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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

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Gustav MAHLER (1869-1911) Symphony No. 6 in A Minor Tragic (1903-1905) [84:31] Carl NIELSEN (1865-1931) Symphony No. 5, Op.50 (1921-1922) [34:27]* Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) Semiramide Overture (1822) [12:23]+ Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, New Philharmonia Orchestra*, BBC Symphony Orchestra+/Jascha Horenstein rec. Winter Gardens, Bournemouth 10 January 1969; BBC Studios, London 26 February 1971*; 6 November 1957+. Also included is a short interview with Horenstein by Deryck Cooke recorded in 1971. ADD. (Mahler and Rossini are mono) BBC LEGENDS BBCL 4191-2 2 [64:19 + 74:00] [TD]

A major release … You will be involved, you will be moved, you will be unnerved, you will not be disappointed. ... see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No. 8 in E flat major (1906-7) [75:43] (Hymnus: Veni, creator spiritus [22:30]; *Final Scene from Faust [53:13]) Ileana Cotrubas (soprano 1, *Magna Peccatrix) Heather Harper (soprano 2, *Una Poenitentium) Hanneke van Bork (*Mater Gloriosa, soprano) Birgit Finnila (contralto 1, *Mulier Samaritana) Marianne Dieleman (contralto 2, *Maria Aegyptiaca) William Cochran (tenor, *Doctor Marianus) Hermann Prey (baritone, *Pater Estaticus) Hans Sotin (bass, *Pater Profundus) Toonkunstkoor, Amsterdam; De Stem des Volks, Amsterdam; Collegium Musicum Amstelodamense; Children’s Choirs of the Churches of St. Willibrord and St. Pius X, Amsterdam Jo Juda (violin solo); Kees de Wijs (organ) Concertgebouw Orchestra/Bernard Haitink rec. Concertgebouw, Amsterdam September 1971. ADD PENTATONE PTC 5186 166 [75:43] [MG]

Haitink’s always finely considered, spiritually focussed interpretation has been given an impressive new lease of life in four channels … see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No. 8 (1909) Martina Arroyo (soprano), Erna Spoorenberg (soprano), Edith Mathis (mezzo), Julia Hamari (contralto), Norma Procter (contralto), Donald Grobe (tenor), Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (baritone), Franz Crass (bass), Eberhard Kraus (organist) Choir of the Bavarian Radio Symphony, Choir of the North German Radio Symphony, Choir of the West German Radio Symphony, Regensberger Domspätzen, Women’s choir of the Munich Motettenchor, Orchester des Bayerisches Rundfunks/Rafael Kubelik rec. 24 June 1970, Munich, Kongreßal des Deutschen Museum AUDITE 92.551 SACD [73:37] [AOz]

You could do a lot worse than to learn Mahler from this undoubted master. ... see Full Review

Benedetto MARCELLO (1687-1762) Sonate per Flauto e Basso, Op. 2 (Sonate 1 - 6) Il Rossignolo: Martino Noferi (recorder), Raffaele Sorrentino (cello), Gian Luca Lastraioli (archlute, guitar), Ottaviano Tenerani (harpsichord) rec. October 2003, San Salvatore a Leccio Castello, Florence, Italy. DDD TACTUS TC 683802 [76:28] [JV]

An enthralling interpretation of recorder sonatas and keyboard pieces by Benedetto Marcello ... see Full Review

Bohuslav MARTINŮ (1890-1959) Piano Music Volume 1 Fantasie et Toccata (1940) [16:26] Trois Danses Tcheques (1926) [8:15] Dumka (1941) [2:03] Sonata No.1 (1954) [20:53] Fenêtre sur le jardin (1938) [7:24] Trois Esquisses (1927) [4:58] Paul Kaspar (piano) rec. Bavarian Radio, Munich, 2002 TUDOR 7054 60:25]
Piano Music Volume 2 Etudes and Polkas (1945): Book I [10:30]; Book II [9:09]; Book III [9:44] Butterflies and Birds of Paradise (1920) [15:21] Borová (VII Czech Dances) (1930) [12:14] Paul Kaspar (piano) rec. Bavarian Radio, Munich, 2002 TUDOR 7125 [57:13] [JW]

