CENTRAL ENGLAND: Mike Wheeler's concert reviews from Nottingham and Derbyshire feature high profile artists on the UK circuit - often quite early on their tours.
SPONSORED: An Integral Part - Lindsey Wallis looks forward to the Canadian Music Centre's tribute concert to composer Roberta Stephen.
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Classical music news - March 2023 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month
Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney - Selling like hot cakes ... maybe, hopefully
Ensemble. Breath-taking Delicacy - Mike Wheeler is impressed with Grieg and Shostakovich from pianist Elisabeth Brauss, conductor Alpesh Chauhan and the Hallé Orchestra
Classical music news - January 2023 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month
CD Spotlight. Essentially a Romantic - Gerald Fenech listens to early recordings by Danish conductor John Frandsen. 'Frandsen's conducting has a pleasing flow that creates an aura of peace and serenity, and his flexible tempi and broad phrasing give the music that extra sparkle which is the difference between a good or great performance.'
Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney - Introduction
Ensemble. Shaped with Care - Mike Wheeler listens to Sibelius, Grieg and Dvořák from Derby Concert Orchestra and guest conductor Bob Chasey
Ensemble. Passionate Conducting - Daniel Harding concludes the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia's 2021-22 symphonic season in Rome, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi
Classical music news. Music Competitions - Here are details of various music competitions taking place during the coming months
CD Spotlight. A Marvellous Set - Geoff Pearce listens to the Sibelius symphonies, played by the Oslo Philharmonic and Klaus Mäkelä. 'The Oslo Philharmonic responds magnificently to the direction and vision of Klaus Mäkelä.'
Classical music news - December 2021 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world lost last month
CD Spotlight. Hugely Educational - Christiane Karg's new album, heard by Keith Bramich. '... great clarity and precision in Christiane Karg's voice and sensitive support from Gerold Huber ...'
CD Spotlight. Shattered Lives - Gerald Fenech recommends Fabrice Bollon's recording of César Franck's opera 'Hulda'. 'Sensational operatic discovery in an electrifying performance that sizzles with some superb singing and brilliant orchestral playing.'
CD Spotlight. Much to Appreciate - Gerald Fenech finds these rare Norwegian Opera Overtures well worth exploring. 'Ingar Bergby keeps things moving briskly, and in his knowledgeable hands the music sounds even more accessible than one expects it to be.'
Classical music news. Joint Commissions - Four organisations from different countries collaborate to commission new works from Quebec composer Samy Moussa
Classical music news - August 2021 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month
CD Spotlight. An Exquisite Compilation - A selection of popular orchestral music, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Spiritedly performed and superbly recorded ...'
CD Spotlight. Stravinsky's Breakthrough - Gerald Fenech listens to Diaghilev's commissions. '... absolutely enthralling, revelatory and consistently vibrant.'
CD Spotlight. The Composer-Pianist Reimagined - John Dante Prevedini listens to music by contemporary Norwegian composer-pianist Andreas Ihlebæk. '... a rich expressiveness underneath the veil of subtlety and self-restraint.'
Classical music news - November 2020 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month
Ensemble. Seemingly Effortless - Lise Davidsen and James Baillieu's Met Stars Live recital from Oslo, reviewed by Maria Nockin
CD Spotlight. Unfamiliar yet Totally Rewarding - Gerald Fenech listens to symphonies by the twentieth century Norwegian composer Eivind Groven. 'The Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra delivers performances that are convincing throughout, and Peter Szilvay's ardent attention to detail brings out all the hidden twists of these remarkable but unjustly neglected scores.'
Classical music news - Donatella Flick Conducting Competition - The deadline for the 2021 Donatella Flick Conducting Competition has been extended until 13 August 2020
Classical music news - June 2020 Obituaries - Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month
CD Spotlight. Soft-painted Colours - Gerald Fenech listens to music by Norwegian composer David Monrad Johansen. 'This is brilliantly performed Nordic music with warmth written all over it.'
CD Spotlight. Meaning and Identity - Gerald Fenech listens to Leonard Bernstein's first two symphonies. 'A wholly impressive issue, brilliantly performed and recorded ...'
CD Spotlight. Unique and Most Compelling - Concertos by Danish composer Bent Sørensen, heard by Eugene Takeuchi-Williams. '... in these three pieces, Sørensen is the consistent champion of the understatement.'
CD Spotlight. Immediately Engaging - Raphael Wallfisch plays cello concertos by Mieczysław Weinberg, recommended unreservedly by Geoff Pearce. 'This magnificent disc showcases the work of a composer who is still relatively under-represented in recording catalogues and on the concert platform.'
