Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

Some items
to consider

Free classical music concerts by Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra.


Moravec - Twelfth Night Recital
15%off £17.21 (until Dec 7)

Katerina Englichová - harp
15%0ff £10.83 (until Dec 7)

  • Today's leading<br>clarinet-piano duo
  • Stellar debut<br>piano recital
  • Clarinet transcriptions Jonathan Cohler
  • Jonathan Cohler & Claremont Trio
  • French clarinet masterpieces
  • Today's leading<br>clarinet-piano duo

Sibelius Symphonies Maazel
4CDs + Blu-ray audio
Special Price £36.75

RVW A Sea Symphony - Elder

Shostakovich Symphony 10 Nelsons

Verdi Requiem

Dvorak Opera Premiere

Grieg, Mendelssohn sonatas




Would you like a hyperlinked weekly summary of the CDs we have reviewed?

Click for further details

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
Classical Editor
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Cameo Classics
Prima voce
Red Priest
Toccata Classics

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
Classical Editor
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

Gabriela Lena FRANK (b. 1972)
Hilos (Threads) for clarinet, violin, cello and piano (2010) [27:19]
Danza de los Saqsampillos for two marimbas (2000/2006) [6:55]
Adagio para Amantaní for cello and piano (2007) [9:43]
Quijotadas for string quartet (2007) [22:45]
Gabriela Lena Frank (piano)
ALIAS Chamber Ensemble
rec. 22-23 May and 1-2 August, 2010, Turner Recital Hall, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
NAXOS 8.559645 [66:41]

Experience Classicsonline

Gabriela Lena Frank is a pianist-composer with fascinating ethnic roots, and she explores that heritage in much of her music. Her parents are from Peru and Lithuania and she’s of Jewish descent. The mixture makes for a unique blend, of which the single biggest component is Peru’s native folk-musical styles and rhythms. The centerpiece of the CD is a half-hour chamber work, Hilos (Threads), the threads of which are (one imagines) the four instruments, which appear together and in nearly every available combination of two.

Thus in the first movement of Hilos we get all four instruments together — piano, violin, cello, clarinet — which is reduced to clarinet with a very characterful pizzicato cello in the second dance and a rhapsodic violin solo urged on by piano in the third. The music is all richly evocative of Peruvian folk-dance, with stamping rhythms and impressive virtuosity required. There is melody, but not in the western sense. Readers here are not likely to whistle Hilos, except maybe the toe-tapping “Juegos” for violin, cello, and clarinet. The musical language has impressive internal logic. And a lot of this is pure pleasure, too, like the almost jazzy piano trills in the final movement. I’ve listened repeatedly with great pleasure: the tribes of Peru might not have heard anything quite like this - unless the sidelong glance at Stravinsky in the fourth dance is a happy coincidence - but they and we ought to be happy to.

The Danza de los Saqsampillos might be the easiest work to like on the program: arranged for two marimbas from a two-piano original, it’s a very catchy dance that really realizes the sound potential of the instruments. I’m not sure I’d enjoy it as much on piano, not without the back-and-forth between the dueling marimba players and the evocative sounds the instrument conjures up.

The Adagio para Amantaní is a much more withdrawn, introspective work, and though it’s scored for cello and piano they take turns in their laments; if they play together at all it is only for a few seconds. I should note that, according to Gabriela Lena Frank’s wonderful booklet note, Amantaní is an island: “Situated in the middle of Lake Titicaca between Perú and Bolivia, the island is both beautiful and frighteningly barren, and its inhabitants depend on one another deeply in order to survive the cold and arid climate.”

The disc then concludes with Quijotadas, a suite for string quartet based on the Don Quixote: there’s a tripping, lively seguidilla at the beginning (adventures at the inn?), a portrait of the Don’s descent into madness, and another descent portrait, of his entry into the cave, a movement which has a suitably ghostly and mysterious conclusion. The best parts of the quartet - including that outstanding seguidilla - are really terrific, though I wouldn’t rate this as highly as the Danza or Hilos.

That is, however, very high indeed. This is wonderful music, and whether you call it “American” music, or “Latin-American” music, or folk-inspired, or whatever, Gabriela Lena Frank has a distinctive, interesting voice, and she writes extremely well-crafted music that’s a great pleasure to hear. Her piano contributions here are very good, the ALIAS Chamber Ensemble is up to all of Frank’s technical demands and complex rhythms - listen to the exquisite pizzicatos in the seguidilla - and the recorded sound is exemplary. What more can I say? This is a release to be excited about.

When this CD is loaded into a computer, the Gracenote database identifies its genre as “rock.” I’d object but, hey, Danza de los Saqsampillos rocks.

Brian Reinhart







































Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Pat and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.