Worthy music worthily captured by the excellent Houstonites.
PENDERECKI: A Sea of Dreams Did Breathe on Me – Olga Pasichnyk, sop./Ewa Marcienic, mezzo/Jaroslaw Bręk, bar./ Warsaw Philharmonic Choir/Warsaw Philharmonic Orch./ Antoni Wit – Naxos
Absolutely atmospheric settings from this ever-adapting master.
A Cecilian smorgasbord of excellent music from two centuries.
GOUNOD: Requiem in C Major; DVORAK: Mass in D Major – Anne Bretschneider, sop./ Christine Lichtenberg, alto/ Holger Marks, tenor/ Georg Witt, bass/ Hye-Lin Hur, organ/ Rundfunkchor Berlin/ Polyphonia Ensemble Berlin/ Risto Joost – Carus
Two deliberately under-stated choral works testify to the faith, pious and artistic of two choral masters.
“Canciones espanolas” = ENRIQUE GRANADOS: La maja y el ruisenor from Goyescas; Canciones amatorias; MANUEL DE FALLA: Siete canciones populares espanolas; JOAQUÍN TURINA: Tres arias – Danielle Talamantes, sop./ Henry Dehlinger, p. – MSR
Get this amazing disc, and get it now. I don’t know what else to say.
DEBUSSY: Songs, Vol. 3 [TrackList follows] – Jennifer France, sop./ Jonathan McGovern, bar./ Malcolm Martineau, piano – Hyperion
Volume 3 in Hyperion’s series might be the best yet.
JOHN FRANDSEN: Requiem – Teitur, vocal/ Sine Bundgaard, sop./ Andrea Pellegrini, mezzo-sop./ Peter Lodahl, tenor/ Halvor Fr. Melien, bass/ Danish Nat. Concert Choir/ Danish Nat. Sym. Orch./ Henrik Vagn Christensen – DaCapo
An enormous undertaking with terrific music, unfortunately flawed by the choice of soloist.
BELLINI: Norma (complete opera) – Cecilia Bartoli (Norma)/ Sumi Jo (Adalgisa)/ John Osborn (Pollione)/ International Ch. Vocalists/ Orch. La Scintilla/ Giovanni Antonini – Decca (2 discs)
A reconstruction according to the best guess and most up to date scholarship available—but is it moving?
Progressive jazz which touches on global tumult and individual emotionalism.
A beautifully captivating film of Gluck’s most famous work in its original guise.
“Moments of Love” = BRITTEN: Cabaret Songs (selections); HAHN: Le printemps; Le rossignol des lilas; Fumée; Dans la nuit; L’heure exquise; RAVEL: Trois poemes de Stephane Mallarmé; SAINT-SAËNS: Aimons-nous; L’attente (Hugo); La coccinelle; Tournoiement ‘Songe d’opium’; Danse macabre; WYNER: The Second Madrigal: Voices of Women – Dominque Labelle, sop./ Yehudi Wyner, p. – Bridge
Labelle turns to France with outstanding success.
Bold and gutsy, this latest outing from Prohaska sets a new bar.
Rita Gorr Sings French Opera = Rita Gorr, sop./ Orch. du Theatre National de l’Opera/ Orch. de la Societe des Concerts du Conservatoire/ Andre Cluytens/ Georges Pretre – Guild
Belgian soprano Rita Gorr brings a powerful luster to six staples of the French operatic repertory.
A very special previously-unreleased recording for John Coltrane fans.
JAMES PRIMOSCH: Sacred Songs = From a Book of Hours; Four Sacred Songs; Dark the Star; Holy the Firm – Soloists/ 21st Cen. Consort/ Christopher Kendall – Bridge
Sacred music for those who take such things seriously.
A French Baroque Diva: Arias for Marie Fel – Carolyn Sampson, sop./ Ex Cathedra/ Jeffrey Skidmore – Hyperion
Carolyn Sampson brings to light the artistry of one of the greatest artists of the enlightenment, Marie Fel—and the results are superb.
BRITTEN: War Requiem – Orchestra, Chorus and Boys’ Choir of the Academia Nazionale di Santa Cecelia (Roma)/ Antonio Pappano/ Soloists: Anna Netrebko, sop./ Ian Bostridge, tenor/ Thomas Hampson, bar. – Warner Classics
An all-star cast (Netrebko, Bostridge, Hampson, Pappano) performs Britten’s War Requiem.
The Voice of Emotion II = Montserrat Figueras, soprano/ Hesperion XX-XXI/ Jordi Savall – AliaVox SACD+2 DVDs
Part II of a worthy and very fine tribute to a unique and highly-gifted artist.
GRIEG: Six Ibsen Songs; 12 Vinje Songs; Haugtussa – Marianne Beate Kielland, mezzo-sop./ Nils Anders Mortensen, p. – Lawo Classics (stereo)
An absolutely mandatory release of three of the greatest song cycles ever written—performed to perfection.
GRIEG: Complete Orchestral Works – soloists/ Malmo Sym. & Royal Scottish Sym./ Bjarte Engeset – Naxos (8 CDs)
The collected Grieg orchestral works under one roof: romantic, melodious, often gripping and infinitely attractive.
I was astounded at Hendricks’s soluble limpidity and profound emotion in this recording.
A brilliant Boheme from the forces at one of the most innovative opera centers in the world.