CD Spotlight. A Very Joyous Disc - Brahms arranged by Kenneth Woods impresses Alice McVeigh. '... this is an excellent performance representing a useful, joyful and even inspired addition to the orchestral repertoire.'
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French Romanticism - George Colerick discusses orchestral music by Berlioz, Saint-Saëns, Delibes, Lalo, d'Indy, Debussy, Ravel, Honegger, Poulenc, Milhaud and others
CD Spotlight. Truly Lovely - Music by Petr Eben for girls' choir impresses Geoff Pearce. 'This great disc of an exceptional girls' choir performing the work of one of Bohemia's most important voices does not disappoint in any way ...'
Ensemble. Back to the Future - Giuseppe Pennisi attends a gala evening in Rome dedicated to two experimental works
Ensemble. Lieder with Harp - Giuseppe Pennisi reports on a world tour by Diana Damrau and Xavier de Maistre
A Subtle Approach - Mike Wheeler listens to organ music by Leighton, Franck, J S Bach and Henri Mulet, played by Edward Turner at Derby Cathedral
CD Spotlight. Understated Sensuousness - Symphonies by Nikolay Myaskovsky intrigue Geoff Pearce. '... the Ural Youth Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Alexander Rudin) plays very well indeed, especially considering the age of the players. I am particularly impressed by the woodwind and brass, which never fail to impress.'
Ensemble. Packed With Good Things - Roderic Dunnett reports from the 2019 Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester
All Reeds Blazing - Roger Sayer at the Derby Cathedral organ console impresses Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Myths and Modernity - Giuseppe Pennisi sends his first report from the 2019 Salzburg Festival
CD Spotlight. Triumphant Splendour - Gerald Fenech commends the reissue of Roger Norrington's recording of Elgar's Symphony No 1 with the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra. '... Norrington conveys the sweep of the score spontaneously in one breath and takes his players on a headlong ride to the finish which is simply spinetingling.'
Vividly Projected - Mike Wheeler listens to J S Bach, Gustav Holst, George Dyson, David Bednall, Edward Bairstow, César Franck, Purcell Mansfield, Judith Weir and Marcel Dupré, played by organist Sachin Gunga
CD Spotlight. Hauntingly Beautiful - Rachmaninov's Vespers, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Although the choir is not Russian, performances are as passionately devotional as one can expect, particularly the soprano and bass sections, who capture the wide range of dynamics with astounding clarity and vision.'
Classical music news. Obituary - Barrington Pheloung (1954-2019)
Lost Music for Lost Souls - Richard Meszto tells the story of the re-discovery of Allan Rae's music for 'Charles Manson AKA Jesus Christ', a play by Fabian Jennings
Ensemble. A Double Bridge - Giuseppe Pennisi attends 'Sarang è Amore' at the Korean Cultural Institute in Rome
Profile. Only the Screen - Ona Jarmalavičiūtė talks to the Belgian singer and conductor Tore Tom Denys
Bright and Clear - Alexander Binns plays organ music by Alfred Hollins, Harrison Oxley, Reginald Goss-Custard, Maurice Duruflé, Joseph Bonnet and César Franck, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Magnificent Symphonies - Beethoven, Shostakovich and Musorgsky from Yannick Nézet-Séguin and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra impress Patrick Maxwell
CD Spotlight. Bold Simplicity - Patrick Maxwell listens to music from Wadham College Chapel, Oxford. 'The choral sound is well produced, if at times lacking in cohesion, and the interpretations at the hands of Katharine Pardee are well handled.'
Ensemble. Fierce Commitment - Gillian Moore talks about her book 'The Rite of Spring. The Music of Modernity' and then Philip Moore and Hugh Watkins play Stravinsky's 'Le Sacre du printemps', preceded by John Adams' 'Hallelujah Junction', all reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Mastery and Versatility - Giuseppe Pennisi attends three Tokyo Ballet performances in Rome
CD Spotlight. A Timely Resurrection - Music by Kurt Weill, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Recorded seventeen years ago, this reissue retains its freshness remarkably well, and the performance of both works is delivered with great elegance and elan.'
Ensemble. A Neat Idea - A song recital by James Gaughan and David Hammond, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Jollity Ultimately Triumphs - Orchestral music by Dmitri Kabalevsky, heard by Geoff Pearce. 'I am pleased to see this interesting disc, as it showcases an important composer from the Soviet era.'
CD Spotlight. Lost Gems Unearthed - Gerald Fenech listens to music by contemporaries of the Strauss family. 'John Georgiadis deserves immense credit not only for his painstaking research and wonderful arrangements, but also for his vibrant and energetic conducting that breathes new life into an era that once celebrated life with an unparalleled exuberance.'
Ensemble. Joyful Combinations - Patrick Maxwell listens to Britten, McDowall, Horovitz and James Bassi, performed by Janet Lincé and The New Choir
CD Spotlight. His Music Glows - Richard Meszto listens to works by Leonard Bernstein. 'Iain Sutherland leads the Hannover Philharmonic in these fine and well thought out performances.'