Ensemble. A Veritable Cat's Cradle - Mike Wheeler listens to Robert and Clara Schumann, Chopin, Grieg and Cheryl Frances-Hoad, played by British pianist Tom Poster
Ensemble. A Wide Expressive Range - Mike Wheeler listens to piano duets from Dina Duisen and Martin James Bartlett
Ensemble. Much to Enjoy - Christmas with the Sitwell Singers, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Nicely Shaped - Mike Wheeler listens to Duruflé and Ola Gjeilo from Derby Choral Union and its new musical director Paul Provost
Classical music news. The Great Composers - Five films to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Beethoven's birth, in cinemas from December 2019
Ensemble. Satisfyingly Unexpected - Mike Wheeler listens to Grieg, Clara Schumann, Kodály and Mozart from Frank Zielhorst and Sinfonia Viva
CD Spotlight. Impressive and Delightful - Geoff Pearce listens to Martin Setchell playing the Christchurch Town Hall Rieger organ in New Zealand. '... a wide range of organ music that I am sure will delight lovers of fine organ playing.'
Fun and Frolics - Mozart, Beethoven, Grieg and Mahler from Benjamin Grosvenor, the Hallé Orchestra and Gergely Madaras, heard by Mike Wheeler
Classical music news. Obituary - Alfred Janson (1937-2019)
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
Profile. Prodigious appetite for repertoire - Ron Bierman talks to coloratura soprano Alisa Jordheim
Ensemble. Music in the Pontifical Basilicas - Giuseppe Pennisi attends the inaugural concert of The Rome International Festival of Sacred Music and Art
CD Spotlight. Deep Emotions - Keyboard music by J S Bach impresses Anett Fodor. 'Simone Leitão plays with a sharply honed, flawless technique and her sense of style is highly refined.'
CD Spotlight. Unforced Musicality - The three big Tchaikovsky ballets, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. 'Järvi always maintains the right lightness ...'
CD Spotlight. A Magnificent Project - Wind band music by Percy Grainger impresses Paul Sarcich. '... a band of obviously first-rate musicians, informed conducting from Engeset, and excellent recording ...'
Ensemble. Rock-solid Technique - Victoria, Gesualdo, Schütz, J S Bach, Poulenc and Knut Nystedt from cellist Deirdre Bencsik and the Derwent Singers impresses Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Brilliantly Performed - Music by Halvorsen, Nielsen and Svendsen impresses Gerald Fenech. 'Henning Kraggerud's technical brilliance lends a balanced fluidity to all three works, and each is allowed to betray all the enterprising orchestral colours hidden within each score.'
CD Spotlight. Consistently Vibrant - Prokofiev's Symphonies Nos 4 and 7, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Andrew Litton and his Bergen ensemble deliver some forceful performances full of exciting vigour ...'
CD Spotlight. Beautifully Done - Mozart violin concerti, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... Kraggerud is most ably supported by the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra ...'
CD Spotlight. Sure to Please - John McCabe plays Edvard Grieg, warmly recommended by Ron Bierman. 'McCabe gets to the heart of these relatively unfamiliar pieces ...'
CD Spotlight. Transparent Sincerity - Music by Leif Solberg, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Unbridled and vibrantly committed performances ...'
CD Spotlight. Virtuosic in Style - Piano music by Adolf Jensen, enjoyed by Geoff Pearce. '... romantic, strongly melodic and individualistic, but never recorded before ...'
CD Spotlight. Brassy Fireworks - Music by John Pickard, heard by Andrew Schartmann. '... a thrilling listening experience.'
CD Spotlight. Fascinating Work - Grieg and Finnissy for piano quintet, heard by Robert Anderson. '... the whole disc is an unexpected serendipity.'
CD Spotlight. Cologne Broadcasts - Edvard Grieg's symphonic music, heard by Howard Smith. '... spoilt for choice.'
CD Spotlight. Musical Spirit - Berlioz overtures, heard by Howard Smith. '... commendable intuition and skillfulness ...'
Ensemble. Fatal Obsession - Wagner's 'Flying Dutchman' at Los Angeles Opera, experienced by Maria Nockin
CD Spotlight. Tip Top Music - Tine Thing Helseth and Kathryn Stott, heard by Howard Smith. 'Ever full of daring ...'
