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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    


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ALPHABETICAL LISTING

 

Guy SACRE (b. 1948) Deuxième Sérénade (1982) [14.30] Variations sur une mazurka de Chopin (1989) [9.20] Chansons Enfantines (1978) [12.25] Piccolissima-Sérénade (1979) [12.14] Vingt-quatres Préludes (1980-83) [22.57] Billy Eidi (piano)
rec Théâtre de Poissy, Sept 1994 TIMPANI 1C1026 [71.21] [RB]

Fascinating and at times magical but not to be taken in a single listening gulp. Lovely playing by Billy Eidi. ... see Full Review
You can sample, download tracks or purchase this disc

Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921) Piano Concerto No.1 in D major Op.17 (1858) Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor Op. 22 (1868) Piano Concerto No.3 in E flat major Op.29 (1869) Piano Concerto No.4 in C minor Op.44 (1875) Piano Concerto No.5 in F major Op.103 (1896) Wedding Cake for piano and strings Op.76 (1886) Rapsodie d’Auvergne Op.73 (1884) Allegro appassionato Op.70 (1884) Africa Op.89 (1891) Stephen Hough (piano) [TH]

A credit to this brave and enterprising label. Go on, treat yourself - you won’t regret it. … see Full Review

Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921) Piano Concerto No.1 in D Major, Op. 17 (1858) Piano Concerto No.2 in G Minor, Op. 22 (1868);Piano Concerto No.3 in E-flat Major, Op. 29 (1869); Piano Concerto No.4 in C Minor, Op. 44 (1875); Piano Concerto No.5 in F Major, Op. 103 (1896); Philippe Entremont (piano) L’Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse/Michel Plasson - No recording details ADD SONY ESSENTIAL CLASSICS SB2K89977 [2CDs: 64.46 : 70.26] [TH]

Spend a bit more and you will get far more from these life-enhancing works. … see Full Review

Joly BRAGA SANTOS (1924-1988) Concerto for Strings in D (1951) [19.39], Sinfonietta for Strings (1963) [18.09], Variations Concertantes for Strings and Harp (1967) [11.06], Concerto for Violin, Cello, Strings and Harp (1968) [18.57] - Bradley Creswick (violin) - Alexander Somov (cello) - Sue Blair (harp) Northern Sinfonia/Álvaro Cassuto - rec 26-28 Apr 2001, Jubilee Theatre, St Nicholas' Hospital, Gosforth, Newcastle, UK, DDD MARCO POLO 8.225186 [67.51] [RB]

Music largely of the knowing disillusion and violence of the 1960s and 1970s. Brace yourself! ... see Full Review

Franz Xaver SCHARWENKA (1850-1924) Piano Concerto No. 4 in F minor Op. 82 (1908) Emil Von SAUER (1862-1924) Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor (1885) Stephen Hough (piano) City of Birmingham SO/Lawrence Foster rec. 18-19 Dec 1994, Dudley Town Hall, Warwickshire The Romantic Piano Concerto series - Vol. No. 11 HYPERION CDA 66790 [69.41] [RB]

Delightful Sauer and a stomping OTT Scharwenka ... see Full Review

Alfred SCHNITTKE (1934-1998) Music for the Movies - My Past and Thoughts (1973); Agony (1974); The End of St. Petersburg (Ca. 1990); The Master and Margarita (1993); Rundfunkchor Berlin Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin/Frank Strobel - Recorded at Jesus-Christus-Kirche Berlin, Haus des Rundfunks Berlin April 9-10 1996, June 16-17 1998 and June 30 1999 DDD CPO 999 796-2 [60:07] [CT]

Four suites from Schnittke’s film music, which whilst variable in quality are nonetheless fascinating. … see Full Review

Arnold SCHOENBERG (1874-1951) Pelleas und Melisande, Op.5 (1905) - Orchestre de Paris/Daniel Barenboim - Verklärte Nacht, Op.4 (Version for String Orchestra, 1943) New York Philharmonic Orchestra/Pierre Boulez - Recorded June 1977, Paris (Pelleas), September 1973, New York (Verklärte Nacht) SONY ESSENTIAL CLASSICS SBK 63035 [71.32] [TH]

