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Wed-Fri July 27-29th


DAILY CD REVIEWS



Hoffnung Music Festivals 1956,58,61
2CDs:£17 postage included World-Wide [mono/stereo]
This is a must for all Hoffnung enthusiasts.
Purchase here    see review

Hoffnung - A Last Encore
On 2 CDs lasting 1 hour 45min, this contains all the recordings of Hoffnung preserved in the BBC archives. They include the famous and hilariously funny Bricklayer story. [mono]
£14 postage included world-wide Purchase


Visit the HOFFNUNG EXHIBITION at the Frome Festival - July 1-10 2005

ADVANCE NOTICE MALCOLM ARNOLD FESTIVAL 2006 to coincide with Sir Malcolm's 85th Birthday

William Alwyn Centenary Year News of recordings and Concerts

 

NEW and RECENT ARTICLES

'Sun loungers were available for the fatigued outside the hall, although these were quickly bagged by the Germans.' - Wagner, 'The 24 Hour Ring' Tiroler Festspiele, Erl, Austria - Soloists, Tiroler Festspiele Orchestra and Chorus, Gustav Kuhn, 22nd to 24th July 2005 (BK)

INTERVIEW: Towards the Edinburgh Isolde: an in-depth interview with US soprano Christine Brewer by David Harbin © July 2005

Bach Without Fear
Who is entitled to play Bach? The music director of a period-instrument orchestra reclaims baroque music for modern players.
By Nicholas McGegan

Jaroslav Krombholc - An Anniversary Remembrance by Alan Watkins

MusicWeb Reviewer’s Log: June/July 2005 Reviewer: Patrick C Waller

by Frank T. Manheim: The Pace of Classical Music Reform Increases in the UK and the USA

 

 

MENDELSSOHN The Complete Quartets This magnificent set of the complete Mendelssohn String Quartets would have been my first choice selection even at full price... but you will have to read the review to see who is being referred to - a comparative review by Michael Cookson: Pacifica Quartet, Emerson Quartet, Henschel Quartet, Talich Quartet, Aurora String Quartet, Bartholdy Quartet


George Enescu: a fiftieth anniversary commemoration through recordings
Part II: Enescu the performer: violinist, conductor and pianist

'How do we compare honest chalk with good ripe Stilton exactly?' - BBC Cardiff Singer Of The World

 

Three emigrés: Gál, Gerhard and Goldschmidt by Guy Rickards 2005 Update
Avie Special Offer The Complete Piano Works by Hans Gal played by Leon McCawley:- 3-CD set available September 2005
Pre-order your copy now and receive a 33% discount off the recommended retail price of £30.00 - ORDER NOW AND PAY ONLY £20.00.

Michael TIPPETT: Music and Literature Edited by Suzanne Robinson Contributions by: Michael Tippett, Edward Venn, Sean Flanagan, Suzanne Robinson, Lewis Foreman, Suzanne Cole, Arnold Whittall, Barbara Docherty, Rowena Harrison and Meinhard Saremba. £50 £20 post free Review (offer expires Sept 30th)
LIMITED SPECIAL BOOK OFFER
- make sure you use this link and not the one on the review

Details of the new DVD releases of the Deutsche Grammophon Unitel range

SHEET MUSIC C.F. Peters - 20% OFF ALL TITLES
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For the first time ever over 15,000 C.F. Peters items are on sale for 20% off! C.F. Peters publishes a diverse collection that ranges from early Renaissance to avant-garde compositions of today. There is something available for nearly every level and instrument. Sale ends July 28, 2005.


LATEST CD REVIEWS (last two days)
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Frank BRIDGE (1879-1941) Blow out; you bugles H.132 (1918) [05:38] (1); Adoration H.57 (1905/1918) [02:58] (1); Where she lies asleep H.114 (1914) [03:03] (1); Love went a-riding H.115 (1914) [01:41]; Thy hand in mine H.124 (1917/1923) [02:12] (1); Berceuse H.9 (1901) [05:09] (2); Mantle of Blue H.131 (1918/1934) [02:49] (2); Day after day H.164(i) (1922) [04:55]; (2); Speak to me; my love! H.164(ii) (1924) [06:00] (2); Berceuse H.8 (1901/1902/1928) [03:26]; Chant d’espérance H.18(ii) (1902) [03:45]; Serenade H.23 (1903) [02:53]; The Pageant of London; Suite for Wind Orchestra H.98 (1911) [15:11]; A Royal Night of Variety H.184 (1934) [01:27] Sarah Connolly (mezzo-soprano) (2), Philip Langridge (tenor) (1) BBC National Orchestra of Wales/Richard Hickox Recorded 23rd and 24th October 2004, Brangwyn Hall, Swansea, Wales CHANDOS CHAN 10310 [61:13] [CH]

This final issue in the Chandos cycle contains mainly smaller pieces but the songs, in particular, have much to offer. ... see Full Review

