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Tuesday May 17th

Einar ENGLUND (1916-1999) Complete Music for Solo Piano - Laura Mikkola (piano) rec. 2017 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0356 [71:44] [HC] A fine exploration of Englund’s piano music.

Fanny MENDELSSOHN HENSEL (1805-1847) A Woman’s Hand - Helen Cawthorne (piano) rec. 2021 PRIMA FACIE PFCD172 [61:20] [JF] Technically and interpretively perfect – a voyage of delight from end to end.

Albert ROUSSEL (1869-1937) Le Testament de la Tante Caroline - Marie Lenormand, Marion Gomar, Lucile Komitès, Orchestre des Frivolités Parisiennes/Dylan Corlay rec. 2019 NAXOS 8.660479 [79:00] [SB] Roussel’s comic opera is workmanlike but lacks fizz.

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Jazz Suite No.1, The Age of Gold & The Limpid Stream suites, Suite for Variety Orchestra - Singapore SO/Andrew Litton rec. 2019 BIS BIS-2472 SACD [69:14] [NB] Sophisticated performances of entertaining music.

Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949) Metamorphoses - Le OFF rec. 2019 NOMADMUSIC NMM100 [58:34] [RMo] Something of an odd hodgepodge which is nonetheless beautifully played.

Cool Tunes for the Big Bassoon Susan Nigro (contrabassoon), Mark Lindeblad (piano) rec. 2021 CRYSTAL RECORDS CD980 [59:32] [GPJ] An excellent introduction to this diffident and often neglected instrument.

Symphonies of the Bach Family Berliner Barock Solisten/Reinhard Goebel rec. 2021 HÄNSSLER CLASSIC HC21029 [63:37] [GF] Not a single well-known work within eyesight, but a life-enhancing excursion off the beaten track that should appeal to every baroque enthusiast.

Monday May 16th

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 4 - Altomonte Orchester St Florian/Rémy Ballot rec. 2021 GRAMOLA 99261 SACD [79:27] [RMo] Ballot’s leisureliness in Bruckner is controversial as always but with its own interest and insights.

Fortunato CHELLERI (1690-1757) 6 Sonate di Galanteria - Luigi Chiarizia (harpsichord) rec. 2017 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 96308 [70:49] [JV] Pleasant sonatas by a little-known composer.

Carl NIELSEN (1865-1931) & Jean SIBELIUS (1865-1957) Violin Concertos - Johan Dalene (violin) Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra/John Storgårds rec. 2021 BIS BIS2620 SACD [73:32] [RWe] The only SACD choice for this coupling, in fine performances, especially the Nielsen.

Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) La Senna Festeggiante - Gwendoline Blondeel (soprano), Lucile Richardot (mezzo-soprano), Luigi De Donato (bass), Orchestre del’Opéra Royal/Diego Fasolis rec. 2021 CHÂTEAU DE VERSAILLES CVS064 [80:49] [DBi] Perhaps Vivaldi’s best secular vocal music in a performance which might be equalled elsewhere but is very enjoyable.

British Piano Concertos Simon Callaghan (piano) BBC National Orchestra of Wales/Martyn Brabbins rec. 2021 LYRITA SRCD407 [68:33] [HC] Lesser-known works for piano and orchestra, played with highly communicative enthusiasm.

Sir Eugene Goossens (conductor) Cincinnati Symphony, Vol. 1 Works by Delius, Walton & Vaughan Williams rec. 1941/46 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC654 [76:18] [MSJ] Restorations of sensual and atmospheric performances by Goossens in Cincinnati.

Dimitri Mitropoulos (conductor) The Complete RCA and Columbia Album Collection rec. 1946-1957 RCA 19439888252 [69 CDs] [RCo] Music’s mighty Athenian.

Now the Green Blade Riseth Choir of King’s College, Cambridge/Daniel Hyde rec. 2021 KING’S COLLEGE KGS0065 [77:05] [MR] Daniel Hyde’s unfailingly perceptive and inspired direction in a truly sumptuous demonstration of choral singing.

Friday May 13th

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Così fan tutte - Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Lisa Otto (soprano) Nan Merriman (mezzo) Philharmonia Ch & O/Herbert von Karajan rec. 1954 PRISTINE AUDIO PACO189 [3 CDs: 160:33] [RMo] This classic performance is now revealed in new glory.

Poul RUDERS (b. 1949) Harpsichord Concerto - Mahan Esfahani (harpsichord) Aarhus Symphony Orchestra/Leif Segerstam rec. 2020 OUR RECORDINGS 9.70896 [20:58] [PRB] A delicious Danish delight, with more than enough tang to tantalize anyone’s taste buds.