The subdued ending is truly ethereal, and Boulez coaxes playing of wonderful refinement and luminosity from the New York strings … see Full Review

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Symphony No. 3 in D major - Symphony No. 6 in C major Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra/Günter Wand - Rec 17-26 January 1983, Studio Stolberger Strasse, Cologne RCA VICTOR 09026 63942 2 [56.39] [TB]

Abundantly lively … a youthful vigour … see Full Review

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Sonatas for Pianoforte Paul Badura-Skoda, fortepiano Rec: December 1994, January 1996, April 1996, French Institute, Vienna. ARCANA A 408 [188.00] KM

A delight to listen to. … see Full Review
You can sample, download tracks or purchase this disc

Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856) Violin Concerto Antonin DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Violin Concerto Yehudi Menuhin, violin Philharmonic-Symphony Orchestra of New York conducted by John Barbirolli February 1938 (Schumann) Orchestra of Paris Conservatoire conducted by George Enescu February 1936 (Dvořák) NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.110966 [57’59] [JW]

Menuhin’s musicianship is admirable – beautifully equalized with a trill of electric velocity … see Full Review

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906 – 1975) Symphony No.5 in D minor Op.47 (1937) Symphony No.6 in B minor Op.54 (1939) Symphony Orchestra of the West German Radio/Rudolf Barshai Recorded: Philharmonie, Köln, 1995 and 1996 REGIS RRC 1075 [77:27] [HC]

Barshai had a long association with Shostakovich’s music which he thoroughly understands. … See Full Review

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906 - 1975) The Symphonies (Complete) - Nos. 1, 2 "To October", 3 "First of May", 4, 5, 6, 7 "Leningrad", 8, 9, 10, 11 "The Year 1905", 12 "The Year 1917" ("To the Memory of Lenin"), 13 "Babi Yar", 14, 15. WDR Symphony Orchestra/Rudolf Barshai, with WDR Chorus (Nos. 2, 3), Sergei Aleksashkin (bass, No. 13), Moscow Choral Academy (No. 13), Alla Simoni (sop., No. 14), Vladimir Vaneev (bass, No. 14) Recorded at Philharmonie, Koln, 10/94 (Nos. 1, 3), 1/95 (No. 2), 4/96 and 10/96 (No. 4), 7/95 and 4/96 (No. 5), 10/95 (No. 6), 9/92 (No. 7), 3/94 and 10/95 (No. 8), 7/95, 9/95 and 4/96 (No. 9), 10/96 (No. 10), 5/99 (No. 11), 9/95 (No. 12), 9/00 (No. 13), Sometime in 1999/2000 (No. 14), 6/98 (No. 15) Brilliant Classics 6324-1/11, Box of 11 CDs in individual cardboard sleeves, with booklet. [670 mins.] [PS]

Whether you’ve a Ph.D. in Shostakovich, or are still wearing your "L" plates, this is utterly essential listening - but be warned, you may have to mortgage the rabbit-hutch to afford it. ...see Full Review

RECORD OF THE MONTH Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1907-1975) Shostakovich: Symphony No. 11 in G minor Op. 103, The Year 1905 (1957) London Symphony Orchestra/Mstislav Rostropovich Recorded live March 2002, Barbican, London. LSO LIVE LSO0030 [72’24"] [MB]

A remarkable disc of a remarkable concert. World class playing allied with incredible musicianship. Certainly the finest recording of the modern era. … see Full Review

Bedrich SMETANA (1824-1884) The Bartered Bride: Overture Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Symphony no. 9 in e, op. 95 – "From the New World" Modest MUSSORGSKY (1839-1881) arr. Maurice RAVEL Pictures at an Exhibition Czech Philharmonic Orchestra/Karel Ančerl Recorded live 10.10.1958, Lugano, Switzerland For information visit www.aura-music.com AURA 151-2 [74’59"] [CH]

Fine performances, particularly the Mussorgsky, although they bring nothing new to the Ančerl discography. … see Full Review

