
                     "Standing among savage scenery, the hotel offers stupendous revelations.
                     "There is a French widow in every bedroom, affording delightful prospects."


New EMI British Collections:
Britten (8CD) Elgar Orchestral (7CD) Elagr Choral and Vocal (13CD) Vaughan Williams (9CD) Barbirolli collection (13CD) Best of British (13CD) See Christmas Boxed Sets

Nikolai MIASKOVSKY A Survey of the Chamber Works, Orchestral Music and Concertos on Record By JONATHAN WOOLF

Hans-Theodor Wohlfahrt on Maxim Vengerov

The Art Nouveau of Orchestral Sound by Arthur Butterworth

Sir Ivor Atkins by David Wright

Programme Notes by Paul Serotsky

Marion Scott Website

Composer of the Week: ARNOLD BAX by Marshall Walker


Details of the latest releases from EMI Great Recordings of the Century and
Great Conductors of the 20th Century
(reviews to follow)

Bartok by David Wright

Sir Arthur Bliss by John France

Enrique Mario Casella by Lucio J. Bruno-Videla




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LATEST CD REVIEWS (last two days)

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Frédéric CHOPIN (1810-1849) - A QUINTET OF CHOPIN PRELUDES - 24 Preludes, op. 28
Craig Sheppard (pianoforte) with CHOPIN - Prelude in c sharp, op. 45 - Alexander SCRIABIN 24 Preludes, op. 11 - Recorded live in the Meany Theatre, University of Washington, Seattle - 4th October 1994 (Chopin), 1st May 1995 (Scriabin) AT 00-00549 [74’00"]
Nina Milkina (pianoforte) with CHOPIN - Nocturne in c sharp, op. posth. - Recorded at the Bishopsgate Institute, London, 1977 UNTERSCHRIFT CLASSICS (no number) [44’46"]
Artur Rubinstein (pianoforte) with CHOPIN - Sonata no. 2 op. 35, Berceuse op. 57, Barcarolle op. 60 - Recorded 10th, 11th, 20th June 1946 (Preludes), 11th, 18th, 29th March 1946 (Sonata), 20th June 1946 (Berceuse), 28th August 1946 (Barcarolle), location not given BMG CLASSICS – RCA VICTOR GOLD SEAL GD60047 [70’26"] [CH]

Summary: A strong recommendation for Nina Milkina’s little-known set; Cortot should be heard if you are at all tolerant of "historical" sound. And one or even two versions of these pieces are not enough … See Full Review

Madeleine DRING (1923-1977) Chamber works and songs - Trio for flute, oboe and piano - Trio for oboe, bassoon and keyboard - Danza Gaya - Polka for flute and piano - Italian Dance - Colour Suite - Five Betjeman Songs Joanne Boddington (flute) - Jane Finch (oboe) - Martin Gatt (bassoon) - Margaret Lynn (piano) - Nicola Hollymann (soprano) - Recorded at St George's, Bristol, November 2000 MOBILE RECORDING COMPANY RECORDS MRCD1 [59.56] [AJD]

Lovely, melodious and memorable: who needs gloom and doom in their listening? … see Full Review

Maurice RAVEL (1875 – 1937) Piano Concerto for the Left Hand (1930). Richard STRAUSS (1864 – 1949) An Alpine Symphony (1915) - Robert Casadesus (piano) Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Dimitri Mitropoulos - recorded 19th August 1957 – Ravel and 19th August 1956 – Strauss in the Festspielhaus, Salzburg ORFEO C 586 021 B [63.08] [JP]

We are in Orfeo’s debt for allowing us to eavesdrop on these wonderful performances. … see Full Review

Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) Farnace (1727) - Francesco CORSELLI (1705-1778) Farnace (1739) - Furio Zanasi, baritone - Farnace; Adriana Fernández, soprano - Berenice; Sara Mingardo, contralto - Tamiri; Gloria Banditelli, contralto - Selinda; Sonia Prina, contralto - Pompeo; Cinzia Forte, soprano - Gilade; Fulvio Bettini, baritone - Aquilio Le Concert des Nations/Jordi Savall - Rec: October 2001, Teatro de la Zarzuela de Madrid ALIA VOX AV9822 [2:55:17] [KM]

