Issue 37:5
May/June 2014
Magazine Contents

Classical Recordings

John Adams’s Harmonielehre , a symphony in all but name, came at a pivotal point in the composer’s stylistic journey. Its long first movement begins with...

The first impression will almost certainly be the almost antiseptic precision with which Peter Oundjian and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra produce the pounding, chaotic Overture...

John Adams created the purely orchestral “Doctor Atomic” Symphony in 2007, two years after the premiere of his Doctor Atomic , the opera on which the...

This spectacular new release is perhaps the perfect introduction to those who do not already know the music of John Adams, as it contains not only...

Born in the generation following that of Copland, Piston, and Hindemith (all of whom he studied with), Samuel Adler surely has achieved by now the status...

Here are two of the most recent collections of cantigas in the long series that Eduardo Paniagua has been recording for nearly two decades. The first...

The music of Charles-Valentin Alkan is still pretty much an acquired taste. Many listeners, supposedly enchanted by Franz Liszt’s bombastic operatic paraphrases, think of Alkan’s music...

This disc attractively pairs Tchaikovsky’s familiar Trio with the less frequently encountered one by his younger colleague and admirer Anton Arensky. Both works are dedicated to...

When I reviewed Antonio Meneses’s recording of the Beethoven Cello Sonatas with his mentor, pianist Menahem Pressler, some years ago, I praised his musicality and phrasing...

This has an historical resonance. In Hamburg on Palm Sunday 1786, the composer Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (1714–1788) conducted a charity concert in Hamburg consisting of...

These three violin sonatas and Arioso were composed by C. P. E. Bach while he was still in the employ of Frederick the Great, therefore its...

As the liner notes for this excellent collection point out, the six collections of published sonatas “for experts and amateurs” were not only C. P. E....

This is actually the seventh of the 10 discs in Georg Christoph Biller’s ongoing Bach cantata series with the Thomanerchor Leipzig and the Gewandhaus Orchestra. Rondeau...

With this release, Suzuki’s Bach sacred cantatas cycle, sadly, comes to an end. I say “sadly” because I’ve collected every volume in the series and have...

Here it is! The final disc in Masaaki Suzuki’s epic edition of the sacred cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach. It’s tempting to say that the 18-year...

Eric Milnes and Montréal Baroque first appeared on my radar eight years ago with the first two releases of an optimistically projected edition of “Bach’s complete...

Recordings of Bach’s three popular solo bass cantatas— Ich habe genug (BWV 82), Der Friede sei mit dir (BWV 158), and Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne...

You might think of cantatas 82 and 56 as the equivalents of Olympic events for bass recitalists. The challenges are extreme, and the competition is fierce—and,...

Owing to the peculiar nature of print media I’m used to writing about Christmas recordings on some of the hottest days of the year, a helpful...

If a record producer has one obligation, it’s to make clear the contents of the album on the front and back covers. There is such a...

This slim two-disc package is loaded. It contains all seven of Bach’s single-keyboard concertos and then, as a substantial bonus, two favorite Vivaldi violin concertos that...

Mark Obert-Thorn, who produced Pristine’s release of Bronislaw Huberman’s studio recordings of violin concertos by Bach and Mozart (No. 3) as well as a live performance...

The Goldberg Variations have benefited (or suffered, depending on your point of view) from almost countless transcriptions: for string orchestra, string quartet, string trio (by far...

Less than a generation ago, it seemed as if playing Bach on a modern piano would become a sort of quaint anachronism, washed away by the...

My reaction to Simone Dinnerstein’s debut album of Bach’s Goldberg Variations was not a positive one, and so, not wanting to heap criticism on the head...

These four short Masses (and two motets) were previously issued on two single discs. I liked them both then (see Fanfare 32:4 and 34:4), and rehearing...

When it comes to Bach’s three sonatas for gamba and keyboard, you have basically three choices for your preferred string instrument: an actual gamba, a viola,...

Johann Sebastian Bach’s music for lute has been something of a question mark. It is known that one of his friends was Silvius Leopold Weiss, and...

With so many great and wonderful versions of these pieces out there, not to mention all the excellent performances of the complete Miraculous Mandarin and not...

This is one of those releases that I really want to like more than I do. Edward Gardner has turned in some impressive readings of Britten,...

The Juilliard Quartet—Robert Mann (vn), Robert Kolf (vn), Raphael Hilyer (va), Arthur Winograd (vc)—was founded in 1946. These 1949 recordings were its first, and the first...

Ross Bauer (b. 1951) is a former jazz saxophonist who now writes modern classical music. Hayes Biggs’s liner notes emphasize how Bauer felt himself drawn to...

CPO has decided to release as one set its three albums of Franz Ignaz Beck’s symphonies, recorded by Michael Schneider and La Stagione Frankfurt. It’s a...

Burton Beerman’s Tikvah is a “Chamber Oratorio.” Beerman is distinguished artist professor at Bowling Green State University. The 2006 world premiere of this piece included video...

Let me preface this review with three disclaimers: First, I’m not prepared to state categorically and beyond a shadow of a doubt that this 86-disc boxed...

Combining two Beethoven concerto recordings by Ferenc Fricsay is a splendid idea. As we know from his striking and individual “Eroica” in his Great Conductors of...

When I first opened the foldout CD packaging and noted that Gardiner’s performance of the Missa Solemnis runs only 70 minutes, I immediately became crestfallen. That...

Reviewing an album by Inna Faliks titled Sound of Verse in 33:3, I described her program of works by Boris Pasternak, Ravel, and Rachmaninoff as “intelligently...

This is Volume 2 in the Quartetto di Cremona’s Beethoven string quartet cycle. I enthused at length over Volume 1 in 37:1, detailing a number of...

In this same issue, either above or below, you should find a review of Brilliant’s complete Beethoven edition on 86 discs, another example of how the...

Angela Hewitt is building her Beethoven cycle circumspectly and slowly. This is only the fourth volume to appear in seven years, and the tally of sonatas...

This is a notable debut recording. Thanks to Igor Levit’s remarkably even touch and precise rhythmic control, the scores’ details, minutely realized, are fashioned into lucid,...

Menahem Pressler, who turned 90 last December, is one of today’s most significant actively performing pianists. His career has spanned nearly 70 years and has included...

I suppose that some people know that these two symphonies had their premieres at the same concert, which also included the first performances of the

Carlos Kleiber’s interpretation of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony is considered by many people (myself included) to be the greatest Beethoven performance of at least the last half...

Here, for all piano trio aficionados, is the complete-complete oeuvre of Beethoven in that genre. This set includes not only all the opus-numbered trios, not only...

This was a difficult recording to review. For one thing, half the roles in this sacred cantata (for such it really is) are not identified, therefore...

Three months before I saw this DVD, I watched the Metropolitan Opera’s production of Les Troyens, in fact the very performance in which tenor Bryan Hymel...