Ethel SMYTH (1858-1944) Chamber Music Vols. 1 and 2 - Violin Sonata in A minor, Op. 7 (1887) - String Quintet in E major, Op. 1 (1883) - Cello Sonata in A minor, Op. 5 (1887) - String Quartet in E minor (1902/12) Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa, violin; Friedemann Kupsa, cello; Céline Dutilly, piano; Fanny Mendelssohn Quartet; Johanna Varner, cello (Op. 1)
Recorded in 1990 at Studio 3 of the Bavarian Radio, Munich, Germany TROUBADISC TRI-CD 03 (two discs) [54.33] [59.20] [WH]

 

Ethel SMYTH (1858-1944) Chamber Music and Songs Vol. 3 - Four Songs for mezzo soprano and chamber ensemble (1907) - Three Songs for mezzo soprano and piano (1913) - Double Concerto in A for violin, horn and piano (1926) Melinda Paulsen, mezzo soprano; Angela Gassenhuber, piano (songs); Renate Eggebrecht-Kupsa, violin; Franz Draxinger, horn; Céline Dutilly, piano (concerto) - Recorded in 1992 at Bauer Studios, Ludwigsburg, Germany TROUBADISC TRO-CD 01405 [61.37] [WH]

I urge those with an interest in twentieth century English music to try these performances for themselves. … see Full Review

RECORD OF THE MONTH Zygmunt STOJOWSKI (1870-1946) Piano Concerto No 1 in F sharp minor, Op. 3 [35.01] Piano Concerto No 2 in A flat major (Prologue, Scherzo and Variations), Op. 32 [33.01] Jonathan Plowright (piano) BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra conducted by Martyn Brabbins Recorded in the Caird Hall, Dundee, 6-7 June 2001 The Romantic Piano Concerto: Volume 28 HYPERION CDA67314 [68.12] [JQ]

Two marvellous, scandalously neglected romantic piano concertos. Rush out, buy it – and enjoy! … see Full Review

Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Suites 1 and 2 (1), Ragtime (1), Octet (1), Danses Concertantes (2), Dumbarton Oaks Concerto (2), Concerto in D (2), rehearsal extract (3) Orchestra della Radiotelevisione Svizzera Italiana/Igor Stravinsky - Recorded live 28.4.1955 (1), 29.4.1954 (2), 27.4.1954 (3), Teatro Kursaal, Lugano, Switzerland AURA AUR 164-2 [76’ 58"] [CH]

If you want a disc with which to relate to Stravinsky as a human being, this is it. … see Full Review

Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Stravinsky Collection Vol.1 Fireworks, The Faun and the Shepherdess, Suite No.1 for Small Orchestra, Two Poems of Verlaine, Three Pieces for Solo Clarinet, Pastorale, Pribaoutki, Suite No.2 for Small Orchestra, Song of the Volga Boatmen, Firebird Suite (1919), Susan Bickley (mezzo-soprano), Stephen Roberts baritone), William Preucil (violin), Andrew Simon (clarinet) Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
David Atherton Recorded in Tsuen Wan Town Hall, Hong Kong (no date) GMNC0101 [66.02]
Stravinsky Collection Vol.2 Four Norwegian Moods, Capriccio, Ode, Danses concertante, Peter Donohoe (piano) Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra David Atherton Recorded in Tsuen Wan Town Hall, Hong Kong, 4-6 July, 1995 GMNC0102 [56.03]
Stravinsky Collection Vol.3 Scherzo à la russe, Orpheus, Four Studies for Orchestra, Scènes de ballet Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra David Atherton Recorded in Tsuen Wan Town Hall, Hong Kong, July 1995 (Scherzo), April-May 1996 (rest) GMNC0103 [61.25] [TH]

Performances of such blazing intensity that they were not easily forgotten. … see Full Review

Arthur SULLIVAN (1842-1900) The Gondoliers, comic opera (1889) D'Oyly Carte Opera Company New Promenade Orchestra/Isidore Godfrey NAXOS 8.110209-10 [2CDs: 90.03] [RW]

