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