Rare attractive music to which justice is done. … see Full Review

Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Parsifal (1878-82) - Amfortas: Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (bar) - Titurel: Hans Hotter (bass) - Gurnemanz: Gottlob Frick (bar) - Parsifal: René Kollo (ten) - Klingsor: Zoltan Kélémen (bar) - Kundry: Christa Ludwig (sop) - First Knight: Robert Tear (ten) - Second Knight: Herbert Lackner (ten) - Alstimme: Birgit Finnilä (con) - First Esquire: Rotrund Hansmann - Second Esquire: Marga Schiml - Third Esquire: Heinz Zednik - Fourth Esquire: Ewald Aichberger - Klingsor’s flower maidens: Lucia Popp; Alison Hargan; Anne Howells; Kiri Te Kanawa; Gillian Knight; Margarita Lilowa (sop) Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Sir Georg Solti - Recorded in the Sofiensaal, Vienna 1972 and DECCA 470 805-2 [4 CDs 260:10] [IL]

This new refurbishment of an acclaimed star-studded version of Wagner’s last opera sounds glorious and, for me, is only eclipsed by the DG recording. … see Full Review

Swiss Concertos of the Twentieth Century: Flute and Clarinet - Hermann HALLER (1914-2002) Flute and Clarinet Concerto (1961) [17.03] - Wladimir VOGEL (1896-1984) Flute Concertino (1979) [11.19] - Robert BLUM (1900-1994) Clarinet Concertino (1974) [11.29] - Hans SCHAEUBLE (1906-1988) Flute Concertino (1959) [15.58] - Philipp Jundt (flute) - Elisabeth Häfliger (clarinet) - Camerata Zürich (strings)/Räto Tschupp - rec. Radio Studio, Zürich, Oct 2001 (Blum; Haller); Jan 2002 (Vogel; Schaeuble) GUILD GMCD 7250 [56.47] [RB]

The answer to 'what next after the Nielsen wind concertos' ... see Full Review

Antonín DVORÁK (1841-1904) Ten Legends, B122/Op. 59 (1881) Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra/David Zinman. First issued in 1984. [DDD] WARNER APEX 7559 79676-2 [41'43] [CC]

Disappointing, despite the price tag. … see Full Review

Percy TURNBULL (1902-1976) Songs and Part-Songs: Chloris in the Snow - In Fountain Court - A Boy’s Song - My Bed is a Boat - To Julia - When Daffodils begin to peer - Ejaculation to God - To God - Piping down the Valleys Wild - Cavalier - If Doughty Deeds - The Rainy Day - The Moon - The Moon (second setting) - The Reminder - The Reminder (second setting) - Guess, Guess - My Mopsa is Little - To Blossoms - The Shower - Cargoes - Where go the boats? - Take me to the North Countrie - You spotted snakes - There was as simple maiden - To Blossoms (second setting) - Nancy Argenta, soprano; Roderick Williams, baritone - Robin Bowman, piano; Alistair Young, piano (in "Where go the boats?") The Joyful Company of Singers, directed by Peter Broadbent - Solo songs recorded July and September 2000 at St. Philip’s Church, London, UK - Part-songs recorded in March 2000 at Southlands College, London, UK SOMM CELESTE SERIES SOMM 020 [51.08] [WH]

The singing on this disc brings great pleasure … see Full Review

Ernst Levy; Forgotten Genius plays Beethoven, Liszt and Levy - Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonata No 29 Op 106 Hammerklavier (1818) - Piano Sonata No 32 Op 111 (1822) - Franz LISZT (1811-1886) - Piano Sonata in B Minor S178 (1852-53) - Harmonies Poétiques et Religieuses No 3 Bénédiction de Dieu dans la solitude S173 (1845-52) - Années de Pèlerinage, Seconde Année No 1 Sposalizio S161 (1837-49) - Hungarian Rhapsody No 12 S244 (1846-85) - Ernst LEVY (1895-1981) - Pieces for Piano Nos 6, 7, 8, 9 and 18 Ernst Levy, piano - Recorded 1954-58 except Liszt’s Sposalizio recorded on a Sonabel 78 in 1928 MARSTON 52007-2 [2 CDs 156.59] [JW]