Lively pace - particularly energetic and brisk … the playing is very acceptable, but with a ‘theatre pit’ ambience. … see Full Review

Otmar SUITNER - Eightieth Anniversary Special Edition - WEBER Overtures - TCHAIKOVSKY Serenade for Strings - Robert VOLKMANN Serenade No. 2 for strings - DVORÁK Symphonies 4 and 5 - BRUCKNER Symphony No. 5 - Hugo WOLF Penthesilea - symphonic poem - Hans PFITZNER Music for Käthchen von Heilbronn - Richard STRAUSS Fantasy - Die Frau ohne Schatten , Metamorphosen for 23 strings - Paul HINDEMITH Symphonic Metamorphoses on Themes by Weber - MOZART Concert arias - Max REGER Eine Balletsuite, Konzert im alten stil, Beethoven Variations - Engelbert HUMPERDINCK Hänsel und Gretel - Richard STRAUSS Salome - Juliane Koren; Frank Lienert (Pfitzner) Sylvia Geszty (Mozart) Karl Suske; Heinz Schunk (Reger Konzert) Renate Hoff; Renate Krahmer; Gisela Schröter; Ingeborg Springer; Peter Schreier; Theo Adam (Humperdinck) Christel Golz; Siw Ericsdottir; Friedericke Apelt; Eva Fleischer; Helmut Melchert; Heinz Hoppe; Harald Neukirch; Helmut Goldmann; Guntfried Speck; Hans-Joachim Rotzsch; Johannes Kemter; Ernst Gutstein; Günther Leib; Theo Adam; Rainer Lüdeke; Helmut Eyle; Fred Teschler (Salome) Staatskapelle Dresden - Staatskapelle Berlin - Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orkester Leipzig - Gewandhausorchester Leipzig - Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orkester Berlin - rec 1964-1990 ADD EDEL CLASSICS 0002442CCC [11CDs: 41.19+44.03+75.25+69.33+68.58+45.19+47.39+63.59+63.00+53.37+40.41] [RB]

This is a very diverse set and you will struggle in vain if you have to construct a theme other than ‘some of Herr Suitner’s recordings’. Its strengths lie in its diversity. ... see Full Review

Toru TAKEMITSU (1930-1996) Complete Piano Music (1952- 1990)Rain Tree sketch (1982); Les yeux clos I (1979) and II (1989); For Away (1973); Litany (1950-1989); Piano Distance (1961); Uninterrupted Rests (1952-59) Recorded at the ABC Studio Sydney 24th September 1990 Corona and Crossing (1962) works combined for piano and bowed cymbal (Rolf Gehlhaar) Recorded live at the Art Gallery of New South Wales 16th September 1990 Roger Woodward (piano) ABC CLASSICS 446 739-2 [78.29] [GH]

Woodward is a real Takemitsu expert who loves and understands this music, with its myriad difficulties … see Full Review

Piotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY Fantasy Overture Romeo and Juliet Symphony no 1 in G minor (Winter Daydreams) Prague Symphony Orchestra/Gaetano Delogu Recordings of live performances given in the Dvořák Hall, Prague, on 10 June 1996 SUPRAPHON SU 3256-2 031 [65:23] [AAS]

Delogu and his orchestra give a splendidly idiomatic performance of the work in a commendably live recording. … see Full Review
You may sample download or purchase this disc

Pyotr Ilych TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Eugene Onegin - Lyric scenes in three acts. Libretto by Tchaikovsky and Konstantin Shilovsky after the novel by Alexander Pushkin - Onegin (played by Michal Docolomanský):Bernd Weikl, Tatyana (played by Magdaléna Vásáryová):Teresa Kubiak, Lensky (played by Emil Horváth):Stuart Burrows, Olga (played by Kamila Magálová):Julia Hamari, Filipyevna (played by Vasta Fabiánová):Enid Hartle, Triquet (played by Frantisek Filipovský):Michel Sénéchal, Gremin (played by Premysl Kocí):Nicolai Ghiaurov, John Alldis Choir and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden Conducted by Sir Georg Solti DECCA 071 124-9 [117 mins] [IL]