Beautifully Judged - Mike Wheeler listens to Finnish pianist Juho Pohjonen
CD Spotlight. Rural Delight - Edvard Grieg's Lyric Pieces, heard by Robert Anderson. '... Rubinstein clearly relishes the range of opportunities provided ...'
Ensemble. Silvery Tones - Maria Nockin was at the opening concert of Phoenix Chorale's 2012-13 season
CD Spotlight. Aching Beauty - Messiaen's 'Turangalîla-Symphonie', heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. '... vibrant, almost hesitant strings ...'
CD Spotlight. Quirkily Playful - Vilde Frang plays Tchaikovsky and Nielsen, heard by Robert Anderson. '... exhilarating to the highest degree.'
Ensemble. Very Moving - A recital by Janine Jansen and Itamar Golan, heard by Bill Newman
Ensemble. Inside the Music - Mike Wheeler listens to the Czech National Symphony Orchestra
New Year Blues - A roundup of recent London concerts by Bill Newman
CD Spotlight. Elegaic Melancholy - A new recording from Jan Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble, exceeds Howard Smith's highest expectations. '... beyond criticism ...'
An Eloquent Devotee - Ronald Stevenson's writings on Grainger, read by Robert Anderson
Ensemble. A Blistering Whirlwind - More from the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. An Apt Mix - Alena Baeva, Terje Mikkelsen and The Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra of Moscow Radio, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. A World-class Orchestra - Mike Wheeler listens to the Bergen Philharmonic
CD Spotlight. Highly Challenging - Music for unaccompanied violin, heard by Howard Smith. '... searching performance ...'
Ensemble. Deeply Felt - Verdi's 'Don Carlo' at Covent Garden, reviewed by Robert Hugill
CD Spotlight. Sacrificing the 'unmodern' - Music by Julius Röntgen and Per Nørgård, heard by George Balcombe. 'How could any audience resist ... ?'
DVD Spotlight. Extreme Individuality - A film about Delius, seen by Paul Sarcich. '... a commendable breadth.'
Ensemble. Especially Successful - Gillian Wills reports from the Australian Fesival of Chamber Music
Ensemble. Suite Brolga - Music of David Salisbury at the 2009 Australian Festival of Chamber Music, reported by Malcolm Tattersall
Ensemble. Thought-provoking - Music by Harle and Maxwell Davies, heard by Malcolm Miller
Ensemble. Exceptional Gifts - Lawrence Budmen reports from the 2009 Miami International Piano Festival
Ensemble. Elegance and Authority - Leila Josefowicz and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in Nottingham, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. A Mixed Bag - Boston String Quartet's 'Xibus', reviewed by Howard Smith. 'What all this signifies is not at all clear.'
Power and Delicacy - Beate Toyka plays Grieg's piano concerto, heard by Mike Wheeler
Record Box. Song of Bergen - Music by Georg von Bertouch and from the Mestmacher Manuscript, enjoyed by Patric Standford
CD Spotlight. An Interesting Mix - Sacred treasures, enjoyed by Robert Hugill. '... certainly intoxicating.'
Ensemble. Honed and practised - Jan Garbarek in Cardiff, enjoyed by Rex Harley
CD Spotlight. Idiomatic rightness - An award-winning Grieg disc, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... an enchanting lightness of touch ...'
CD Spotlight. Impassioned performance - Slåttebrekk plays Schumann, reviewed by John Bell Young. '... huge-hearted, compelling and structurally intelligible ...'
CD Spotlight. Precocious talent - The music of Fred Jonny Berg, reviewed by Patric Standford. '... Berg will probably be an outrageous success!'
Ensemble. Emotional sound - Tess Crebbin and Sissy von Kotzebue review a Ben Heppner recital in Munich
Ensemble. Gypsy fire - Lawrence Budmen is impressed by Ukrainian violinist Vadim Gluzman
Ensemble. Drawing you in - The Tord Gustavsen Trio's first ever UK performance, appreciated by Rex Harley
Utopian ideals - Gordon Rumson reads Paul W Heimel's 'Oleana - The Ole Bull Colony'
CD Spotlight. Kipnis' Cocktails - Dances by Dvorák, Brahms and Grieg, reviewed by Jennifer Paull. 'This particular mosaic of magical components is just right!'
Site seeing at the Mandolin Café - with Keith Bramich
Record box - fiddling. Norwegian composer Geirr Tveitt heard by Basil Ramsey
Planning your collection - Bartok and Janacek -
Berlin Festival Diary - Five weeks condensed into three, with Bill Newman, including 'Light shining through' - an interview with Yaara Tal
Planning your collection - Anne Kaasa -