Assured and musical, occasionally uneven… Kaspar has a lot to say in this repertoire and says it with force and conviction ... see Full Review

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Violin Concerto in E minor: Op. 64 (1844) [24:27] Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Violin Concerto in D major: Op. 35 (1878) [32:54] Zino Francescatti (violin) Cleveland Orchestra/George Szell (Mendelssohn) New York Philharmonic Orchestra/Thomas Schippers (Tchaikovsky) rec. 1 December 1961 (Mendelssohn), Severance Hall, Cleveland, Ohio, 2 February 1965 (Tchaikovsky), Manhattan Center, New York SONY CLASSICAL 82876 78760 2 [57:21] [TB]

Francescatti was particularly associated with the great concerto repertory, and this coupling of Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky finds him at the height of his considerable powers. ... see Full Review

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Piano Trio No. 1 in D minor, Op. 49 (1839) [28:20] Piano Trio No. 2 in C minor, Op. 66 (1845) [30:12] Julia Fischer (violin); Jonathan Gilad (piano); Daniel Müller-Schott (cello)rec. 14-16 February 2006, Deutschlandfunk Sendesaal, Cologne, Germany DDD, Direct Stream Digital, Super Audio CD, Hybrid Multichannel. PENTATONE CLASSICS SACD PTC 5186 085 [59:04] [MC]

Excellent sonics with superb performances. What more could one ask. This is certainly a disc to dash out and purchase. ... see Full Review

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-47) Piano Trio No. 1 in D minor, Op. 49 (1839) [27:27] Piano Trio No. 2 in C minor, Op. 66 (1845) [29:18] Altenberg Trio, Vienna: (Claus-Christian Schuster (piano); Amiram Ganz (violin); Martin Hornstein (cello)) rec. Muziekcentrum, Den Bosch, The Netherlands, June 2002. DDD CHALLENGE CLASSICS SACD SACC72097 [56:48] [MC]

These are sturdy and strongly characterised performances that will aptly satisfy admirers of the Mendelssohn Piano Trios ... see Full Review

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) A Midsummer Night's Dream complete incidental music to the comedy by William Shakespeare for soloists, chorus and orchestra, Op. 61 (1843) Edition with German narratives for male and female speakers by Renato Grüning and Thomas Leutzbach. Various speakers Anke Hoffmann (soprano) Mechthild Georg (mezzo-sop) WDR Radio Orchestra and Choir, Cologne/Helmuth Froschauer rec. 17-22 December 2001, 4-13 March 2002 at Studio 7, Funkhaus des WDR, Cologne, Germany (text). 10-12 December 2001 at Klaus-von-Bismarck-Saal, Funkhaus Wallrafplatz, Cologne, Germany (music). DDD
CAPRICCIO CAP 60 125 [72:33 + 59:20] [MC]

This well performed version has to compete with several fine recordings of complete music ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Sinfonia Concertante for winds in E flat, K.297b [28:21] Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Concerto for violin, oboe and strings in C minor, after BWV 1060 [15:45] Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) Concerto in C ‘San Lorenzo’ [12:14] Douglas Boyd (oboe); Richard Hosford (clarinet); Robine O’Neill (bassoon); Jonathan Williams (horn) (Mozart); Marieke Blankestijn (violin); Douglas Boyd (oboe) (Bach); Marieke Blankestijn, Iris Juda (violins); William Conway (cello) (Vivaldi) Chamber Orchestra of Europe/Alexander Schneider rec. no date or venue information given CD COE 803 [56:56][GPJ]

On balance, the many virtues of this CD overwhelm its niggling imperfections.  Some would say the disc was worth having for the Adagio of the Sinfonia Concertante alone – and I’m inclined to concur. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Concerto for oboe and orchestra in C, K314 (1777) [19:27] Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949) Concerto for oboe and orchestra in D, AV144 (1945, rev.1948) [24:26] Douglas Boyd (oboe) Chamber Orchestra of Europe/Paavo Berglund rec. Henry Wood Hall, London, November 1986 COE RECORDS CDCOE 808 [44:13][GPJ]