John CORIGLIANO (b. 1938) Clarinet Concerto (1977)a [28:51] ZHOU Long (b. 1953) The Immortal (2004)b [12:51] Kaija SAARIAHO (b. 1952) Orion (2002)c [23:07] Michael Collins (clarinet)a BBC Symphony Orchestra/Leonard Slatkinab, Jukka-Pekka Sarastec Rec. (live) Royal Albert Hall, July 2004 (Zhou Long); Sept 2004 (Corigliano, Saariaho) WARNER CLASSICS 2564 61952-2 [64:51] [HC]

Excellent performances making up an attractive and varied programme of accessible music that fully repays repeat hearings. ... see Full Review

Charles IVES (1874-1954) A Continuum Portrait 3: Piano, Chamber, and Vocal Works The Housatonic at Stockbridge (1908) [3:24] Soliloquy, or a Study in 7ths and Other Things (c. 1916-17) [0:49] On the Antipodes (c. 1922-23) [2:37] Victoria Villamil (soprano); Cheryl Seltzer, Joel Sachs (pianos); ensemble The Gong on the Hook and Ladder (original version) (c. 1912) [1:28] Hallowe’en (c. 1914) [2:33] In Re Con Moto et al (c. 1915-16) [3:02] Various members of the ensemble Sunrise (1926) [5:35] Sheila Schonbrun (soprano); Mia Wu (violin); Cheryl Seltzer (piano) Remembrance (1921) [1:01] Sheila Schonbrun (soprano); Eva Gruesser (violin); Cheryl Seltzer (piano) Aeschylus and Sophocles (1922- c. 1924) [4:10] Sheila Schonbrun, Victoria Villamil (sopranos); ensemble Five Take Offs (c. 1906-09) [12:54] Joel Sachs (piano) Three Quarter-Tone Pieces (1923-24) [11:22] Joel Sachs, Cheryl Seltzer (pianos) Continuum/Cheryl Seltzer; Joel Sachs (Directors) Recorded at Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, NYC in June 1986 and Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN in September 1987 NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559194 [48:52] [SM]

A compelling listening experience, and recommended to all those who are interested in Ives’ music or twentieth century music in general. ... see Full Review

Harald SAEVERUD (1897 – 1992) Symphony No. 5 Quasi una fantasia Op.16 (1941) [24:32] Oboe Concerto Op. 15 (1939)a [17:37] Entrata regale Op. 41 (1960) [5:30]
Sonata Giubilata Op. 47 (1969) [9:59] Gordon Hunt (oboe)a Stavanger Symphony Orchestra/Ole Kristian Ruud rec. Stavanger Concert Hall, July 2000 (Symphony 5, Oboe Concerto); Aug 2000 (Entrata regale, Sonata Giubilata) BIS CD-1162 [59:11] [HC]

Music often understated avoiding grandiloquence. Speaks directly in a concise, "straight-to-the-point" manner ... one of its most endearing qualities. ... see Full Review

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No.2 in G major, Op.126 (1966) Symphony No.12 in D minor, Op.112 (1960-61) The Year 1917 (in Memory of Lenin) Jonathan Ayling (cello) London Shostakovich Orchestra/Christopher Cox. Recorded "live" in St. Cyprian’s Church, Glentworth Street, London, NW1 on November 13th, 2004 DUNELM RECORDS DRD0234 [78:14] [PS]

A "live" performance with all the problems that raises but these considerations are more than compensated for by the sense of occasion conveyed by this very recommendable release. ... see Full Review

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No.1 in E flat, Op.107 (1959) [28:46]*; Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No.2 in G major, Op.126 (1966) [35:50]** Jonathan Ayling (cello) London Shostakovich Orchestra/Christopher Cox. * Recorded "live" in St. Cyprian’s Church, Glentworth Street, London, NW1 on May 15th, 2004 ** Recorded "live" in St. Cyprian’s Church, Glentworth Street, London, NW1 on November 13th, 2004. DUNELM RECORDS DRD0233 [64:46] [IM]

A most moving and memorable CD. Highly recommended. ... see Full Review

Georges TACONET (1889-1962) Fourteen Songs Violin Sonata in D minor (1927) Dominique Méa (sop); Carlos Cebro (piano) Fanny Clamagirand (violin); Virginie Martineau (piano) rec. Centre François-Mitterand, Saralbe (Moselle), 15-17 July 2002 (songs); Salle Adyar, Paris 8-9 Feb 2003. MARCO POLO 8.225300 [65:14] [RB]

I was pleased to make Taconet's acquaintance - another of the neglecteds of France ... subtly fragranced songs and a sonata emotionally anchored by its substantial andante ... see Full Review

Carl Maria von WEBER (1786-1826) Oberon or The Elf King’s Oath - Romantic Opera in three acts (1826) Hillevi Martinpelto ... Reiza (soprano) Steve Davislim ... Oberon (tenor) Jonas Kaufmann ... Sir Huon of Bordeaux, Duke of Guienne (tenor) Marina Comparato ... Fatima (mezzo) William Dazeley ... Sherasmin (baritone) Frances Bourne ... Puck (mezzo-soprano) Katherine Fuge ... first Mermaid (soprano) Charlotte Mobbs ... second Mermaid (soprano) Roger Allam (narrator) Monteverdi Choir Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique/Sir John Eliot Gardiner Recorded at the Colosseum, Watford, England, 15-19 March 2002. DDD PHILIPS 475 6563 5 [60:57 + 61:47] [MC]