Erik SATIE (1866-1925) Piano Music Vol. 5: Ésoterik Satie - Noriko Ogawa (piano) rec. 2018 BIS BIS-2345 SACD [76:04] [SB] Intense but rather limited pieces from Satie’s involvement with occultism.

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Piano Concerto No. 1, Symphony No. 9 - Yefim Bronfman (piano) Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra/Mariss Jansons rec. 2011/12 BR KLASSIK 900202 [46:17] [WH] Superb live performances of two of Shostakovich’s most mercurial works.

Jugendstil Arrangement of works by Mahler & Schoenberg - Beatrice Berrut (piano) rec. 2021 LA DOLCE VOLTA LDV100 [67:33] [DMD] Mahler and Schoenberg as though transcribed by Liszt with magical results.

Mandolin on Stage Concertos by Vivaldi, Paisiello, Lecce & Hummel - Raffaele La Ragione (mandolin) Il Pomo d'Oro/Francesco Corti rec. 2021 ARCANA A524 [66:56] [JV] This disc should convince every sceptic, that the mandolin is an instrument which fully deserves a place on the stage.

The Sweet and Merry Month Choir of Magdalen College, Oxford/Mark Williams rec. 2021 OPUS ARTE OACD9049D [72:17] [MR] May Day celebrations from Magdalen College Oxford have rarely sounded so lovely.

Thursday May 12th

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Cello Concerto, Serenade for Strings - Petr Nouzovský (cello), Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Pardubice/Stanislav Vavřínek rec. 2021 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 95696 [74:34] [WH] A very fine reading of a favourite concerto.

Emil HARTMANN (1836-1898) Scandinavian Folk Music – Cathrine Penderup (piano) rec. 2021 DANACORD DACOCD 936-937 [2 CDs: 116:26] [JF] The performance of this novel musical byway is committed and expressive.

Charles IVES (1874-1954) & Samuel BARBER (1910-1981) String Quartets - Emerson String Quartet rec. 1990/91 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 435 864-2 [64:40] [PBW] These are superb performances – an essential purchase in every way.

Hieronymus PRAETORIUS (1560-1629) Organ Works - Léon Berben (organ) rec. 2021 AEOLUS AE-11311 SACD [78:46 + 78:29] [SG] Once again, Aeolus mines attractive rarities.

Evert TAUBE (1890-1976) Out There So Quiet & other songs - Torsten Mossberg (tenor) rec. 2020/21 STERLING CDA1857-2 [73:44] [GF] This recording is another feather in Torsten Mossberg’s cap.

Bronislaw Gimpel (violin) Live Vol. 1 rec. 1937-1967 DOREMI DHR-8163-64 [75:26 + 79:14] [JW] The vivid and communicative Bronislaw Gimpel, charted over three decades.

Specchio Veneziano Works by Reali, Vivaldi & Bach - Le Consort rec. 2021 ALPHA 771 [68:00] [JV] Reali could not have wished for better advocates of his forgotten sonatas.

Wednesday May 11th

Marco Enrico BOSSI (1861–1925) Complete Organ Works Vol. 15 - Andrea Macinanti (organ) rec. 2002–21 TACTUS TC862791 [2 CDs: 110:59] [MR] The final volume of this long-running complete Bossi organ music series, comprises an odd assortment of trifles ranging from the sublime to the vaguely ridiculous.

Thomas Alexandrovich de HARTMANN (1885-1956) Orchestral Music - Bülent Evcil (flute) Lviv Ntl PO Ukraine/Theodore Kuchar rec. 2021 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0633 [65:55] [EJW] Enjoyable, unusual orchestral music by a little-known composer.

Franz SCHUBERT (1797–1828) The Fair Maid of the Mill - Nicky Spence (tenor), Christopher Glynn (piano) rec. 2020 SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD711 [63:25] [GF] Nicky Spence’s theatrical reading should be a natural choice for those wanting an English language version, but also an interesting alternative for already well-stocked collectors.

Roman STATKOWSKI (1859-1925) Piano Works 3 - Anna Paras (piano) rec. 2021 ACTE PRÉALABLE AP0536 [53:21] [PRB] Yet another new name with something of true merit to say.

Christian Ferras (violin) Concert Tours in Europe 1961-74 MELOCLASSIC MC2049 [77:54 + 76:47] [JW] Ferras in warhorses but also in repertoire new to his discography.

The Myth of Venice Gawain Glenton (cornettos), Silas Wollston (Metal-pipe organ, Organo di legno, virginals) rec. 2021 DELPHIAN DCD34261 [61:50] [GPu] Intriguing and beautifully played.

Salve Regina Motets by Hasse & Porpora - Clint van der Linde (alto), Les Muffatti rec. 2021 RAMÉE RAM2102 [69:07] [JV] Expressive and stylistically convincing performances by Clint van der Linde.


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