44 minutes may seem stingy, but this disc is packed with wonderful music-making, and, for my money, that’s ample compensation! ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Three Serenades CD 1 Serenade No. 10 for 13 instruments in B flat major, K361 'Gran Partita' (1781-84) [51:52] Concert Rondo for French horn and orchestra in E flat, K371 (1781) [04:44] CD 2 Serenade No. 11 for winds in E flat major, K375 (1781) [23:20] Serenade No. 12 for winds in C minor, K388 (c. 1782/83) [23:71] Sinfonia Concertante in E flat for oboe, clarinet, horn, bassoon and orchestra, K297b (1778)* [28:24] Douglas Boyd (oboe)* Richard Hosford (clarinet)* Robin O’Neill (bassoon)* Jonathan Williams (French horn)* Chamber Orchestra of Europe/Alexander Schneider rec. no details provided. COE RECORDS CD COS 242 [56:50 + 75:29][MC]

Unless one requires exactly the same programme as provided here by the COE the excellence of the strongest rival versions makes this set difficult to recommend. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Serenade No.10 in B flat major for 13 wind instruments, K.361 Gran Partita [52:09] (1. Largo – Allegro molto [9:56]; 2. Menuetto [9:21]; 3. Adagio [5:15]; 4. Menuetto: Allegretto [5:08]; 5. Romanze: Adagio [9:11]; 6. Tema con variazione [9:39]; 7. Rondo [3:23]) Wind soloists of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe (Douglas Boyd, Mark Pledger (oboes); Richard Hosford, Nicholas Rodwell (clarinets); Nicholas Bucknall, Martin Robertson (basset horns); Robin O’Neill, Christopher Gunia (bassoons); Jonathan Williams, Christopher Boers, Stephen Stirling, Peter Richard (horns); Enno Senft (double-bass))/Alexander Schneider rec. 1985? COE RECORDS CD COE 804 [52:09] [GPJ]

A good performance with many fine virtues but not a great one.  There is strong competition ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Serenades: No. 11 in E flat, K375 (1781) [22:23]; No. 12 in C minor, K388/K384a (1782/3) [23:10] Wind Soloists of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe/Alexander Schneider. rec. no date or location given DDD COE RECORDS CD COE 802 [46:51][CC]

This is a budget/mid-price release but even so I would have expected more playing time than only just over ¾-of-an-hour. If the finale of K375 leaves a half-smile on the face, it is not really enough to justify the outlay. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Works for Two Pianos: Vol. 2 Sonata for Two Pianos in D major, K448 (375a) (1781) [21:51] Allegro and Andante (Sonata) in G major, K357 (497a; 500a) (1787/8+1791) [13:49] Sonata in C major, K19d (1765?) [13:48] Larghetto and Allegro for Two Pianos in E Flat major, K Deest (1781/83?) [8:07] Adagio, K: 546 and Fugue in C Minor, K426 (adaptation for two pianos) (1782/1783?) [7:22] Yara Tal and Andreas Groethuysen (piano) rec: 10-12 July 2005, Konzerthaus Karlsruhe SONY CLASSICAL 82876783632 [65:29] [DD]

Fine playing and comprehensive notes but not for everyone or every day. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Un moto di gioia - Opera and Concert Arias Schon lacht der holde Frühling, KV580 (1789) [7:47] Ch’io mi scordi di te? KV 505 (1786)[10:01]¹ Nehmt meinen Dank, KV383 (1782) [3:44] Lungi sa te, mio bene Aria from Mitridate, Rè di Ponto, KV87 (1770) [9:21]² Un moto di gioia, Arietta KV579 (1789) from Le nozze di Figaro [1:33] Come scoglio Recitative and aria from Così fan tutte, KV588 (1790) [5:28] Ruhe sanft mein holdes Leben from Zaide, KV344 (1779) [5:44] Exultate, jubilate, KV165 (1770) [13:30]³ Miah Persson (soprano), Yevgeny Sudbin (piano obbligato)¹, Bengt Olerås (solo horn)², Ulf Samuelsson (organ)³, Swedish Chamber Orchestra/Sebastian Weigle rec. September 2005, Örebro Concert Hall, Sweden BIS SACD-1529 [63:36] [DC]

