Issue 38:2
Nov/Dec 2014
Magazine Contents

Classical Recordings

Antón García Abril (b. 1933) is of the same generation as such Spanish Modernists as Cristóbal Halffter, yet he seems to have sailed through the avant-garde...

Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, who died recently at 80, was of German parentage but Spanish nationality. He became over time Spain’s greatest conductor and a major...

In 1710 or thereabouts, Tomaso Albinoni decided to ditch the family paper business and become a full-time musician. For the next 40 years he dabbled in...

Is Maltempo the new Alkan avatar, the pianist who will define Alkan for the dawning generation as Ronald Smith, John Ogdon, and Marc-André Hamelin did for...

The album title, Alkan—The Complete Vianna da Motta Transcriptions, opens on a fascinating and too little known era. From 1901, Busoni included a handful of Alkan...

As concepts go this is interesting, and (rare for a contemporary music album) has a nice whiff of camp-fire macabre. The Murder Ballads, a so-called “Murder...

In The Praying Mantis and the Bluebird , Beth Anderson shows that she knows how to develop a theme and keep varying it enough to hold...

I don’t suppose it’s much of a secret that the majority of CD companies these days are more or less vanity operations—at least to some extent....

The music by Swiss composer-conductor Volkmar Andreae has made a lot of fans at Fanfare. Three CDs of his music have received warm reviews by James...

Louis Andriessen’s La Commedia (with electronic interludes by Anke Brouwer) is a “film opera in five parts,” an attempt to create a new genre. First performed...

Though we’ve been discovering more and more of George Antheil’s (1900–1959) output, I suspect his reputation will always rest of these two pieces, iconoclastic and yet...

According to the informative notes that come with this issue, George Antheil complained in 1945 that he was still thought of solely as the composer of...

Langston Hughes’s powerful, often vernacular, verse was one of the boldest flowerings of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1930s. These are concert choir settings of some...

After suffering through Richard Egarr’s recording of the Bach St. John Passion and the Dunedin Consort’s version of the Mozart Requiem, it was a real pleasure...

It has been almost two decades since Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s passion oratorio Die letzten Leiden des Erlösers was released in a premiere recording by Sigiswald...

This, the second CD I’ve heard of C. P. E. Bach’s music played by Preethi de Silva, is just as interesting and well played as the...

In 37:6 I reviewed with great enthusiasm the 30-CD super-budget set on Brilliant Classics of a miscellaneous compendium of works by C. P. E. Bach. Now...

Fanfare normally frowns on grouped reviews, but these two releases have much in common, so I’d be repeating myself if I dealt with them separately. For...

When it comes to single-disc harpsichord programs put together from a selection of Bach’s keyboard works, the choices are many; and among them, the Chromatic Fantasia...

Among her fans, Alicia de Larrocha seems to generate something like love as well as respect. Critic Charles Berigan wrote of her ability “to evoke an...

After collecting all 55 volumes of Masaaki Suzuki’s Bach sacred cantatas cycle, reviewing two or three of them enthusiastically, and taking personal pleasure in every one...

Alicia de Larrocha (1923–2009) was unquestionably one of the 20th century’s great dames of the piano and an artist beloved by many, including yours truly. And...

When it comes to Bach’s The Art of Fugue , the trend over the past 20 years or so has favored performances either in arrangements for...

This is a reissue of a 1994 recording that was also reissued in 2003. Three of the principal singers on this performance, soprano Schäfer, mezzo Danz,...

Let me present this review in three sections: (1) The Program; (2) The Organ; (3) The Performances. (1) The Program. The first thing to be aware...

The St. Mark Passion is the great white whale of the Bach corpus. No other missing composition of Bach has been the subject of so much...

Back in 34:4 and then again in 36:4, I reviewed recordings of Bach’s trio sonatas for organ in other instrumental arrangements: the first time for a...

Julia Brown, a wonderfully vivacious harpsichordist, presents here Volume 5 in the complete keyboard works of Wilhelm Friedemann Bach. She plays these complex and stylistically mixed...

Here’s an addendum to Groschopp’s four-CD collection of Busoni transcriptions (Capriccio 7015, Fanfare 33:4) in which he continues his diverting pastime of bringing to audition the...

I can remember when any staging of Bartók’s only opera, the haunting Bluebeard’s Castle from 1911, was a rarity. Being only an hour long, it had...

This first-ever CD issue of the 1962 Lucerne performance of Bartók’s only opera (I could not even find an LP issue of it in the online...

Some will dismiss this recording because it is sung in German, but, because we have become so accustomed to hearing the original Hungarian, the German strikes...

This Bluebeard’s Castle is in German, minus the important, spoken prolog, and in less than optimal sound. None of this seriously detracts from a good if...

James Ehnes, who has been recording a great deal of Bartók for Chandos lately, is one of my favorite contemporary violinists, not simply because he has...

This disc is labeled Chamber Works for Violin, Volume 3 . The first two earned rave reviews from Robert Maxham ( Fanfare 35:6) and Jerry Dubins...

Bartók and Stravinsky share this smartly conceived program of significant 20th-century chamber music. Contrasts was a late work, written during Bartók’s final American sojourn in 1938...

Who can explain why we like one performance so much better than another? On a lovely Chandos disc reviewed nearby, Michael Collins, James Ehnes, and Andrew...

Just one issue ago I found myself reviewing a new recording of Mozart piano concertos performed by this same pianist, Ingrid Jacoby. Though her contribution to...

This release has a lot going for it. For starters, it has a distinguished and experienced musician at the helm. Cellist Heinrich Schiff, now also a...

Although HIPsters nibble around the edges like rabbits in the lettuce patch, Beethoven’s Third and Fourth piano concertos burst the buttons of Haydn’s Classical waistcoat. It...

When first confronted, the Diabelli Variations are forbidding. On the flimsiest foundation Beethoven built an immense leaning tower. It’s documented that he didn’t think much of...

A funny thing happened on my way to reviewing this Fidelio. Being a huge fan of Jon Vickers, I put on “Gott! Welch’ Dunkel hier!” first...

From the “Eroica” onward, Beethoven’s style could belong to no one but Beethoven, and yet he was capable of backward glances. The ear wouldn’t detect that...

While I am in many ways a great fan of Georg Solti, I am not an uncritical one. In particular, most of his forays into Beethoven...

Reviewing this set of Beethoven’s late quartets performed by one of yesteryear’s pre-eminent string quartet ensembles requires me to make an exception to my longstanding, and...

In 37:4, I concluded my double-headnote review of James Brawn’s first two installments in his Beethoven cycle, saying, “There are certain great works in the literature...

Grigory Sokolov (b. 1950) is the embodiment of a living legend, the type of pianist who seems impervious to criticism in what he performs or how...