Ensemble. San Francisco's Starry Rusalka - James Sohre sends the last of three reports from San Francisco Opera
Ensemble. A Repertory 'Tosca' - Giuseppe Pennisi considers Puccini's opera as a real orchestral masterpiece
Classical music news. Obituary - Franco Zeffirelli (1923-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Sven-David Sandström (1942-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Ib Nørholm (1931-2019)
Ensemble. Three Operas in Three Different Styles - Anett Fodor reports from Miskolc on La bohème, The Golden Dragon, Duke Bluebeard's Castle and a symphonic work by Scriabin
Pleasingly Eclectic - Mike Wheeler listens to James Curnow, J S Bach, Andrew Downes, Simon Lesley, Randy Newman, Lennon and McCartney, and Irving Berlin from Curzon Brass
CD Spotlight. From Russia with Love - Musorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov and Liadov orchestral music from Dmitry Kitajenko and the Gurzenich Orchestra, Cologne, impresses Gerald Fenech. 'Kitajenko draws some gorgeous playing from his Cologne forces, and dynamic and tempo markings are observed with fidelity. Also, orchestral textures are both warm and revealing of inner detail.'
A Charming Touch - Mike Wheeler listens to Beethoven, Brahms, Granados and Mompou, played by Ingrid Cusidó
Ensemble. 'Music Makes a Town' - Anett Fodor reports from the opening gala of the 2019 Bartók Plus Opera Festival
Microtonal Trills and Tremolos - Luca Luciano pushes the boundaries of clarinet playing, impressing Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Particularly Thrilling - Music for strings by Alfonso Romero Asenjo intrigues Geoff Pearce. 'It showcases the composer's skill in writing for strings, and at the same time one can sense his development as a composer.'
Ensemble. On the High and Open Sea - Giuseppe Pennisi samples Italy's 2019 Ravenna Summer Festival
Ensemble. From the Poignant to the Zany - Russian-born musicians Yulia Northridge and Ekaterina Shetliffe, heard by Mike Wheeler
Classical music news. Obituary - François-René Tranchefort (c1933-2019)
Ensemble. A Supernatural Glow - Giuseppe Pennisi describes the Fiery Angel that hangs over Rome
CD Spotlight. Sheer Musicianship - Geoff Pearce listens to music for viola, played by Matthew Lipman. '... a delight for the listener and aficionados of the viola.'
Classical music news. Obituary - Alfred Janson (1937-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Étienne Perruchon (1958-2019)
Profile. Bartók: The Inspired Collector - Anett Fodor discusses the Hungarian composer's love of both folk music and nature
Classical music news. Obituary - Arif Melikov (1933-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Georg Katzer (1935-2019)
Ensemble. Bravado and Introspection - Mike Wheeler listens to Rachmaninov and Shostakovich from Daniel Kharitonov, Vladimir Ashkenazy and the Philharmonia Orchestra
Ensemble. A Superb Mix of Music and Visuals - 'Snow White' danced to music by Gustav Mahler, experienced by Giuseppe Pennisi
CD Spotlight. A Sense and Taste for the Infinite - Choral music by Rautavaara, Wennäkoski and Livorski impresses Gerald Fenech. 'For those who love contemporary choral singing, this disc should prove a real revelation ...'
Ensemble. Exemplary Clarity - Haydn, Glass and Beethoven from the Marmen Quartet, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Rather Peculiar Opera - The new production of 'Ariadne auf Naxos' at La Scala Milan, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Venus Unwrapped - Keith Bramich is impressed by Noriko Ogawa, Kenneth Woods and the strings of the English Symphony Orchestra
Ensemble. Slavic Melancholy - Chris Swann, the strings of Sinfonia Viva and Frank Zielhorst perform Mozart, Arensky, Finzi and Tchaikovsky in a new performance space, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Classical music news. Obituary - Heather Harper (1930-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Atli Heimir Sveinsson (1938-2019)
Ensemble. A Work of Great Integrity - Mike Wheeler listens to 'Lauda Creatoris' by Richard Roddis, plus choral music by Handel, Parry, André Caplet, Alessandro Costantini, Nancy Telfer and Dan Miller
CD Spotlight. Brilliantly Executed - John Kitchen plays British Light Music by Arthur Sullivan and Michael Thomson, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'A gem of a disc full of wit, warmth and colour ...'
Ensemble. A Not so Merry Widow - Damiano Michieletto's joint venture with La Fenice is not a success in Rome, as described by Giuseppe Pennisi
CD Spotlight. A Compelling Disc - Schoenberg piano music, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'Yoko Hirota's performances here are truly exceptional ...'
Book review. A Multi-art Extravaganza - Ron Bierman reads Gillian Moore's 'The Rite of Spring, the Music of Modernity'
Ensemble. Three Premieres in Rome - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Ivan Fidele, Taneyev, Scriabin and Stravinsky
Ensemble. Near-miraculous - Bach, Copland, Gibbons, Ramsey, Tomkins, Walton, Weelkes and Whitacre from Richard Roddis and the Derwent Singers, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. A True Czech Operatic Masterpiece - Gerald Fenech listens to Janáček's 'The Cunning Little Vixen'. 'This performance from Frankfurt has everything going for it ...'