The playing and singing is beautifully tailored to the score ... an endless kaleidoscope of subtle colours ... a delightful experience ... see Full Review

Cantorial Concert Masterpieces David ROITMAN (1884 – 1943), orchestrated and arranged Larry SPIVACK Hayyom T’amtzeinu [5.14] (1) Israel SCHORR (1886 – 1935) Sheyyibane Beit Hammikdash [9.01] (2) Pierre PINCHIK (1893? – 1971) Der Khazn un der Gabe [5.08] (1) Pinchas JASSINOWSKY (1886 – 1954) , orchestrated Robert ELHAI The Prophecy of Isaiah [8.01] (5) David KUSEVITZKY (1911 – 1985), orchestrated Stanley SILVERMAN Ezrat [5.48] (1) Israel SCHORR (1886 – 1935), orchestrated and arranged Elli JAFFE Ribbon Ha’olamim [12.43] (1) Leib GLANTZ (1898 – 1964), orchestrated and arranged Larry SPIVACK Kol M’kaddesh [3.57] (1) Moshe GANCHOFF (1907 – 1997), orchestrated and arranged Steve BARNETT Hashir Shehalviyyim [9.09] (1) Zavel ZILBERTS (1881 – 1949), orchestrated and arranged Warner BASS Havdala [3.34] (3) Aaron TISHKOWSKY (1899 – 1972), arranged Maurice GOLDMAN, orchestrated Larry SPIVACK Hammavdil [5.28] (4) William BOGZESTER (1904 – 1970), orchestrated Steve BARNETT Psalm of David [9.34] (1) Cantor Benzion Miller (1, 5) Barcelona Symphony Orchestra(National Orchestra of Catalonia)/Elli Jaffe (2) Oxford Philomusica/Marios Papadopoulos (3) Barcelona Symphony Orchestra(National Orchestra of Catalonia)/Jorge Mester (4) Vienna Boys Choir/Chorus Viennensis/Vienna Chamber Orchestra/Gerard Wirth Recorded: (1, 3) Centre Cultural de Sant Cugat, Barcelona, May 2000 (2) The Warehouse, London, UK, November 1998 (5) Sala Sinfonical del Auditori, Barcelona, May 2001 (4) Baumgartner Casino, Vienna, Austria, May 2001 NAXOS 8.559416 [78.22] [RH]

Makes fascinating listening, opening up an area of musical repertoire which is probably quite unknown to many people. ... see Full Review

Music for Organ: Volume 5: Organ Music by Manchester Composers. John E. ELLIS (b.1943) Variations on ‘Veni Emmanuel’ (2002) Norman COCKER (1889-1953) Interlude*, Paean*, Angelus*, Trio*, Cradle Song** [* 1922; **1927] Ronald FROST (b.1933) Passacaglia for the birthday of St. Ann’s (1979) Ernest TOMLINSON (b.1924) Three Lyrical Pieces (1958) Douglas STEELE (1910-1999) Chorale Prelude – On Gibbons’ ‘Angel’s Song’ (1947) David ELLIS (b.1933) Vetrate di Ricercata (2002) Ronald Frost (organ, St. Ann’s Church, Manchester) Recorded in November 2002, January, February and July 2003. DUNELM RECORDS DRD0244 [67 39] [PS]

This is a desirable, varied and outstandingly interesting disc. ... see Full Review

BOOK REVIEW

Max Bruch - His Life and Works by Christopher Fifield 16 b/w illustrations 400 pages Size: 23 x 15 cm ISBN: 1843831368 Binding: Paperback First published in second edition: 2005 Price: 39.95 USD / 19.99 GBP [RB]

Fifield's humanising communicative faculty successfully elevates Bruch from the slough of one-work composers. ... see Full Review

IGOR STRAVINSKY - Orchestrations of The Song of the Flea by Modest Mussorgsky. The Song of the Flea by Ludwig van Beethoven. Publication and Commentary by Arkady Klimovitsky. St Petersburg: School of Music Publishing House (The Russian Institute for the History of the Arts), 2003 387 pages ISBN 5-9500057-1-6 $150 Includes a CD of historical recordings by Feodor Chaliapin [9:23] [LF]

All fascinated by Russian music and culture in the decade before the outbreak of the First World War will find much to please them ... see Full Review

 

Tuesday

Gaetano DONIZETTI (1797-1848) Maria Stuarda (1835) (sung in English)
Janet Baker (mezzo) Mary Stuart; Rosalind Plowright (soprano) Queen Elizabeth I; David Rendall (tenor) Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester; John Tomlinson (bass) George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury; Alan Opie (baritone) Sir William Cecil; Angela Bostock (soprano) Hannah Kennedy; Leigh Maurice (singer) Garter King at Arms Chorus and Orchestra of English National Opera/Charles Mackerras. Rec. London Coliseum in 1982. Producer John Copley. NTSC. 4:3. WARNER MUSIC VISION 504678028-2 [138'00] [CC]