The singing of one of the best young lyric sopranos of the day … a valuable addition to any vocal collection. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Zaide, KV 336b/344 (1779-80) Diana Damrau (soprano) – Zaide; Michael Schade (tenor) – Gomatz; Rudolf Schasching (tenor) – Soliman; Florian Boesch (baritone) – Allazim; Anton Scharinger (bass) – Osmin; Tobias Moretti (narrator) Concentus Musicus Wien/Nicolaus Harnoncourt rec. live 9–13 March 2006, Grosser Saal Musikverein, Vienna, Austria DEUTSCHE HARMONIA MUNDI 82876 84996 2 [55:07 + 51:56][GF]

Splendid playing on period instruments, lively, un-eccentric readings and five highly accomplished singers. The music itself is certainly worth a place on anyone’s shelves. ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) La Clemenza di Tito - opera in two acts K. 621 (1791) Tito, Emperor of Rome, Charles Castronovo (ten); Sesto, a Roman patrician, friend of Tito, in love with Vitellia, Vesselina Kasarova (mezzo); Vitellia, daughter of the emperor Vitellius, Véronique Gens (sop); Servillia, sister of Sesto, in love with Annio, Alexia Voulgaridou (sop); Annio, a Roman patrician, friend of Sesto, in love with Servillia, Michelle Breedt (mezzo); Publio, Paolo Battaglia (bass) Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks Münchner Rundfunkorkester/Pinchas Steinberg rec. live 26 February 2006, Philharmonie im Gasteig, Munich. DDD BMG RCA 82876 839902 [53.15 + 60.29] [ED]

Steinberg’s pacing is a touch prosaic and the recitatives can fall into routine just a bit too often for my liking - does not displace Mackerras or Kertész ... see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Così fan tutte (1790) Ann Christine Biel (soprano) – Fiordiligi; Maria Höglind (mezzo) – Dorabella; Lars Tibell (tenor) – Ferrando; Magnus Lindén (baritone) – Guglielmo; Ulla Severin (soprano) – Despina; Enzo Florimo (bass-baritone) – Don Alfonso Orchestra and Chorus of the Drottningholm Court Theatre/Arnold Östman Directed for the Stage by Willy Decker; Design by Tobias Hoheisel; Directed and Produced for TV by Thomas Olofsson rec. Drottningholm Court Theatre, Stockholm, 1984 Sound Format PCM Stereo; Picture Format 4:3; Region Code 0 ARTHAUS 102 005 [139:00] [GPu]

A less than perfect, but still enjoyable, production, in which ensemble playing largely makes up for singing which isn’t of the very highest international standard … see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K467 (1785) [27:41] Piano Concerto No. 25 in C major, K503 (1786) [31:23] Stephen Kovacevich (piano) London Symphony Orchestra/Sir Colin Davis rec. London, June 1972. ADD PHILIPS ROSETTE COLLECTION 4765316 [60:04] [DRD]

There have been many superlatives in this review but they’re all deserved. Enough - I’m going to listen to the music again! ... see Full Review

Jacques OFFENBACH (1819-1880) Piano Works Vol. 1: Decameron dramatique - Album du Theatre Francais; Les Roses du Bengale - Six valses sentimentales; Dernier Souvenir, Valse de Zimmer; Bella Notte, Barcarola Marco Sollini (piano) rec. 2-3 August 2003, Teatro Sperimentale of Ancona DDD CPO 777 079-2 [70:03] [AB]

An interesting collection of little known tuneful dances that illustrate Offenbach at work when not writing operas. ... see Full Review