Classical music news. Obituary - Ruth-Margret Pütz (1930-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Marilyn Mason (1925-2019)
Ensemble. A Timeless Composition - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to interweaved movements from Beethoven and Ligeti, played by Herbert Schuch
Ensemble. A Powerful Experience - Rimsky-Korsakov and Messiaen from Ensemble Mirage, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Deeply Emotional - Alice McVeigh listens to music by the late John Joubert. 'William Boughton conducts with great sensitivity, and the orchestra excels.'
Ensemble. Roads of Genius - Mike Wheeler listens to Bohuslav Martinů's Fourth Symphony
Ensemble. Aptly Hallucinatory - Janáček's 'Katya Kabanová' from Opera North, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Classical music news. Obituary - Peter Hurford (1930-2019)
Classical music news. Obituary - Heinz Winbeck (1946-2019)
Vital Work - Margaret Fingerhut's UK piano recital tour raising awareness of the needs of refugees, recommended by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A Fresh Pair of Ears - Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov and Sibelius from Vasily Petrenko and the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Satisfyingly Mysterious - Mike Wheeler listens to Lyadov, Stravinsky and Rachmaninov from Derby Concert Orchestra
Ensemble. Rhythms and Algorithms - Mike Wheeler was at Sinfonia Viva's latest schools project
Profile. A Forgotten Composer in England - Richard Meszto writes about Hungarian-born Emanuel Moór
CD Spotlight. A Compelling New Reading - Anett Fodor is impressed by Daniel Harding and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra's recent recording of Mahler's Fifth Symphony. 'Daniel Harding awakens and keeps the listener's curiosity captive, demanding thorough attention for his compelling interpretation.'
CD Spotlight. Improvisatory Freedom - Gerald Fenech listens to pianist Myron Romanul. 'Romanul's playing brims with an expressive power that generates its own excitement and self-belief ...'
Ensemble. Imaginative Freshness - Mike Wheeler listens to Beethoven, Mozart and Rachmaninov from Sasha Grynyuk
Profile. Genuine Artistic Perspectives - George Colerick discusses the music of Sergei Prokofiev with reference to the Soviet authorities
CD Spotlight. Past and Present - Gerald Fenech finds music for trombone and piano worthy of serious investigation. 'Performances are wonderfully attractive, with a certain exquisite timbre and beautifully shaped nuances permeating each piece.'
Ensemble. A Roman Pietas - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Petrassi and Shostakovich in Rome
Ensemble. All About Collaboration - Music by Steve Reich impresses Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Two Fine Violinists - Stephen Francis Vasta listens to music by Erich Wolfgang Korngold. 'Even the Violin Concerto ends with a downward chordal scale that 'resolves' to a dissonance, "à la" Charles Ives!'
Ensemble. Sprightly, Polished and Gleaming - Mike Wheeler listens to Mozart, Malcolm Arnold and Lennox Berkeley from Alec Frank-Gemmill and Sinfonia Viva, conducted by Frank Zielhorst
Ensemble. Deceptively Undemonstrative - Mike Wheeler listens to Canadian/Romanian pianist Teo Gheorghiu
Ensemble. A Brand New 'Carmen' Ballet - Giuseppe Pennisi reports from the opening night at Teatro dell'Opera di Roma
Classical music news. Mahler Education - Joy Lisney conducts a special performance of Mahler's Ninth Symphony
CD Spotlight. Idiomatically Revealing - Oxana Shevchenko plays Stravinsky for solo piano, heard by Roderic Dunnett. '... finely and deftly played.'
CD Spotlight. Dazzling Symphonies - Symphonies by Ruth Gipps, recommended by Roderic Dunnett. 'It conveys as much energy and artistry and expressiveness today as it did the day it was written.'
Classical music news. Towards the Light - Helsinki Chamber Choir's new CD will be released on 1 March 2019
CD Spotlight. Extending the Repertoire - Anett Fodor listens to Hungarian viola player Vidor Nagy. 'The mellifluous sound, the doleful melody, as well as Vidor Nagy's sensitive performance convince the listener that both the artist and instrument are worthy of recognition.'
Ensemble. An Odd Couple? - Kurtág and Brahms in concert, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Extreme Staging - Giuseppe Pennisi reports from Palermo on the opening of Teatro Massimo's 2019 opera season
Ensemble. An Endurance Test - Rossini, Monti, J S Bach, Mozart, Handel, Vaughan Williams and Dave Maslanka from the Syzygy Quartet, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Collective Talent - Mike Wheeler marvels at The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain
CD Spotlight. A Deep Understanding - John McCabe's 'lost' Australian recording, commended by Geoff Pearce. 'The music is unfamiliar, but interesting, full of surprises and variety, and the fine piano playing is insightful and committed.'
(Features listed in grey are in our archive, and available to subscribers only.)