If there is anyone out there who doubts that Donizetti can be a composer of real depth, buy this. It will change your mind. ... see Full Review

Johan JEVERUD (b. 1962) Piano Quintet (2002) [11:23] Two songs about the Flight of Time (2000): In a hundred years; The Genius of Youth [2:39 + 2:15] Piano Trio (2001) [14:41] Four songs by night: The crickets; Summer day II; The Romantic; Spring night [1:30 + 1:27 + 1:20 + 1:49] String Trio (1998) [16:11] Three Songs with texts by Bo Bergman (2003): Masque; Mystery; Foolish fire and the elf [247 + 2:52 + 2:57] Music for Bygone Parlours for piano (2001) [10:52] Uppsala Chamber Players: (Nils-Erik Sparf (violin); Patrik Swedrup (violin); Susanne Magnusson (viola); Lars Frykholm (cello); Bengt Åke Lundin (piano)) St Jacobs Chamber Choir/Gary Graden rec. Studio 2 Radiohuset, Stockholm, 28-31 Aug 2003, (chamber items and piano solo; 4-5 May 2004 (choral). DDD PHONO-SUECIA PSCD 152 [72:43] [RB]

A language that would have been instantly accessible to composers of the Franckian Belgian or French 19th century schools ... see Full Review

Earl KIM (1920-1998) Violin Concerto (1979) [22:21] Dialogues for piano and orchestra (1959) [9:12] Cornet for narrator and orchestra (1984) [25:43] Cecylia Arzewski (violin) William Wolfram (piano) Robert Kim (narrator) RTE National SO/Scott Yoo rec. National Concert Hall, Dublin, 31 May-1 June 2004. DDD NAXOS 8.559226 [57:16] [RB]

Kim’s Violin Concerto is the real draw here beside the sterile Dialogues and the passive but imaginatively illustrative Rilke melodrama. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH James MACMILLAN (b. 1959) Seven Last Words from the Cross (1993)* [46:24] On the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin (1997)** [6:41] Te Deum (2001)** [15:02] Polyphony; ** James Vivian (organ) *Britten Sinfonia/Stephen Layton Recorded* 1-2 April 2004 in St. Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb; ** The Temple Church, London. DDD HYPERION CDA67460 [68:35] [JQ]

Seven Last Words makes a profound impression; a masterpiece. I recommend this CD not just enthusiastically but urgently. ... see Full Review

Johann Simon MAYR (1763 – 1845) Sisara (1793) [93.36] Sisara – Vanessa Barkowski (mezzo-soprano) Jahel – Talia Or (soprano) Debbora, Thamar – Stefanie Braun (soprano) Barac, Elcana – Petra van der Mieden (soprano) Abra, Dina – Claudia Schneider (soprano) Simon Mayr Choir Accademia I Filarmonici di Verona/Franz Hauk Recorded Asam Kirche Maria de Victoria Ingolstadt, 9-12 September 2004 GUILD GMCD7288/89 [48.44 + 44.52] [RH]

It is enterprising of Guild to offer us another of Mayr’s early oratorios and this creditable recording helps us get a more balanced view of Mayr as a composer. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 – 1791) A Mozart Opera Festival
Le nozze di Figaro, KV 492: 1. Cosa sento! tosto andate (act I) – 2. Non più andrai (act I) – 3. Voi che sapete (act II) – 4. Crudel! perchè finora farmi languir così? (act III) – 5. Giunse alfin il momento ... Deh vieni, non tardar (act IV) Die Entführung aus dem Serail, KV 384: 6. Konstanze, dich wiederzusehen ... O wie ängstlich, o wie feurig (act I) – 7. Vivat Bacchus! Bacchus lebe! (act II) – 8. In Mohrenland gefangen war (act III) – 9. O, wie will ich triumphieren (act III) Die Zauberflöte, KV 620: 10. Der Vogelfänger bin ich ja (act I) – 11. Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön (act I) – 12. Bei Männern, welche Liebe fühlen Zaide, KV 344: 13. Ruhe, sanft, mein holdes Leben (act I) Così fan tutte, KV 588: 14. Soave sia il vento (act I) – 15. Un’aura amorosa (act I) – 16. Il cor vi dono (act II) Il re pastore, KV 208: 17. L’amerò, sarò costante (act II) Don Giovanni, KV 527: 18. Là ci darem la mano (act I) – 19. Finch’han dal vino (act I) Lucia Popp (soprano) (1, 4, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18), Brigitte Fassbaender (mezzo-soprano) (3, 14, 16), Werner Krenn (tenor) (1, 6, 7, 8, 11, 15), Tom Krause (baritone) (1, 2, 4, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 19), Manfred Jungwirth (bass) (7, 9), Wiener Haydn-Orchester/István Kertész Recorded in the Sofiensaal, Vienna, October 1971 DECCA ELOQUENCE 476 7437 [71:25] [GF]