Giovanni Pierluigi da PALESTRINA (1525–1594) Canticum Canticorum (1584) Pietro Prosser (lute/archlute); Vittorio Zanon (positive organ); Capella Ducale Venetia/Livio Picotti rec. Abbey Sant’Antimo, Mantalcino, Sienna, March 2003 cpo 777 142-2 [68.59] [RH]

The definitive recording of has yet to be made. Whilst this one has attractive qualities, it is not really a recording that I would want to live with. ... see Full Review

Sir Hubert PARRY (1848-1918) Overture to an Unwritten Tragedya (1893) [10:25]; An English Suite in Ga (c1921) [20:57]; The Birds (1883) – Bridal Marchb [5:21]; Lady Radnor’s Suite in Fa (1894) [13:25]; Symphonic Variationsa (1897) [12:53]; aLondon Symphony Orchestra, bLondon Philharmonic Orchestra/Sir Adrian Boult. No rec. info. ADD All works except for the Bridal March recorded in association with The RVW Trust. LYRITA RECORDED EDITION SRCD220 [64:09] [DD]

Parry’s orchestral music may not be startlingly original or challenging but it is very melodic. This disc makes for a good listen. ... see Full Review

Wilhelm PETERSON-BERGER (1867-1942) The Complete Symphonies and Orchestral Works: Suite I Somras for orchestra (1903), Romance for violin and orchestra (1915) Orientalisk Dans (1890) Prelude Sveagaldrar (1897) ,Earina suite for orchestra (1917) Chorale and Fugue from Domedagsprofeterna (The Doomsday Prophets) (1912-17) Törnrossagan, Orchestral Suite (The Story of the Sleeping Beauty) (1903; 1934) Frösöblomster, Suite No. 1 (The Flowers of Frösö) (1896; 1934) Violin Concerto in F sharp minor (1928) [34:12] Ulf Wallin (violin) Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken/Michail Jurowski (CD 1) Norrköping Symphony Orchestra/Michail Jurowski (CDs 2-5) rec. 1997-2003 CPO 777 160-2 [5 CDs: 69:44 + 69:43 + 70:55 + 65:55 + 62:48] [RB]

CPO's resoundingly successful complete Peterson-Berger project ... see Full Review

William PRIMROSE (1904-1982) - Viola Transcriptions Alexander BORODIN (1833-1887) Nocturne Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Litany for All Soul’s Day Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Notturno Op.42 (arr. from Serenade, Op.8) Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Träume (Wesendonck Lieder, No.5) Julian AGUIRRE (1868-1924)/Jascha Heifetz (1900-1987) Huella Edgar Daniele del VALLE (1861-1920)/Jascha Heifetz (1900-1987) Ao Pé da Fogueira Nicolò PAGANINI (1782-1840) La Campanella (from Violin concerto No.2) Heitor VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959) Bachianas Brasileiras No.5 Georges BIZET (1838-1875) Adagietto from L’Arlésienne Suite No.1 Efrem ZIMBALIST (1889-1985) Sarasateana Pyotr TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) None but the lonely heart Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Wie Melodien zieht es mir, Op.105 No.1 Roberto Díaz (viola) Robert Koenig (piano) rec. Glenn Gould Studio, CBC Toronto, Canada,  8-10 November 2004 NAXOS 8.557391 [65.30] [JW]

An adroit, rather gentlemanly tribute from one violist to another but interested parties should certainly seek out Primrose’s own recordings ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Romeo and Juliet (1935-36): excerpts from Suites No.1 (Op. 64a), No. 2 (Op. 64b) and No. 3 (Op.101): (Montagues and Capulets (Op.64b, No. 1) [5:31]; Juliet the Young Girl (Op. 64b, No. 2) [3:52]; Folk Dance (Op. 64a, No 1) [4:16]; Scene (Op. 64a, No. 2) [1:31]; Madrigal (Op. 64a, No. 3) [3:35]; Minuet (Op. 64a, No. 4) [3:04]; Masks (Op. 64a, No. 5) [1:55]; Romeo and Juliet (Op. 64a, No. 6) [7:41]; Tybalt’s Death (Op. 64a, No. 7) [4:35]; Friar Laurence (Op. 64b, No. 3) [2:40]; Dance (Op. 64b, No. 4) [1:57]; Romeo and Juliet before Parting (Op. 64b, No. 5) [9:14]; Dance of the Girls from The Antilles (The Girls with Lilies) (Op. 64b, No. 6) [2:12]; Romeo at Juliet’s Tomb (Op. 64b, No. 7) [7:01]; Death of Juliet (Op. 101, No.6) [4:18]) Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra/Myung-Whun Chung rec. Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, January, February 1993. DDD DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON ENTRÉE 00289 477 5011 [63:22] [JQ]

