Dances is the second release for Chandos by the Aquarelle Guitar Quartet. The percussive capability of the guitar lends itself extremely well to the rhythmic energies of many dance forms. This collection highlights the versatility of the classical guitar and the manner in which it can be used to interpret such vibrant dances, from classics such as Boccherini’s Introduction and Fandango to original arrangements of the music of Piazzolla and Biréli Lagrène. The Aquarelle Quartet formed and studied under Australian guitarist Craig Ogden. Praise for their previous album, Spirit of Brazil (CHAN10512): ‘...outstanding playing and infectious spirit. This is no mere niche guitar CD, but a luscious and lively general-appeal winner.’ –BBC Music *****
Beethoven Piano Concertos Complete Paul Lewis (piano), BBC Symphony Orchestra, Jiri Belohlavek (conductor) HARMONIA MUNDI | HMC90205355 | CD3 | 794881966226
This year’s BBC Proms season will feature for the first time ever, one pianist, Paul Lewis, performing all Beethoven’s Piano Concertos. His complete set of the Beethoven sonatas enjoyed extraordinary acclaim, culminating in the prestigious ‘Recording of the Year’ award from Gramophone for the 4th volume in 2008. Encouraged by this worldwide success, Paul Lewis now turns his attention to the five piano concertos with the BBC Orchestra.
Watch video footage from the recording session
Paul Lewis gives Beethoven recitals in Australia during June and July for a national tour supported by Musica Viva.
Beethoven Piano Sonatas Vol 3 Angela Hewitt (piano) HYPERION | CDA67797 | CD | 034571177977
Angela Hewitt’s legion of fans will be delighted with this eagerly awaited third volume of Beethoven sonatas. Her first two releases in this series were praised for their ‘clarity, intelligence and elegance’ … ‘fusing poetry and passion’, and all these trademark qualities of her playing are fully present in this third disc. Four contrasting sonatas are presented here, including Op 27 No 2 ‘Moonlight’, which needs no introduction!
Gypsic Sarah Nemtanu (violin), Chilly Gonzales (piano, organ farsifa, drum, percussion), Romain Descharmes (piano), Lurie Morar (cymbalum) NAÏVE | V5235 | CD | 822186052358
This spirited album of classical music with a fierce gypsy twist is the debut offering from Romanian-born rising star Sarah Nemtanu, first violin and soloist with the Orchestre National de France and the violinist in the French film Le Concert. Produced by Armand Amar (Songs from a World Apart), Gypsic irreverently blends classical precision with Balkan fire, notably in its cimbalom accompaniment and in a jazz and world music-tinged rendition of Ravel’s Violin Sonata Blues. The result is a surprising and fresh concoction; a must for fans of Pavel Šporcl's Gypsy Way (SU3951).
value pick of the month - cheaper than a download!
Pavarotti The Opera Collection Pavarotti, with Mirella Freni, Renata Scotto, Montserrat Caballe, Claudio Abbado, Carlo Maria Giulini, Riccardo Muti RED NOTE | RNCDBOX002 | CD14 | 5060214200530
Bellini I Puritani, I Capuleti E I Montecchi, Verdi Rigoletto, Luisa Miller, Massenet Manon, Puccini La Boheme
These live performances of six complete bel canto operas (originally on the Opera d’Oro label) were recorded in Italy early in Pavarotti’s meteoric rise to fame, with stellar casts including Montserrat Caballe, Mirella Freni and Renata Scotto and conductors Abbado, Giulini and Muti. The boxed set follows the success of the Pavarotti ‘Signature Collection’ (RNCDBOX001) at the same great price. Hear the young Pavarotti in fine voice singing the Italian repertoire with which he captivated generations of music lovers.
Averaging roughly 40 cents per track, this lavish boxed set is cheaper than a download and looks spectacular on any collector’s shelf.
August 2, 2010 Mozart Violin Concertos Nos 3, 5 Richard Tognetti, Australian Chamber Orchestra BIS | BISSACD1754 | SACD | 7318599917542
Destined to be one of the most popular and accessible classical albums by any Australian artist this year, this is the Australian Chamber Orchestra's much-anticipated first album dedicated solely to Mozart following a national tour featuring one of the composer’s violin concertos.
