Issue 38:6
July/Aug 2015
Magazine Contents

Classical Recordings Pg. 3

These charming performances return us to musical history in several ways. The Pilsen Philharmonic is an 80-year-old Czech ensemble which still plays with a suggestion of...

Karel Mark Chichon is a British-born conductor of Gibraltarian parentage. He sets in motion here a complete Dvořák symphonic cycle with the German Radio Symphony Orchestra,...

This exceptional recording manages what everyone attempts but seldom achieves—a genuine new take on a warhorse. As listeners have come to expect from Robin Ticciati’s Berlioz...

The British conductor Robin Ticciati, who at 35 occupies the prestigious post of music director at the Glyndebourne Opera, had the mixed blessing of being noticed...

Attitudes toward this oratorio (a generic term Elgar disliked) vary considerably. In its own time, John Henry Newman’s heart-on-sleeve Roman Catholic piety and open embrace of...

In 1896 and 1897, Edward Elgar, who turned 40 in the latter year, was toiling in the trenches, producing works of real quality, often with the...

Edward Elgar’s First Symphony has long proved a lure to foreign-born conductors, beginning with the work’s dedicatee, Hans Richter. Two of my favorite recordings of the...

Elgar’s music is so perpetually recorded in Britain that we can watch him lose weight, pound by pound, over the last 50 years. The grandeur of...

Anyone who doesn’t hear it on a regular basis (or hasn’t been following its recent series of recordings for Chandos with various conductors) might be surprised...

As collectors know, exploring outside the basic repertory is often both frustrating and rewarding. The search for significant neglected music, one learns early, is not as...

This performance of Nights in the Gardens of Spain moves at a slower pace than I like, at least in the opening movement … and so...

Like a velveteen leopard in the underbrush, Fauré’s nocturnes lie in wait. They spring quite a surprise on anyone who has pigeonholed the composer as essentially...

The Jade Duo was founded in New York as recently as 2012 by two prize-winning Chinese musicians, Shuai Shi, violin, and Zhen Chen, piano. This is...

We all tend to expect sensational technique from Chinese soloists—what might be called the Lang Lang effect—but quietly the rising Chinese musicians are becoming well versed...

Violinist Shuai Shi and pianist Zhen Chen, billing themselves as the “Jade Duo,” have chosen sonatas by Fauré, Schumann, and Bartók for their premiere recording. Their...

It is tempting to peg short-lived Alexander Ernst Fesca (1820–1849) as yet another victim in the not insignificant number of early 19th-century composers who had the...

Irving Fine (1914–1962) might be considered the great lost light of Boston’s 20th-century musical history. He died tragically young, and seemed just poised to truly take...

Our esteemed editor has wisely refrained from sending me any music by Vincent d’Indy to review for this cycle lest I be tempted to characterize my...

Abetted by Chamorel, Franck’s “serene anxiety” is a barely restrained impetuosity—d’Alba’s élan edged in occasional rasp—an impatience, even, never less than impassioned. Chez Chausson, the Concert...

Like his nephew Giovanni, Andrea Gabrieli (1533–85) served at San Marco but not as maestro di cappella . Andrea was second organist under Claudio Merulo from...

“Messrs. Gilbert and Sullivan’s new opera, The Pirates of Penzance , was produced for the first time at the Fifth-Avenue Theatre last night, to an audience...

Princess Ida is Gilbert and Sullivan’s eighth operetta (of 14), opening in January of 1884 at the London Savoy Theatre. At best it was a modest...

The Madison Savoyards are over 50 years old, and have maintained a quite remarkable consistency of Gilbert and Sullivan performance in Madison, Wisconsin. They are rightly...

Arkadia previously issued this famous 1959 recording on CD. On that release, and everywhere else I’ve seen it online, the bass’s last name is spelled Perrotta,...

Michael Gordon (b. 1956) is one of the founders of new music collective Bang on a Can. As a composer, his work is well represented on...

A pupil of Harrison Birtwistle, associate head of research at the Royal College of Music, winner of numerous awards and recipient of many prestigious commissions, David...

This is a lovely combination of repertoire—two relatively gentle, somewhat intimate choral works from the Romantic era. The Gounod was the last work he completed. He...

Soprano Danielle Talamantes’s debut album is a pleasing and stylish collection of songs by three Spanish composers whose careers and musical goals intertwined in the early...

Couplings of a pair of Spanish Renaissance composers have been common enough, and these two came to us at least twice from Peter Phillips (

What this extraordinarily engrossing collection of 21 brief piano works is emphatically not is a series of arrangements of Irish folk tunes. Rather, the “Miniatures” consist...

As a lad, George Frédéric Handel is said to have remarked that the oboe was his favorite instrument, claiming to write “like the devil” for it....

No, you have not read wrong, and I did not leave anything out of the headnote. This is a recording of the Music for the Royal...

This wonderfully fluid, relaxed, yet buoyant performance of the Water Music is a throwback to the days of Karl Ristenpart or the young Helmuth Rilling, meaning...

This disc combines the orchestral suite from John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby with an instrumental work and the song cycle Closer to My Own Life,...

This is one of those frustrating releases that, while decent on its own terms, could have been significantly better with a bit more sensible judgment. While...

Anne-Marie McDermott has been getting appreciative (or better) reviews in these pages for years, for her interpretation of works by Prokofiev, Chopin, Gershwin, Mozart, Bach, Amy...

I missed the earlier release from these performers of Haydn’s symphonies Nos. 88, 101, and 104 (Philharmonia Baroque PBP-02). James H. North reviewed it in 2011...

Trio Jean Paul (Eckart Heilingers, piano; Ulf Schneider, violin; Martin Lőhr, cello) has been an ensemble since 1991; it covers a wide repertoire, from Haydn to...

This is an important release that for the first time makes available Bernard Herrmann’s complete Oscar-nominated score for Brian De Palma’s Obsession , plus a reissue...

Edward Burlingame Hill (1872–1960), once a very well known American composer, has since become forgotten and marginalized as time has marched on. Although he grew up...

Edward Burlingame Hill (1872–1960), a Harvard graduate himself, served for 32 years on the music faculty of Harvard University, then as now a respectable rather than...

Hindemith’s Sonata for Alto Horn and Piano is also available in versions for French horn and for alto saxophone—it’s even played by a trombone on an...

David Korevaar is a distinguished pianist who has played a wide variety of music, from Bach to Lowell Liebermann, not only in such expected venues as...

Many, many years ago, when the earth was green and Climate Change was just called Weather, I had an LP recording of this very same Hoffmann...

I’ve had a lot to say about Simeon ten Holt (1923–2012) in these pages, and specifically about his Canto Ostinato , a Minimalist masterpiece that has...

It is surprising that the music of Alan Hovhaness is not better known these days. He was never an obscure figure, and was championed by major...

Reviewing the Gould Piano Trio’s Naxos disc of Hummel piano trios in 38:4, I noted that it was labeled Volume 1 in what promised to be...

One must admire the enterprising Malibran company for releasing what is, to my knowledge, the first recording of Vincent d’Indy’s opera Fervaal . This was a...

What does the music of Charles Ives sound like with an Australian orchestra and a British conductor? Different, one is tempted to say, but not really....

The big news in this valuable and intriguing album is the world premiere recording of Gordon Jacob’s Concerto No. 1 for Piano and String Orchestra which,...

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Be Missed!