As a varied program, well recorded and with five of the best Mozart singers of their generation this reissue can be confidently recommended. ... see Full Review

Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) Otello, Dramma in three acts.
Libretto by the Marchese Berio di Salsa, loosely based on Shakespeare’s play.
First performed at the Teatro del Fondo, Naples, 4 December 1816 Plus: Appendices including the ‘lieto fine’ (Happy Ending) of Act 3 first performed at the Teatro Argentina, Rome, during the 1819-20 carnival season. Also an entrance aria for Desdemona and an example of music for a female travesti Otello Otello, an African in the service of Venice, Bruce Ford (ten); Desdemona, the lover and secret wife of' Otello, Elizabeth Futral (sop); Elmiro, the father of Desdemona, Ildebrando d'Arcangelo, (bass); Rodrigo, Desdemona's unsuccessful suitor, William Matteuzzi (ten); Iago, the secret enemy of Otello, Juan José Lopera (ten); Emilia, Desdemona's confidante, Enkelejda Shkosa (mezzo); The Doge, Ryland Davies (ten); Lucio, Otello's confidant. Dominic Natoli (ten); A Gondolier Barry Banks (ten) The Geoffrey Mitchell Choir Philharmonia Orchestra/ David Parry Recorded at Henry Wood Hall, London, September and October 1999 using the critical edition by Michael Collins for the Rossini Foundation. OPERA RARA ORC 18 [3 CDs: 71:58 + 77:51 + 77.34] [RJF]

Well conducted and recorded, Opera Rara’s more natural aural ambience tells in its favour as does the liveliness and vibrancy of the chorus. ... see Full Review

Giuseppe VERDI (1813 – 1901) Rigoletto (highlights) Prelude; Act I: Della mia bella; Questa o quella; Gran nuova!; Ch’io gli parli; Pari siamo!; Figlia!; Mio Padre!; Giovanna, ho dei rimorsi; Gualtier Maldè; Caro nome; Zitti, zitti Act II: Ella mi fu rapita!; Parmi veder le lagrime; Possente amor; Povero Rigoletto; Cortigiani, vil razza; Tutte le feste al tempio; Schiudete; ire al carcere; Sì, vendetta Act III: La donna è mobile; Un di, se ben rammentomi; Bella figlia dell’amore; V’ho ingannato Richard Leech (tenor) ... Il Duca di Mantova; Alexandru Agache (baritone) ... Rigoletto; Leontina Vaduva (soprano) ... Gilda; Jennifer Larmore (mezzo-soprano) ... Maddalena; Patricia Bardon (mezzo-soprano) ... Giovanna; Alastair Miles (bass) ... Il Conte di Monterone; Peter Sidhom (baritone) ... Marullo; Barry Banks (tenor) ... Borsa; Geoffrey Moses (bass) ... Il Conte di Ceprano; Fabrizio Visentin (tenor) ... Usciere; Paula Bradbury (mezzo-soprano) ... Paggio. Chorus and Orchestra of Welsh National Opera/Carlo Rizzi Recorded in Brangwyn Hall, Swansea, in February 1993 WARNER APEX 2564 61522-2 [75:53] [GF]

Something of a mixed bag, but there are many good things here and Agache’s impersonation of the hunchbacked jester is something more than that. ... see Full Review

Missa Russica 2 Dimitri Moîsseîevich IAΪTCHKOV (1882-1953) Dostoïno iest (Hymn to the Mother of God) [3:52] Pavel Gripôrievitch TCHESNOKOV (1877-1944) Soviet prevetchnyi (Gabriel’s annunciation) [3:40] Serge RACHMANINOV (1875-1943) Nyné otpuchtchaîechi (Song of Simeon) [3:37] Bogoroditse Devo (Ave Maria) [2:44] Slava v vychnikh Bogou (Gloria in excelsis) [2:32] Tébé poïem [2:31] Nikolaï APOSTOLOV-STROUMSKI (late 19th early 20th c.) Velikoïe slavoslovié (Grand doxology) [10:40] Vladimir Ivanovich MARTINOV (b. 1946) Apocalypse, Missa Russica [30:32] Choeur orthodox Russe de Riga/Archiprêtre Johann Shenrock Recording venue and specific dates not given. Copyright 2004 EDITIONS HORTUS 034 [60:14] [KS]

Some simply sublime singing. A superb ensemble refined into one of the most uniformly blended, consistently-in-tune choirs that I have heard in some time ... see Full Review