The fiery, dramatic, occasionally vexatious playing of Levy. … see Full Review

Ernst Levy 2; Forgotten Genius plays Haydn, Beethoven and Mozart - Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Piano Sonata No 31 Hob XVI/46 (1778) - Piano Sonata No 47 Hob XVI/32 (1776) - Piano Sonata No 60 Hob XVI/50 (c1794-1795) - Piano Sonata No 61 Hob XVI/51 (c1794-1795) - Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonata No 23 Op 57 Appassionata (1804) - Piano Sonata No 27 Op 90 (1814) - Piano Sonata No 28 Op 101 (1816) - Piano Sonata No 30 Op 109 (1820) - Piano Sonata No 31 Op 110 (1821-22) - Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Fantasy in D Minor K397 (1782 or 1786-87) - Johann STRAUSS II (1825-1899) Frühlingsstimmen Op 410 (1883) Ernst Levy, piano - Recorded on Unicorn Records 1956 (Haydn, Beethoven Sonatas Nos 23, 30, 31) 1958 (Beethoven Sonatas No 27, 28), Mozart and Strauss from Sonabel 78s recorded in c1929 MARSTON 52021-2 [2 CDs 79.26 and 71.33] [JW]

A pianist who demands to be heard. … See Full Review

The Piano G & Ts. Recordings from the Gramophone and Typewriter era (1900-1907); Alfred Grünfeld, Raoul Pugno and Natalia Janotha - Alfred GRÜNFELD (1852-1924) Serenade Op 32 - Etude a la tarantella Op 47/3 - Mazurka à la Viennoise Op 51 - Ungarische Fantasie Op 55 - Valse mignonne Op 51/4 - Romance Op 42 - Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Wohin - Die Forelle - Johann STRAUSS (1825-1899) Frühlingsstimmenwalzer arr Grünfeld - Georg Frederic HANDEL (1685-1759) Suite No 4 – Gavotte and Variations - Alessandro SCARLATTI (1660-1725) Sonata in a L495 - Raoul PUGNO (1852-1914) Impromptu valse - Valse lente - Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Waltz in A Flat Op 34/1 - Nocturne in F Sharp Op 15/2 - Impromptu in A Flat Op 29 - Berceuse in D Flat Op 57 - Sonata in B Flat Minor Op 35 – March funèbre - Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Songs without words Op 67/4 - Scherzo in E Minor Op 16/2 - Jules MASSENET (1842-1912) Valse folle - Emmanuel CHABRIER (1841-1894) Scherzo-valse - Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Fugue in A Minor - Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Songs without words Op 67/4 - Natalia JANOTHA (1856-1932) Polish carillon (extract) - Gavotte impériale Alfred Grünfeld, piano (all items from Grünfeld to Strauss) - Raoul Pugno, piano (all items from Handel to Mendelssohn’s Scherzo) - Natalia Janotha, piano (last four items) - Recorded Vienna, Paris and London 1903-1905 APR 5532 [77.13] [JW]

Incision, clarity of fingerwork and superb touch … see Full Review

There is Sweet Music: English Choral Songs 1890-1950 - Charles Villiers Stanford The Blue Bird; Quick we have but a second (arr.) - Frederick Delius: Two Unaccompanied part-songs - Edward Elgar: There is sweet music; My love dwelt in a Northern Land - Ralph Vaughan Williams: Three Shakespeare Songs - E.J. Moeran: The Sailor & young Nancy (arr.) - Percy Grainger: Brigg Fair (arr); Londonderry Air (arr.) - Edward T Chapman: The three ravens (arr.) - Gustav Holst: My sweetheart's like Venus (arr.) - Edward Bairstow: The oak and the ash (arr.) - Benjamin Britten: Five Flower Songs The Cambridge Singers: directed by John Rutter - Recorded in the Great Hall of University College School, London, February 1986 COLLEGIUM RECORDS CSCD 505 [56.27] [JF]