A spellbinding production that is a real feast for the eye and the ear. … see Full Review

Peter Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) The Nutcracker - Ballet Choreography by Maurice Béjart and Marius Petipa Béjart Ballet Lausanne Orchestra Colonne/Edmón Colomer DVD Video Aspect Ratio 16:9; Stereo/Dolby Digital 5.0. TDK DV-BLBNC [103min (Ballet)+ 26min (Documentary)] [AB]

Overall the DVD is a good one, presenting well what was obviously a successful and well performed staging … see Full Review

Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Romeo and Juliet (1880) [19.50] Symphony No. 4 (1877) [44.05] Colorado SO/Marin Alsop rec Boettcher Hall, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, 8-10 Sept 2000 DDD NAXOS 8.555714 [63.56] [RB]

This is a young orchestra with a daring conductor prepared to take risks. The engineers have captured plenty of attack ... see Full Review

Pyotr Ilych TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Symphony No. 2 in C minor, Op. 17 "Little Russian" (1872, revised 1880) Serge PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Classical Symphony, Op. 25 (1917) Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra/Kurt Masur Date and location of recording not specified, first issued 1970. EDEL CLASSICS 0002472CCC [44.07] [WH]

Very little in the way of a smile in this music-making … see Full Review

Georg Philip TELEMANN (1681-1767) Sinfonia Spirituosa in D TWV 44:1 for 2 violins, viola and basso continuo;Overture (Suite) in D TWV 55:D6 for viola da gamba concertata, strings and basso continuo; Concerto in C TWV 40:203 for 4 solo violins; Concerto in A TWV 54:A1 for 4 violins, strings and basso continuo; Concerto in G TWV 40:201 for 4 solo violins; Concerto in A ("Die Relinge") TWV 51:A4 for Violino principale, 3 violins, viola and basso continuo; Concerto in D TWV 40:202 for 4 solo violins; Symphony in D TWV Anh. 50:1 for the centenary of the Hamburg Trade deputation - Jaap ter Linden, viola da gamba Musica Antiqua Köln/Reinhard Goebel - Recorded Köln, Deutschland Radio, Sendesaal, September and November 2001 ARCHIV 289 471 492 [74:07] [GPJ]

Treat yourself to this – you’ll be very glad you did! … see Full Review

Georg Philipp TELEMANN (1681-1767) Suite in A minor for Recorder, Concerto in C major for Recorder, Concerto in E minor for Recorder and Flute *, Concerto in F major for Recorder Daniel Rothert, Recorder Elke Martha Umbach, Flute * Cologne Chamber Orchestra Helmut Muller-Bruhl Recorded at the DeutschlandRadio, Funkhaus, Sendesall, December 2000 NAXOS 8.554018 [64’33] [JW]

Pleasures galore to be had … inimitable and infectious … see Full Review

Ambroise THOMAS (1811-1896) Mignon - Lucile Vignon (Mignon, mezzo-soprano), Alain Gabriel (Wilhelm Meister, tenor), Annick Massis (Philine, soprano), Jean-Philippe Courtis (Lothario, bass), Franck Cassard (Frédéric, tenor) Chœurs du Théâtre Français de la Musique,
Ensemble Orchestral Harmonia Nova/Stéphane Denève - Recorded live 22th, 22nd and 24th Novembre 1996, Théâtre Impérial de Compiègne ACCORD 206552 [2 CDs: 76’ 46", 75’ 48"] [CH]

A decent, slightly sleepy, provincial performance. Readers are alerted to the fact that Sony are reissuing their 1978 recording of this once-famous opera with Marilyn Horne. … see Full Review

Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Die Walküre - Siegmund: Lauritz Melchior (ten), Wotan: Friedrich Schorr (bar), Brünnhilde: Kirsten Flagstad (sop), Sieglinde: Lotte Lehmann (sop), Hunding: Emanuel List (bass), Fricka: Karin Branzell (cont). Orchestra and Vocal Ensemble of the Metropolitan Opera, New York. Cond. Erich Leinsdorf. Rec. From Live Broadcasts on February 19th and March 30th 1940. Immortal Performances Series GUILD HISTORICAL GHCD 2215-2217 [3hrs 27.16min] [RJF]