Tango Infinito Ulysses PASSARELLA (b.1955) Suite Rioplatense [12.47] Preludio y Milonga [6.55] Pieza Rioplatense No.2 [4.27] Desolación (1997-2002) [11.41] Aníbal TROILO (1914-1975) Sur (arranged by H Ulysses PASSARELLA) [5.39] Lucio DEMARE (1906-1974) Malena (arranged by H Ulysses PASSARELLA) [3.33] Acho MANZI (b.1933) El ultimo organito (arranged by Jessica KUHN) [4.22] Juarés Lamarque PONS (1917-1982) Tres Ritmicas de Tango (orchestrated by H Ulysses PASSARELLA) [13.17] Recitations of poems by Homero Manzi by Acho Manzi Jessica Kuhn (cello) Anna Stümke and Ferenc Kölcze (violins) Clarissa Miller (viola) Thomas Herbst (bass) Recorded Marktoberdorf, December 2004 ANTES EDITION BM CD 31.9214 [69.10] [JW]

There’s enough variety here to keep "tango surfeit" at bay though nothing matches Piazzolla’s stunning memorability and emotional directness, though the performances are committed and commanding. ... see Full Review

 

 

 

BOOK REVIEWS

 

Bach Performance Practice, 1945 - 1975: A Comprehensive Review of Sound Recordings and Literature by Dorottya Fabian University of New South Wales, Australia. October 2003. 42 illustrations and 17 music examples. Hardback, 328 pages, 234 x 156 mm. Including a CD consisting of brief excerpts from various performances of the Goldberg Variations, Brandenburg Concertos, and Passions from published recordings discussed in the text. ISBN 0 7546 0549 3. PURCHASE Through MusicWeb International £55 £50 post-free

A detailed and fascinating look at one of the most interesting periods in the history of music which answers as well as raises a number of interesting questions. ... see Full Review

BOOK REVIEW

Max Bruch - His Life and Works by Christopher Fifield 16 b/w illustrations 400 pages Size: 23 x 15 cm ISBN: 1843831368 Binding: Paperback First published in second edition: 2005 Price: 39.95 USD / 19.99 GBP [RB]

Fifield's humanising communicative faculty successfully elevates Bruch from the slough of one-work composers. ... see Full Review

 

The Cambridge Companion to Elgar Edited by Daniel Grimley and Julian Rushton CUP 2004 ISBN 0 521 53363 5 Paperback £17.99 [EM]

Contains some fascinating and original material on this great composer ... I would recommend it to any true Elgar enthusiast already familiar with other books on the market. ... see Full Review

Latest Programme Notes - Paul Serotsky
Beethoven - 5th symphony
Delius - The Walk to the Paradise Garden
Rossini - Overture: The Italian Girl in Algiers
Rodrigo - Concierto de Aranjuez
R Strauss - Ein Heldenleben
Tchaikovsky - Violin concerto
Tubin - Prélude Solennel
Concert Notes (listed in Index under Misc, and linked from Concert Notes ...) - "Sweet Sorrow - Sweet Music"
Concert Notes (listed in Index under Misc, and linked from Concert Notes ...) - "Das Land Ohne Musik?"

Recordings of the Month Bargains of the Month

 

Specialist Music Books for sale- expensive but I have made them as cheap as I can and offer free postage

Eric Charles Blake The book is well written and has good illustrations; it is strongly recommended. Wars, Dictators and the Gramophone 1898-1945 pp320; illustrated; laminated cover.published by Sessions of York, Huntingdon Rd, York YO31 9HS, England Buy from MusicWeb £10 plus postage - immediate delivery

Christopher Fifield - Ibbs and Tillett: The Rise and Fall of a Musical Empire. Just published by Ashgate. 692 pages, 78 b/w illustrations. Hardback for only £29.95 post-free in the UK [review Rob Barnett] [review Jon Woolf]

LONDON – a Musical Gazetteer By Lewis and Susan Foreman Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 2005 ISBN 0-300-10402-2 (chalk.paper) 384 pp 107 b/w illus large format paperback ISBN 0 300 10402 2 £15:99.

.....must find itself a place on music-lovers’ shelves beside the British Music Yearbook and is excellent value for the quite modest price. see Full Review

BOOK REVIEWS

Bach Performance Practice, 1945 - 1975: A Comprehensive Review of Sound Recordings and Literature by Dorottya Fabian University of New South Wales, Australia. October 2003. 42 illustrations and 17 music examples. Hardback, 328 pages, 234 x 156 mm. Including a CD consisting of brief excerpts from various performances of the Goldberg Variations, Brandenburg Concertos, and Passions from published recordings discussed in the text. ISBN 0 7546 0549 3. PURCHASE Through MusicWeb International £55 £50 post-free

A detailed and fascinating look at one of the most interesting periods in the history of music which answers as well as raises a number of interesting questions. ... see Full Review

Ferruccio Busoni: A Musical Ishmael Della Couling 2005 354 pp SCARECROW PRESS INC. ISBN 0 8108 5142 3 (hardcover) $45

Many thanks to Couling and Scarecrow for starting what could be a major shift in the assessment of modern thought and modern music. ... see Full Review

 

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RECORDINGS OF THE MONTH

 

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Leonard BERNSTEIN (1918-1990) Wonderful Town (1953) Excerpts from the Musical Comedy in Two Acts Ruth Sherwood/Violet ... Kim Criswell Eileen Sherwood ... Audra McDonald Robert Baker ... Thomas Hampson Wreck/Guide/First Editor/Frank Lippincott ... Brent Barrett European Voices/Simon Halsey) Berlin Philharmoniker/Sir Simon Rattle rec. live, Philharmonie, Berlin, 30-31 December 2002 EUROARTS DVD 2052299 [76:00] [IL]