Superlative playing, sympathetic conducting, fine engineering, marvellous music and a bargain price; what more can one ask? ... see Full Review

Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) La Bohème - Opera in Four Acts - (1894-95) Rodolpho – Rolando Villazon (tenor)Mimi – Alexia Voulgaridou (soprano) Vienna Symphony Orchestra/Ulf Schirmer rec. Bregenz Festival, 2002. CAPRICCIO 93 515 [100:00]

This is a highly enjoyable DVD of a quirky stage production that I will revisit for the contributions of the major cast members above all else. ... see Full Review

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor Op.18 (1901) [34:18] Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini Op. 43 (1935) [24:09] Elena Caldine (piano) Russian Philharmonic Orchestra/ Dmitry Yablonsky rec. Moscow Radio Studio 5, January 2006. DDD BEL AIR BAM2040 [58:19][OEW]

A sometimes illuminating coupling that is unfortunately lacking in temperament and rock-solid technical command. ... see Full Review

Sergey RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Opera Highlights: Aleko (1892-3) [39:51] Zemfira - Mariana Zvetkova (soprano) Old Woman - Andreana Nikolova (mezzo) Young Gypsy - Boiko Zvetanov (tenor) Aleko - Alexander Tekeliev (bass-baritone) Old Gypsy - Peter Naydenov (bass) The Miserly Knight (1905) [13:51] Albert - Boiko Zvetanov (tenor) Duke - Niko Isakov (baritone) Baron - Plamen Beykov (bass) Francesca da Rimini (1905) [22:14] Francesca - Mariana Zvetkova (soprano) Paolo - Boiko Zvetanov (tenor) Lanceotto - Peter Naydenov (bass) Sofia National Opera Chorus and Orchestra/Nayden Todorov rec. National Palace of Culture, Sofia, Bulgaria, 16–27 May 2005. DDD NAXOS 8.557817 [75:56] [IL]

Another Naxos opera triumph. An intelligent and valuable concept. All performed with passion and commitment. ... see Full Review

HISTORICAL RECORDING OF THE MONTH Jean-Philippe RAMEAU (1683-1764) Six Concerts en Sextuor (1741) [59:10] Les Indes Galantes, Ballet Héroïques (1735) [48:41] Irène Joachim (soprano) Camille Maurane (baritone) Raymond Malvasio (tenor) La Chorale Yvonne Gouverné L’Ensemble Orchestral Hewitt/Maurice Hewitt Rec. in Paris in 1952 (Six Concerts) and 1942 (Les Indes Galantes) CASCAVELLE VEL 3092 [59:10 + 48:41] [JW]

Vigorous and enthusiastic, long on sympathy and romantic trajectory … Hewitt was a talented and dedicated musician and this release does his memory honourable service ... see Full Review

The Welte-Mignon Mystery -Volume 5 Max REGER (1873-1916) Variations and Fugue on a theme by Telemann Op.134 (1914) [22:38] ¹ Silhouettes No.2 [3:01] No.3 [3:19] Aus meinem Tagebuch Op.72 (1912) Book 1 No.3 [4:15] No.5 [3:59] No.6 [3:35] No.10 [3:14] No.11 [4:40] Five Humoresques Op.20 (1898) No.5 [2:30] Six Intermezzi Op.45 (1900) No.3 [3:36] No.5 [3:21] Max Reger (piano) Frieda Kwast-Hodapp (piano) ¹ Piano rolls recorded 1905 (Reger) and 1920 (Frieda Kwast-Hodapp) TACET 152 [59:21] [JW]