Wagnerians, and others, used to listening to live performances from this period will find much to enjoy. ... see Full Review

Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) Orchestral and choral music - Symphony No. 6 in E minor (1947)¹ - including original and revised scherzo*; A Song of Thanksgiving (1944)²; The Lark Ascending³ (1914); London Symphony Orchestra¹; London Philharmonic Orchestra²³; Luton Choral Society/Luton Girls' Choir (conducted by Arthur Davies) ²; Jean Pougnet, violin³; Betty Dolemore, soprano²; Robert Speaight, narrator²; Harry Gibb, organ² Sir Adrian Boult, conductor¹²³ Recorded in Studio 1, Abbey Road, London, 23rd-24th February 1949¹ (15th February 1950*), 18th December 1950², 21st October 1952³. DUTTON CDBP 9703 [68.53] [NH]

Another example of Boult's unique way with VW, made even more valuable by A Song of Thanksgiving.….. see Full Review

Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) English Folk Song Suite (orch. Gordon Jacob) (1923) Symphony No. 3 A Pastoral Symphony (1916-21) Symphony No. 4 in F Minor (1931-34) Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley Recorded in the Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool, 30 November - 1 December, 1990 and 8-9 March 1991 [DDD] CLASSICS FOR PLEASURE 7243 5 75310 2 3 [77:45] [CT]

Handley’s magnificent readings of VW’s third and fourth symphonies make this disc essential both for collectors and newcomers. At super budget price it is also an out and out bargain. … see Full Review

Giuseppe VERDI (1813-1901) Simon Boccanegra - Simon Boccanegra - Gordon Hawkins; Jacopo Fiesco - Vladimir Vaneev; Paolo Albiani - Yaron Windmüller; Pietro - Martin Snell; Amelia Grimaldi - Nuccia Focile; Gabriele Adorno - Paul Charles Clarke; Amelia’s Maid - Wendy Dawn Thompson; Chapman Tripp Opera Chorus New Zealand Symphony Orchestra/Marco Guidarni - Recorded live in the Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington, New Zealand, 10-12 March 2000 MORRISON MUSIC TRUST MMT 2045-46 [2CDs: 75.36+64.01] [TH]

With the frisson of live recording and none of the drawbacks, as well as first-rate digital sound, this set can confidently be recommended on all counts. … see Full Review

Giuseppe VERDI (1913-1901): La Forza del Destino (complete) Donna Leonora - Maria Caniglia, Don Alvaro - Galliano Masini, Don Carlo di Vargas - Carlo Tagliabue, Padre Guardiano - Tancredi Pasero, Preziosilla - Ebe Stignani, Fra Melitone - Saturno Meletti, Il marchese di Calatrava - Ernesto Dominici, Curra - Liana Avagrado, Mastro Trabucco - Giuseppe Nessi, Un alcade - Ernesto Dominici, Un chirurgo - Ernesto Dominici Turin Chorus and Symphony Orchestra EIAR, Turin/Gino Marinuzzi - Recorded in 1941 (ADD) NAXOS 8.110206-07 [2 CDs: 2:33:39] [CMG]

Few will dispute the effectiveness of Caniglia's middle register, or her often striking chest tones, or her intense reading of the line and attention to words. … see Full Review

Louis VIERNE (1870-1937) Symphony in A minor (1908) [38.48] Poème for piano and orchestra (1924) [22.23] François Kerdoncuff (piano) Orchestre Philharmonique de Liège/Pierre Bartholomée rec 25-29 June 1996, Salle du Conservatoire Royal, Liège, France TIMPANI 1C1036 [61.32] [RB]

A positively confident symphony in the Franck-Elgar mode. Poème, touched with orientalism, a conjunction of subtle and obvious. Intriguing all the same. ... see Full Review
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Louis VIERNE (1870-1937) The works for solo piano CD1 Twelve Preludes Op. 30 (1914-15) Silhouettes d'Enfant Op. 43 (1918) Deux Pièces Op. 7 (1893)] Le Glas Op. 39 (1916) CD2 Three Nocturnes Op. 35 (1915) Suite Bourguignonne Op. 17 (1899) Solitude Op. 44 (1918) Olivier Gardon (piano) rec.May/July 1994, Théâtre de Poissy DDD TIMPANI 2C2023 [2CDs: 67.53+71.27] [RB]

