Issue 39:1
Sept/Oct 2015
Magazine Contents

Classical Recordings

Whether it was Alfred Cortot or Artur Schnabel who once wisely opined that a musician is only as good as his ability to navigate the transitions...

This budget reissue brings us the eminent German violinist Christian Tetzlaff as he was in 2005, joining David Zinman as part of a much admired complete...

Toscanini’s 1935 Philharmonic Missa solemnis on Immortal Performances was reviewed by Mortimer Frank in 2011 ( Fanfare 34:6) and by Boyd Pomeroy in the same issue....

In an essay accompanying this reissue of two legendary performances, the great music critic John Steane, to whom the release is dedicated in memoriam, comments: “Verdi...

Those who like their late Beethoven quartets played in a taut manner but without the brisk tempos that Beethoven wrote will love this set. The Alcan...

Just over two years ago, in Fanfare 36:6, I had the privilege of interviewing all four members of the Arianna String Quartet and of reviewing the...

A joint production of Cavi, BR Klassik, and Deutsches Museum, this remarkable compendium is a strong candidate for year-end Fanfare honors, and seems to this listener...

This is a continuation of Paavali Jumppanen’s Beethoven cycle. The first installment, containing the first three sonatas plus the No. 28 and the “Hammerklavier,” was reviewed...

Under the rubric Annie Fischer: The Essential Collection , we get a sampling of the great pianist’s art in from the 1950s to the late 1970s—these...

What is it about Beethoven’s last three piano sonatas that so fascinate us as both players and listeners? Is it the whole aspect of late style...

These are Vols. 1 and 2 of the complete Beethoven violin sonatas as performed by Imberger and Korstick (but look carefully: Vol. 1 is not the...

By the time Fanfare subscribers receive this published issue, it will be one year since Frans Brüggen’s death. His passing ended a remarkable musical career: a...

An all but extinct style of Beethoven—grandly eloquent, heroic, and monumental—is identified with illustrious figures such as Furtwängler and Klemperer. By comparison, the Dutch conductor Paul...

Here are two Beethoven performances displaying Karajan’s typical mastery and mannerisms. He conducts with his eyes closed—never the slightest peek—which is mesmerizing and eerie at the...

To a London audience that revered the epic, stoical Beethoven of Otto Klemperer, his spiritual successor, Klaus Tennstedt, must have occasioned the same allegiance—there’s not much...

Hard on the heels of the TrioVanBeethoven’s Volume 1 of Beethoven’s piano trios, reviewed in 38:5, comes the ensemble’s Volume 2, and with it the biggie,...

In recent issues, I’ve been extolling the virtues of the Trio Élégiaque for its five-disc Beethoven piano trios intégrale on Brilliant Classics, and not only for...

Bel Canto , the debut recital disc by Mexican tenor Jesús León, provides considerable strengths and pleasure. León’s voice has silvery beauty and welcome security through...

Edita Gruberova’s career is almost becoming as ludicrous as Plácido Domingo’s septuagenarian guzzling up of All Operatic Repertoire. As I write, the near 70 year old...

Martin Crimp’s libretto is set 800 years ago (the tale comes from a 13th-century French short story). The Protector is a brute who brags that he...

This, and the other Ozawa Berlioz disc reviewed below, were recorded by DG in 1973 as quadraphonic releases, but only the Symphonie fantastique was issued in...

Here are works I really enjoy conducted by a conductor I generally admire and a violist-violinist I really love, so this review was pretty close to...

This album, titled Of Madness and Love, presents musical works by Berlioz inspired by William Shakespeare. In general I am against “theme” albums of this sort...

About two years ago I reviewed a Praga reissue of the Monteux/Vienna Symphonie fantastique and left no doubt that I was quite impressed by the sane,...

This SACD release of another Ozawa-Berlioz DG quadraphonic recording was actually taped when Ozawa was still music director of the San Francisco Symphony (February 1973). As...

This splendid Symphonie fantastique is part of Pentatone’s ongoing efforts to resurrect quadraphonic recordings from the late 1960s through the early 1980s and update them with...

Alexandre Dossin’s luminous, expansive playing is a great delight from the beginning to the end of this disc. With his wonderful technical control, more than Bernstein...

One of the frustrations of reviewing recordings from downloads, though, admittedly, it’s not a frequent occurrence, is a new release, such as this one, that comes...

Deutsche Grammophon made a series of quadraphonic recordings from the 1960s through the early 1980s. As with their generally successful Philips RQR releases, Pentatone is now...

Some composers are so typecast by a single big-hit work that the casual classical music listener is surprised to learn that they actually wrote other works...

This CD represents vintage Naxos, presenting a collection of rarely heard music by an important composer. The major work is Roma , conceived originally as a...

Cellist Sol Gabetta’s new album takes its name from one of Ernest Bloch’s works from his Jewish Life series, pieces the cellist says she frequently has...

Ernest Bloch (1880–1959) ranks as one of the greatest composers whose works have yet to achieve widespread recognition. Concertgoers might be familiar with Schelomo or the...

This is the 10th (!) volume in Brilliant Classics’ series of Boccherini’s string quartets and quintets. Previous volumes were performed by an ensemble called La Magnifica...

Luigi Boccherini is not the first composer to devote considerable attention to the cello, nor is he the last, but I think it’s safe to safe...

To paraphrase Jean-Baptiste Cartier (whose complete quote is found in the booklet notes of this disc), “when God tells man something in music, he uses Haydn,...

Whenever the Brahms Violin Concerto is paired on a disc with the Double Concerto, the soloists are generally household names (if your household is musically inclined)...

The editor meant well, I know he did! He sent me one of my favorite works by probably my favorite composer (let’s hope Schubert is not...

If you are after a Requiem that’s solemn without being religious, this earthbound performance fits the bill. Brahms’s intention to write a New Testament Requiem in...

The Japanese-German pianist Sophie-Mayuko Vetter has a fascinating background. Her father was Michael Vetter, a recorder player who specialized in the avant-garde—Stockhausen wrote music for him—and...

On this superb recording, 2011 Cleveland International Piano Competition first-prize winner Alexander Schimpf continues his survey of late-period piano works by canonical composers. His recording career...

Eloquence continues to dig into Decca’s archives to make available these “first international release on CD” recordings. The latest offering from this source is the disc...

The centerpiece of this release, the Brahms Clarinet Quintet, barely hints at where events are leading. The back story, which occupies most of the program notes,...

This collection, titled Brahms: The Hungarian Connection , is really two programs in one. The central item is the Clarinet Quintet, taking well over half the...

Here is a case of non-truth-in-advertising. This set was being plugged under the name of Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos (his name comes first on the front...

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Be Missed!