It's set to rival Tognetti’s recordings of Bach which won three consecutive ARIA awards. Mozart's violin concertante works are amongst his most beautiful, and Richard Tognetti as soloist plays them on one of the world's finest violins (the extraordinary 10-million-dollar Carrodus crafted by Guarneri in 1743) with rare insight, passion and poetry. This is surely the must-have classical album of 2010. Watch footage from the recording sessions, interviews with Tognetti and more
July 5, 2010 Gershwin by Grofé - Symphonic Jazz Lincoln Mayorga (piano), Al Gallodoro (clarinet, bass clarinet, saxophone), Harmonie Ensemble, Steven Richman HARMONIA MUNDI | HMU907492 | CD | 093046749224
In this swinging collection of ‘symphonic jazz’, Steve Richman and the Harmonie Ensemble New York recreate the original Gershwin orchestrations made by Ferde Grofé for the Paul Whiteman Orchestra.
The programme features Gershwin’s immortal Rhapsody in Blue (with legendary clarinettist Al Gallodoro, an original member of the Paul Whiteman Orchestra in the 1930s!), the I Got Rhythm Variations, and a selection of George’s Broadway tunes, including 'Summertime'.
June 28, 2010 Beethoven Piano Concertos Complete Paul Lewis (piano), BBC Symphony Orchestra, Jiri Belohlavek (conductor) HARMONIA MUNDI | HMC90205355 | CD3 | 794881966226
This year’s BBC Proms season will feature for the first time ever, one pianist, Paul Lewis, performing all Beethoven’s Piano Concertos. His complete set of the Beethoven sonatas enjoyed extraordinary acclaim, culminating in the prestigious ‘Recording of the Year’ award from Gramophone for the 4th volume in 2008.
Encouraged by this worldwide success, Paul Lewis now turns his attention to the five piano concertos with the BBC Orchestra. Paul Lewis gives Beethoven recitals in Australia during June and July for a national tour supported by Musica Viva.
May 31, 2010 The Complete London Symphonies Les Musiciens du Louvre, Marc Minkowski (conductor) NAÏVE | V5176 | CD4 | 822186051764
4 CDs for the price of 2
2009 was an annus mirabilis of astonishing productivity and brilliance for celebrated conductor Marc Minkowski, who has conducted critically acclaimed recordings of major works including the Bach Mass in B Minor (V5145) and a unique concept album devoted to Cecilia, patron saint of music (V5183).
Following these successes, he now releases on CD his superb contribution to last year’s Haydn bicentenary: the complete London Symphonies. These twelve symphonies represent the pinnacle of the Classical genre from the most prolific symphonist of the era. Minkowski has already garnered a reputation as one of the most innovative and progressive Mozart conductors recording today; this renown can now be extended to Mozart's friend and contemporary, Joseph Haydn.
This recording is dedicated to the memory of internationally acclaimed Australian soprano Deborah Riedel who was to have played the part of Ghiva but who sadly passed in January 2009. The superb Australian cast includes Fiona Janes and Bernadette Cullen, conducted by Richard Bonynge.
The Lorelei Rock in the Rhine River on which the siren Lurline played her enchanting harp to lure fishermen to a watery grave is the setting for Lurline, a Grand Legendary Opera in three acts, heard here in a new performing edition by Richard Bonynge. Victorian theatre critics declared it an outright success and the opera played for a substantial number of performances, making it a landmark production.
In 1826 Felix Mendelssohn, aged only seventeen, composed his famous overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He wrote incidental music for the same play sixteen years late, and effortlessly recaptured the world of his youthful imagination. It sparkles and shimmers with its fairy magic even now. In this recording, the haunting Nocturne, the lively Scherzo and the famous Wedding March are interspersed with ‘melodramas’ accompanying spoken text (in English) from Shakespeare’s much-loved play.
A beautiful selection on 2 CDs of the best-known arias, duets and orchestral music from Vienna’s golden age of operetta, featuring Die Fledermaus, The Merry Widow, The Land of Smiles, The Gypsy Princess, The Gypsy Baron and Countess Mariza.
Stellar singers (including Yvonne Kenny) and conductors (Richard Bonynge) truly make this the ultimate operetta collection.
With historically accurate designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman and an excellent cast headed by Hibla Gerzmava and Teodor Ilincai, this 2009 revival, in which conductor Andris Nelsons makes a distinguished Royal Opera House debut, does full justice to Puccini’s masterpiece. Filmed in High Definition and recorded in true surround sound.