Three cheers for Lenny and Simon Rattle. Wonderful light entertainment for a summer’s evening. It really is a Wonderful Town. It goes straight to the top of my list of favourite recordings for 2005. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896)
Symphony No. 7 in E major, arranged (1921) for small ensemble by Hanns Eisler, Erwin Stein and Karl Rankl Thomas Christian Ensemble (Alois Brandhofer, clarinet; Andrew Joy, horn; Thomas Christian and Melina Mandozzi, violins; Ferdinand Erblich, viola; Bernard Naoki Hedenborg, cello; Hans Winking, double bass; Richard Hyung-Ki Joo and Fujiko Oshima, piano; Roberto Zarpellon, harmonium) recorded in the Haydn-Saal Schloß Esterhazy, Eisenstadt, 25-27 May 2004 MDG 603 1313-2 [59:55] [PL]

It deserves note as a thoroughly worthwhile venture for the ever-enterprising MDG label. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Herbert HOWELLS (1892-1983) Choral Music A Sequence for St. Michael (1961) [10’48"] A Hymn for St. Cecilia (1961) [3’11"] O pray for the peace of Jerusalem (1941) No. I of Four Anthems [7’08"] Te Deum ‘St. George’s, Windsor’ (1952) [10’42"] Benedictus ‘St. George’s, Windsor’ (1952) [6’28"] I love all beauteous things (1977) [6’24"] Salve Regina (1915) No. 4 of Four Anthems of the Blessed Virgin Mary [4’35"] Magnificat ‘New College, Oxford’ (1949) [6’12"] Nunc dimittis ‘New College, Oxford’ (1949) [3’04"] A Spotless Rose (1919) No.2 of Three Carol-Anthems [3’04"] Sing lullaby (1920) No. 3 of Three Carol-Anthems [3’23"] Here is the little door (1918) No. 1 of Three Carol-Anthems [3’43"] Magnificat ‘Collegium Regale’ (1945) [5’12"] Nunc dimittis ‘Collegium Regale’ (1945) [4’06"] The Choir of Wells Cathedral/Malcolm Archer Rupert Gough (organ) rec. Wells Cathedral, Somerset, 21-24 June 2004 HYPERION CDA67494 [79’34"] [JQ]

An outstanding disc. Presents a most useful single-disc survey of part of Howells’ enormous contribution to the music of the English church. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Margaret HUBICKI (b. 1915) Dedication in Time From the Isles of the Sea (1950s) (flute and piano) [7:41] Piano Sonata (1934) [19:44] Full Fathom Five (1935) (mezzo-soprano and piano) [2:04] Theme and Variations (1939) (for string quartet) [11:32] Irish Fantasy (1935) (Four Sketches for piano) [9:09] Lonely Mere and Rigaudon (1935) (cello and piano) [8:35] Svolgimento (1939) (violin and piano) [6:46] Goladon Suite* (1957) (for piano duet) [7:37] Daniel Pailthorpe (flute) James Kirby (piano) Annemarie Sand (mezzo-soprano) Bochmann Quartet Robert Max (cello) Michael Bochmann (violin) *Frederick Stocken (piano) rec. Henry Wood Hall, London in July 2004 CHANDOS CHAN10322 [73:10][PCW]

A heart-warming disc ... see Full Review

James MACMILLAN (b. 1959) Seven Last Words from the Cross (1993)* [46:24] On the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin (1997)** [6:41] Te Deum (2001)** [15:02] Polyphony; ** James Vivian (organ) *Britten Sinfonia/Stephen Layton Recorded* 1-2 April 2004 in St. Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb; ** The Temple Church, London. DDD HYPERION CDA67460 [68:35] [JQ]

Seven Last Words makes a profound impression; a masterpiece. I recommend this CD not just enthusiastically but urgently. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847)
Die erste Walpurgisnacht (The First Walpurgis Night) op.60* [35:35], Meeresstille und glückliche Fahrt (Calm Sea and Propserous Voyage) op.27 [13:06], Ruy Blas op.95 [07:38], Die schöne Melusine (The Fair Melusine) op.32 [11:33], Die Hebriden (The Hebrides) op.26 [10:08] Juan Oncina (tenor)*, Giovanna Fioroni (mezzo-soprano)*, Robert Amis El Hage (bass)*, Coro* e Orchestra Sinfonica di Torino della RAI/Peter Maag Recorded live on 4th February 1972*, 19th October 1979 in the Auditorium della RAI di Torino, Italy ARTS ARCHIVES 43042-2 [78:21][CH]