It says much about Vierne that the many tragedies that struck him with such force did not leave him taciturn or silent but reaching out to us now with a contemporary force. Performances to match. ... see Full Review
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Louis VIERNE (1870-1937) The chamber works CD1 Violin Sonata Op. 23 (1907) [34.31] Rhapsodie for solo harp Op. 25 (1909) [10.44] Piano Quintet Op. 42 (1917) [30.23] Le Soir for viola and piano Op.5 (1895) [4.01] CD2 Légende(suite) for viola and piano Op. 5 (1895) [1.56] Cello Sonata Op. 27 (1910) [23.44] Largo et Canzonetta for oboe and piano Op.6 (1896) [6.15] Soirs Étrangers for cello and piano (1928) Op. 56 [26.31] String Quartet Op. 12 (1894) [21.04] Quatuor Phillips CD1: François Kerdoncuff (piano); Alexis Galpérine (violin); Pascale Zanlonghi (harp); Odile Carracilly (viola) CD2: Olivier Gardon (piano); Yvan Chiffoleau (cello); Christian Moreaux (oboe) rec Op. 23 Salle Adyar 6-8 June 1990; Opp.27/56 Salle Adyar 20-22 Mar 1991; Opp. 5/25 Théâtre de Poissy 25 Aug 1993; Opp. 6, 12, 42; 17-20 Sept 1993. DDD TIMPANI 2C2019 [2CDs: 79.40+78.52] [RB]

A de rigueur purchase and certainly a generous one. Essential listening for the sonatas, quintet and the Rhapsodie. Otherwise never less than pleasing. Everything is presented to Timpani's accustomed high standards. ... see Full Review
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Louis VIERNE (1870-1937) Mélodies Spleens et Détresses (1916) Quatres Poèmes Grecs (1930) Cinq Poèmes de Baudelaire (1921) Mireille Delunsch (sop) Christine Icart (harp) (Grecs) François Kerdoncuff (piano) rec 24/26 July 1997, Salle Franklin, Bordeaux, France TIMPANI 1C1040 [61.30] [RB]

A delightful disc. If in a hurry then do sample the Greek Poems. I think you will be won over ... see Full Review
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Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741)12 Sonatas for Violin and Continuo Opus 2 Cordaria, Walter Reiter, violin.Rec: May and August, 1998. SIGNUM SIGCD014 [106.34] [KM]

An excellent recording of some of Vivaldi's earliest works. Far from being immature works, these sonatas take on a new dimension in this performance. Highly recommended. ...see Full Review [KM]
An enjoyable disc which encourages interest in the work and should prompt further and more varied recorded interpretations. … see Full Review [AR]
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WAGNER Richard (1813-1883) Overtures to Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Tristan und Isolde, Tannhäuser, Der Fliegende Holländer STRAUSS Richard (1864-1949) Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, op. 28 Czech Philharmonic Orchestra/Franz Konwitschny Recorded in the Dvorak Hall of the Rudolfinum, Prague, 1952 (Strauss) and 1960 (Wagner) Supraphon SU 2469-2 011 [58’ 13"] [CH]

The Wagner is very fine but the real reason for getting this is the Till. ... See Full Review
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William Vincent WALLACE (1812-1865) Meeting of the Waters - Celtic fantasies Rosemary Tuck (piano) Rec. The Reception Room, City Hall, Waterford, Ireland, October 2001 CALA-UNITED CACD 88042 [78.32] [RW]

Virtuoso skills in music of particular charm all too-long neglected. … see Full Review

