RECENT: Defining Our Field - what is 'classical music' to us, why are we involved and what can we learn from our differences? Read John Dante Prevedini's essay, watch the panel discussion and make your own comments.
Classical music news. Obituary - Mady Mesplé (1931-2020)
CD Spotlight. Beautifully Realized - Richard Harwood's EMI debut, heard by the late Howard Smith. 'Harwood never once strives for effect ...'
CD Spotlight. Collaborative Effect - Martha Argerich and friends in Lugano, heard by Barbara Sealock. 'Among the recorded gems of 2013 ...'
CD Spotlight. Deeply Affecting - Ian Bostridge sings Benjamin Britten, heard by Andrew Schartmann. '... Bostridge conveys the emotional content ... with unwavering conviction.'
CD Spotlight. A Manipulating Baton - Rachmaninov orchestral music, heard by Ron Bierman. 'Vasily Petrenko gives us an extreme interpretation ...'
CD Spotlight. Tip Top Music - Tine Thing Helseth and Kathryn Stott, heard by Howard Smith. 'Ever full of daring ...'
CD Spotlight. Top Notch - Magdalena Kozená's Carmen, recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... sheer and utter brilliance in every department.'
CD Spotlight. Ethereal and Beautiful - Karl Jenkins' 'The Peacemakers', heard by Gerald Fenech. '... some rather inspired music.'
CD Spotlight. Quirkily Playful - Vilde Frang plays Tchaikovsky and Nielsen, heard by Robert Anderson. '... exhilarating to the highest degree.'
CD Spotlight. Gripping Intensity - Simon Rattle's new Bruckner 9, recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... polished and vigorous performances ...'
CD Spotlight. Consummate Mastery - Beethoven Piano Concertos, recommended by Howard Smith. '... worth a king's ransom.'
CD Spotlight. Somewhat Lacklustre - Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich, heard by Howard Smith. '... a tumultuous, dynamic conclusion.'
Perfection Itself - Michail Lifits at London's Wigmore Hall delights Bill Newman
Malcolm Smith (1932-2011) - A celebration, not an obituary, by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Sovereign Advocacy - Haydn, Hummel, Leopold Mozart and Neruda trumpet concertos, recommended by Howard Smith. '... expect nothing but the best ...'
CD Spotlight. Deeply Satisfying - Elena Kuschnerova plays J S Bach, selected by Howard Smith. '... decisive and fresh as a dewfall.'
An Ever-Active Hive - Robert Anderson examines the latest score from Acuta Music
CD Spotlight. Quite Breathtaking - David Korevaar plays Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier, admired by Howard Smith. '... lots to admire ...'
Ensemble. An Epic Opera - Rossini's 'William Tell', from Rome to the BBC Proms, by Giuseppe Pennisi
Profile. Two Americans in Paris - Maria Nockin talks to Vivica Genaux and Lawrence Brownlee
Ensemble. Superb from the word 'go' - Donizetti's last Tudor Queen returns to Rome, and Carmela Remigio enchants Giuseppe Pennisi
CD Spotlight. Marvelously Incisive - Rózsa and Korngold violin concertos, recommended by Howard Smith. '... breathtaking virtuosity from soloist and orchestra alike.'
CD Spotlight. Quite Magical - Marin Alsop conducts Dvorák Symphonies, enjoyed by Howard Smith. 'The Baltimores' finale sings and blazes with equal compulsion ...'
CD Spotlight. Thoughtfully Appealing - Judith Lambden plays J S Bach, heard by Howard Smith. '... a great deal to admire ...'
CD Spotlight. Thrilling Mastery - Tanja Becker-Bender plays Paganini, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... sparkling clarity and power ...'
Ensemble. A Cross Section - Bill Newman comments on some recent concerts at London's Wigmore Hall
CD Spotlight. Formidably Difficult - Antonín Dvorák's Piano Concerto, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. '... commendable, as far as it goes.'
Ask Alice - On thin ankles and recordings, with classical music agony aunt Alice McVeigh
CD Spotlight. A Flowing Delivery - Bach Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin, heard by Howard Smith. '... vital technical flair ...'
CD Spotlight. Lovely Accounts - Chamber music by Robert Schumann, heard by Howard Smith. '... the performances suffer from a worrying anemia ...'
CD Spotlight. Invigoratingly Natural - Van Beinum conducts Mahler, recommended by Howard Smith. '... a tad less frenetic ...'
CD Spotlight. Beauty of Timbre - Vivica Genaux sings Vivaldi, heard by Maria Nockin. 'Genaux's diction is excellent ...'
CD Spotlight. Panache and Authority - Orchestral music by Richard Strauss, reviewed by Gerald Fenech. '... highly recommended ...'
CD Spotlight. Highly Challenging - Music for unaccompanied violin, heard by Howard Smith. '... searching performance ...'
Ensemble. Perfectly Measured - Bill Newman listens to Aldo Ciccolini
CD Spotlight. Faultless Performances - Beethoven from The Nash Ensemble, welcomed by Howard Smith. '... a class of its own.'
CD Spotlight. In Calm and Storm - John Hardy's 'Blue Letters from Tanganyika', reviewed by Howard Smith. '... colorful, filmic, and open to pleasurable listening ...'
CD Spotlight. Consistently Solid - Kurt Masur and others conduct Mendelssohn, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... too often short on graciousness, charm or buoyancy.'
CD Spotlight. Eminently Competitive - Mozart works for clarinet, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... Paul Dean demonstrates his exemplary fluency ...'
Record Box. An Impressive Crispness - The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra plays Stravinsky, heard by Patric Standford
A Labour of Love - John Suchet's 'The Treasures of Beethoven', read by Howard Smith
Beautifully Arranged - 'Antal Doráti and the joy of making music' by Richard Chlupaty, reviewed by Anna L Franco
Ensemble. Creative Heritage - Regrets and remedies, the Wigmore way, by Bill Newman
DVD Spotlight. Sensuous Lyricism - Stravinsky's 'Le Rossignol', reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... both wondrous and distracting.'
CD Spotlight. A Curious Recital - Paul Calistus-Ashley plays Poulenc, Schubert and Dett, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... verve and sensitivity.'
Four Strings to his Violin - Many strings to his bow ... Howard Smith reports on Marat Bisengaliev's third tour of New Zealand
DVD Spotlight. Moving and Powerful - Gershwin's 'Porgy and Bess', appreciated by Robert Anderson. 'The work is in the safest possible hands ...'
Life's Fulfilment - Bill Newman recalls the affection he felt for the great Hungarian conductor-composer Antal Doráti, who would have been 100 years old today
CD Spotlight. Schnabel and Richter - Piano music by Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... as varied as the works themselves.'
Profile. Sounds amazing - Bill Newman talks to Jeremy Backhouse, Director of the Vasari Singers
CD Spotlight. Tender longing - Daniil Shtoda sings Russian songs, reviewed by David Wilkins. '... wonderfully expressive ...'
Profile. A singing instrument - Martino Tirimo discusses the piano and its music with Bill Newman
Mind my harpsichord! - In affectionate memory of Igor Kipnis, close friend and musical collaborator, by Bill Newman
Record box - Trawling for treasure. Bill Newman seeks out Golden Age performers now reinstated on CD. Annie Fischer, Menuhin and Rostropovich on BBC Legends