Performances notable for their whole-hearted involvement; Mendelssohn in Maag’s hands is a fully romantic composer who sings and exalts. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Der fliegende Holländer Daland: Matti Salminen, Senta: Lisbeth Balslev, Erik: Robert Schunk, Mary: Amy Schlemm, Der Steuermann Dalands: Graham Clark, Der Holländer: Simon Estes Chor der Bayreuther Festspiele/Robert Balatsch, Orchester der Bayreuther Festspiele/Woldemar Nelsson, recorded Bayreuth 1985 director: Harry Kupfer DVD-all regions; 5.1 DTS surround sound. UNITEL DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 00440 073 4041 [135:00]. [AO]

Exceptionally good performances by Estes and Salminen, this unusual, challenging interpretation will appeal to those who appreciate Wagner's mental and musical processes ... see Full Review

 



BARGAIN OF THE MONTH

 

 

HISTORICAL BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony no.3 in E flat major op.55 – "Eroica" (1), Symphony no.5 in C minor op.67 (2) NBC Symphony Orchestra/Arturo Toscanini Recorded in the NBC Studio 8-H, New York, October 28th 1939 (1), February 27th, March 1st and 29th 1939 (2) LIVING ERA AJC 8551 [77:08] [CH]

Riveting, there’s no other word for it. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH John CASKEN (b.1949) Golem (1989) - opera in 2 parts: Prelude an Legend (libretto by the composer and Pierre Audi) Maharal – Adrian Clarke (baritone) Golem – John Hall (bass-baritone) Miriam – Patricia Rozario (soprano) Ometh – Christopher Robson (counter-tenor) Stoikus – Paul Wilson (tenor) Jadek – Richard Morris (baritone) Stump – Paul Harrhy (tenor) Gerty – Mary Thomas (mezzo) Music Projects London/Richard Bernas Recorded at Golders Green Hippodrome, London, July 1989 NMC ANCORA D113 [50’36 + 48’39][TH]

Music that is richly lyrical, in a craggy, post-2nd Viennese way ... deserves success, and no-one interested in British opera should miss it. ... see Full Review

HISTORICAL BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Charles GOUNOD 1818 – 1893) Faust, opera in (4) 5 Acts (1859) Jussi Björling (tenor) – Faust; Cesare Siepi (bass) – Méphistophélès; Frank Guarrera (baritone) – Valentin; Lawrence Davidson (bass) – Wagner; Anne Bollinger (soprano) – Siebel; Dorothy Kirsten (soprano) – Marguerite; Thelma Votipka (mezzo) – Martha Orchestra and Chorus of the Metropolitan Opera/Fausto Cleva Broadcast from the Metropolitan Opera, N.Y. on 23rd December 1950 Appendix Songs and Arias sung by Jussi Björling Franz SCHUBERT (1797 – 1828) Ständchen Victor HERBERT (1859 – 1924) Princess Pat - Neapolitan Love Song Orchestra/Donald Voorhees Telephone Hour broadcast, N.Y., recorded on 4th April 1949 Giacomo PUCCINI (1858 – 1924) La bohème, Che gelida manina; O soave fanciulla (with Anna-Lisa Björling (soprano)) Charles GOUNOD Roméo et Juliette, Ange adorable (with Anna-Lisa Björling) Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra/Izler Solomon Symphonies Under the Stars broadcast, Recorded at Hollywood Bowl on 23rd August 1949 Gaetano DONIZETTI (1797 – 1848) L’elisir d’amore, Una furtive lagrima Pietro MASCAGNI (1863 – 1945) Cavalleria rusticana, Mamma! ... Quel vino Richard WAGNER (1813 – 1883) Lohengrin, In fernem Land Jean SIBELIUS (1865 – 1957) Var det en dröm? Op. 37 No. 4; Svarta rosor Op. 36 No. 1; Säv, säv, susa Op. 36 No. 4 Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra/Sten Frykberg Pre-recorded broadcast, recorded in Stockholm on 3rd October 1952 Archivist and Restoration Producer Ward Marston NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.111083 – 85 [3 CDs: 74:34 + 56:53 + 73:18] [GF]

The appendix alone is worth the price of the whole set. And since the opera has so much to offer you won’t regret the purchase.... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Michel LEGRAND (b.1932) His eyes; her eyes [05:31]; I will say goodbye [03:08]; Ask yourself why [04:08]; Summer me; winter me [03:22]; Magic [03:08]; I was born in love with you [03:56]; A rose in the snow [03:32]; Blue; green; grey and gone [03:52]; One day [02:56]; Martina [02:11]; Nobody knows [03:55]; After the rain [03:16]; Little boy lost [03:24]; Breezy’s song [03:19]; What are you doing the rest of your life? [05:30]; One at a time [03:53]; The windmills of your mind [03:29]; Comme elle est longue à mourir ma jeunesse [03:01] Kiri Te Kanawa (soprano) Ambrosian Singers London Studio Orchestra/Michel Legrand Recorded in Petersham Church, Petersham, Surrey, 13th-20th February 1992 WARNER CLASSICS 2564 61736-2 [66:08] [CH]

Something quite unique, recommended to all who are prepared to open the windmills of their minds. ... 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-Z]
[Part 6 Misc A-L]  [Part 7 Misc M-Z]




 

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