The reproduction and the excellent piano are welcome aspects of a series that has done its utmost to present these rolls in their best musical light. ... see Full Review

Carl REINECKE (1824-1910) Harp Concerto in E minor, Op. 182 (1884) [24:09] Flute Concerto in D major, Op. 283 (1908) [21:19] Ballade, Op. 288 (c.1908) [9:58] Patrick Gallois (flute, also conducting in Harp Concerto); Fabrice Pierre (harp, also conducting in Flute Concerto, Ballade) Swedish Symphony Orchestra rec. 25-28 October 2004, Örebro Concert Hall, Sweden. DDD NAXOS 8.557404 [55:27] [RW]

This is an interesting rarity that deserves some attention. ... see Full Review

Ottorino RESPIGHI (1879-1936) Il Tramonto (The Sunset) (1918) [15:52] String Quartet in D minor (1909) [30:21] Quartetto Dorico (1924) [20:47] Stella Doufexis (mezzo); New Hellenic Quartet: Georgios Demertzis (violin); Dinitrios Vhandrakis (violin); Chara Sira (viola); Apostolos Chandrakis (cello) rec. Länna Church, Sweden, December 2003. DDD BIS CD-1454 [68:04] [GPu]

Three small-scale works by Respighi in beautiful, committed performances … see Full Review

Joseph-Guy ROPARTZ (1864-1955) String Quartet No. 3 (1925) [27:03] String Quartet No. 2 (1911-12) [31:14] Quatuor Stanislas rec. Opera House, Nancy, 6-9 July 2004. TIMPANI 1C1099 [58:17][JW]

Songful lyricism, ethereal … and genuinely mysterious … with an insouciant Monsieur Hulot swing of the rhythm ... see Full Review

Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) La Gazzetta (1816) Cinzia Forte (soprano) - Lisetta; Bruno Praticò(bass baritone) - Don Pomponio; Pietro Spagnoli (baritone) - Filippo; Charles Workman (tenor) - Alberto; Agata Bienkowska (mezzo) - Madame La Rosa; Marisa Martins (mezzo) - Doralice; Simón Orfila (baritone) - Monsù Traversen; Marc Canturri (baritone) – Anselmo Intermezzo Choir Orchestra Academy of the Gran Teatre del Liceu/Maurizio Barbacini Lighting designer: Franco Marri Set designer, Costume designer, Director: Dario Fo rec. live, Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, 1 and 3 July 2005 LPCM Stereo. DTS 16:9 anamorphic. Region Code 0 (Worldwide). DVD9/DVD 5 dual layer. OPUS ARTE OA 0953 D [163:00] [GPu]

A joyous version of one of Rossini’s lesser known operas, well sung and acted, beautiful to look at and characterised by a riot of comic invention … see Full Review

Poul RUDERS (b.1949) Kafka’s Trial Opera in one act with a prelude (2005) Libretto by Paul Bentley after Kafka’s novel Kafka/Josef K. – Johnny van Hal (tenor) Miss Bürstner/Felice Bauer – Gisela Stille (soprano) Miss Montag/Greta Bloch – Marianne Rørholm (alto) The Inspector/Court Recorder – Gert Henning-Jensen (tenor) Deputy Manager/Businessman Block – Michael Kristensen (tenor) Interrogator/Uncle Albert – Johan Reuter (baritone) Jailer Franz – Hans Lawaetz (bass) Jailer William – Anders Jacobsson (bass) Bank Manager/Lawyer Huld – Bo Anker Hansen (baritone) Washerwoman/Hunchback – Hanne Fischer (mezzo) Flogger/Chaplain – Ole Hedegaard (tenor) Chorus and Orchestra of the Royal Danish Opera/Thomas Søndergård rec. ‘live’, Copenhagen Opera House, 31 March, 4, 9 April 2005 DACAPO 8.226042-43 [64:21 + 60:56] [TH]

The musical side of things leaves the strongest impression with this opera ... see Full Review

 

 

 


Detailed listing (last five 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]
[Recommended recordings]



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