William WALTON (1902-1983) The Walton Centenary Edition Symphony No. 1 (1932-35) [45.02] Symphony No. 2 (1956) [28.09] Cello Concerto (1956) [28.37] Violin Concerto (1940) [31.47] Scapino (1939) [8.07] Facade Suites Nos 1 and 2 (1922) [21.56] Hindemith Variations (1963) [24.37] Crown Imperial (1937) [6.57] Belshazzar's Feast (1930) [33.45] Coronation Te Deum (1953) [10.26] Henry V Suite (1943, 1945) [16.46] Orb and Sceptre (1953) [7.43] Robert Cohen (cello) Tasmin Little (violin) Paul Neubauer (viola) Bryn Terfel (bar) Waynflete Singers, L'Inviti, Choir of Winchester Cathedral Bournemouth SO/Andrew Litton rec Nov 1993, Guildhall, Southampton (Cello; Sym 1); Mar 1994, (Scapino, Violin Sym 2); Mar 1996 (Viola, Façade, Hindemith), Winchester Cathedral, Feb 1995, May 1991 (Henry V, Marches, Belshazzar) DDD DECCA The British Music Collection 470 508-2 [4CDs: 73.57+68.31+71.25+78.51] [RB]

Cracking performances and recordings replete with a myriad enthralling details ... see Full Review

Carl Maria von WEBER (1786-1826) Piano Concerto No 1 in C major, Op.11 (1810) Piano Concerto No 2 in E flat, Op.2 (1812) Konzertstück Op.79 (1821) Nikolai Demidenko (piano) Scottish Chamber Orchestra/Charles Mackerras Rec. Usher Hall, Edinburgh, UK 1994 The Romantic Piano series: Vol. No. 10 HYPERION CDA 66729 [57.07] [RW]

First rate interpretation … subtle phrasing and enjoyable glissandos are charming. … see Full Review

Alexander ZEMLINSKY (1871-1942) Chamber Music for Strings String Quartet No. 1 (1896) String Quartet No. 2 (1913-15) String Quartet No. 3 (1924) String Quartet No. 4 Suite (1936) Maiblumen blühten überall for soprano and string sextet (Dehmel) (1898) Two Movements for string quartet (1927) Maiblumen: Susan Narucki (sop); Jan Erik van Regteren Altena (viola); Taco Kooistra (cello) Schoenberg Quartet rec Waalse Kerk, Amsterdam (2, 3), Nederlands Hervormde Kerk, Renswoude (all others); 14-15 Dec 1993 (1); 16-17 Dec 1993 (4); 14 Feb 1994 (Maiblumen); 15 Feb 1994 (Two Movements); 30 June-1 July 2000 (2); 16-17 Jan 2001 (3) DDD CHANDOS CHAN 9772(2) [79.14+67.45] [RB]

A set of princely accomplishment and sovereign presentation ... see Full Review

RECORD OF THE MONTH: Bernd Alois ZIMMERMANN (1918-70) Die Soldaten, an opera in four acts after the play by Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz; Mark Munkittrick (Wesener); Nancy Shade (Marie Wesener); Milagro Vargas (Charlotte, her sister); Grace Hoffmann (Wesener’s mother); Michael Ebbecke (Stolzius, her betrothed); Elsie Maurer (Stolzius’s mother); William Cochran (Desportes); Alois Treml (Obrist); Gregor Brodocz (Gamekeeper); Guy Renard (Pirzel); Karl-Friedrich Dürr (Eisenhardt); Klaus Hirte (Haudy); Raymond Wolansky (Major von Mary); Ursula Koszut (Countess de la Roche); Jerrold van der Schaaf (the young Count); Johannes Eidloth, Robert Wörle, Helmut Holzapfel (Young Officers); Stuttgart State Opera Chorus, Staatsorchester Stuttgart/Bernhard Kontarsky Harry Kupfer (director) Wolf Münzner (sets and costumes) Hans Hulscher (video director) ARTHAUS DVD 100 270 [111’] [PQ]

Die Soldaten - the only game in town – and its dark message and unsettling music demand to be heard. … see Full Review

 

 

 


[Detailed listing (last two days)]
[Part 1 New]  [Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
[Part 4 M-R]  [Part 5 S-Y] [Part 6 Misc] 
[Part 7 Misc]

 

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