A good introduction to the English Choral Tradition from the first half of the 20th century … see Full Review




WILLIAM WALTON The Romantic Loner: A centenary portrait album by Humphrey Burton and Maureen Murray Published by Oxford University Press in January 2002 £25, hardback ISBN 0-19-816235-9 [DW]



Luigi CHERUBINI (1760-1842) Medea (1797) Maria Callas (Medea), Fedora Barbieri (Neris), Maria Luisa Nache (Glauce), Gino Penno (Giasone), Giuseppe Modesti (Creonte), Angela Vercelli (Prima ancella), Maria Amadini (Seconda ancella), Enrico Campi (Capo delle guardie) Chorus and Orchestra of La Scala, Milan/Leonard Bernstein - Recorded live 10th December 1953 at La Scala, Milan EMI CLASSICS CMS 5 67909 2 [2 CDs. 52’ 08", 77’ 11"] [CH]

The sparks fly between Callas and Bernstein and the set should be heard for its documentation of an extraordinary musical meeting, in quite passable sound. … see Full Review

James MACMILLAN (b. 1959) Magnificat (1999) Nunc dimittis (2000) Exsultet (1998/2000) Màiri (1997) The Gallant Weaver (1997) The Birds of Rhiannon (2001) Jonathon Scott (organ) BBC Singers – Stephen Betteridge (chorus-master) BBC Philharmonic – James MacMillan (conductor) Recorded Studio Seven, New Broadcasting House, Manchester, November 2001, DDD CHANDOS CHAN 9997 [70:30] [CT]

A highly recommended collection of recent works for choir and orchestra by MacMillan, magnificently performed by the BBC Philharmonic and the BBC Singers under the direction of the composer. … see Full Review

Domenico SCARLATTI (1685-1757) Sonatas: b minor K.129, G major K.146, C major K.132, E major K.162, A major K.24 Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943)
9 Etudes Tableaux op. 39, Prelude in g sharp minor, op. 32/12 Craig Sheppard (pianoforte) Recorded live, 25.02.1994 (Scarlatti), 02.03.2000 (Rachmaninov), Meany Theatre, University of Washington, Seattle AT 00-00118 [68.13] [CH]

Some wonderful pianism by one of the leading pianists of our times. … see Full Review

Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) The Film Music - Vol. 1 Scott of the Antarctic *(1948); The People’s Land (1942) ; Coastal Command (1943) Merryn Gamba (soprano) * Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus * BBC Philharmonic Orchestra/Rumon Gamba Recorded in New Broadcasting House, Manchester; 12 and 21 March 2002 CHANDOS CHAN 10007 [78:30] [IL]

An excellent introduction to RVW’s evocative film music … see Full Review

William WALTON (1902-1983) Piano Quartet (1918-21, rev. 1973/4) [29.16] Anon in Love for tenor and guitar (1959) [10.49] Valse (from Façade) arr. for solo piano (1923) [4.26] Passacaglia for solo cello (1979/80) [6.14] Sonata for Violin and Piano (1947-49, rev. 1949/50) [24.42] Nash Ensemble – Marianne Thorsen (violin) Lawrence Power (viola) Paul Watkins (cello) Ian Brown (piano) with John Mark Ainsley (tenor) Craig Ogden (guitar) Recorded at Potton Hall, Suffolk on 1-3 February and 20 March 2002 HYPERION CDA 67340 [75.56] [TH]

A superb disc that will have great appeal for the generalist and Walton specialist … see Full Review

Leontyne Price Rediscovered HANDEL , BRAHMS, GIORDANO, POULENC, BARBER, HOIBY, Spirituals, PUCCINI, CILEA Leontyne Price (soprano) David Garvey (piano) Recorded ‘live’ at Carnegie Hall, New York City on 28 February, 1965 RCA RED SEAL 09026 63908 2 [66’36] [JQ]

Recommended urgently to all lovers of the singing voice. If you only buy one disc of vocal music this year make sure it’s this one! … see Full Review




Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Clarinet Concerto (1947-48) - Four Dance Episodes from Rodeo (1942) - Sextet for string quartet, clarinet and piano (1937) - Quartet for piano and strings (1950) Richard Horsford (clarinet), Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Thierry Fischer (Concerto) Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, John Farrar (Rodeo) - Michael Collins (clarinet), Martin Roscoe (piano), Vanbrugh Quartet (sextet and quartet) - Recorded at Barking Assembly Hall, 1989 (Concerto), Winter Gardens, Bournemouth 1993 (Rodeo), Potton Hall, Suffolk, 1999 (sextet and quartet) ASV PLATINUM PLT 8504 [70.51] [TH]

A cheap way to get to know other aspects of this composer’s art. Recommended unreservedly. … see Full Review

Ferde GROFÈ Hollywood Suite; Hudson River Suite; Death Valley Suite   Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra conducted by William Stromberg   NAXOS 8.559017   [56:14] [IL]

Magnificent over-the-top; but hugely enjoyable, vividly descriptive music played with all the stops out by film music conductor Stromberg and recorded in some of the best Naxos sound I have yet heard. Don't hesitate, buy it before it sells out! ... see Full Review

George Frideric HANDEL (1685-1759) Concerti Grossi op. 3 (1710-1720) Concerto Grosso in F major op. 3 no. 4a, Concerto Grosso in D minor op. 3 no. 5, Concerto Grosso in D major op. 3 no. 6, Concerto Grosso in B flat major op. 3 no. 2, Concerto Grosso in G major op. 3 no. 3, Concerto Grosso in B flat major op. 3 no. 1 English Baroque Soloists/Sir John Eliot Gardiner Rec: March 1980, Henry Wood Hall, London.
WARNER APEX 0927 48682 2 [60.21] [KM]

This memorable recording is a must for lovers of Handel’s instrumental music. … see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No.9 in D Major (1908-9) Berliner Philharmoniker/Sir John Barbirolli (Recorded in the Jesus-Christus-Kirche, Berlin, on 10-11,14 & 18 January 1964) EMI GREAT RECORDINGS OF THE CENTURY 5 67925 2 [78.26] [TD]

If you don’t already own this great recording, one of the five or six best of this work ever taped, buy it immediately. It should be on every Mahlerite’s shelf. … see Full Review

Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Violin Concerto No. 1, Opus 19 (1917-23)* - Violin Concerto No. 2 (1935)* - Overture on Hebrew Themes, Opus 34b (1919)^ - March in B flat, Opus 99 (1944)^ - Schlomo Mintz (violin)* - Chicago Symphony Orchestra* - Chamber Orchestra of Europe^ Claudio Abbado*^ - Recorded February-March 1983, Orchestra Hall Chicago (Concertos); October November 1988, Konzertshaus Vienna (Overture, March) DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON MASTERS 445 607-2 [59.57] [TB]

Full of orchestral subtleties, well balanced, exotic, magical textures - an ideal foil to Mintz's beautifully toned solo line. of the First Concerto … see Full Review


Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Complete Piano Sonatas; Impromptus; Moments Musicaux various artists BRILLIANT CLASSICS 99798 [TH]

It is only fair to give this big undertaking a very warm welcome. … see Full Review





MusicWeb is planning its first recording of previously unrecorded orchestral pieces by Arthur Butterworth. If you would wish to part-sponsor that recording please contact len@musicweb-international.com

Did you know you could help sponsor a new recording for as little as £10 - a symphony for £25? such as this one  now reviewed here: GRAHAM WHETTAM  Sinfonia Intrepida   BBCSO/Sir Charles Mackerras.   Redcliffe Recordings RR016 (44' 11'') [PC] Read on

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