VIDEO PODCAST: Slava Ukraini! - recorded on 24 February 2022, the day the world woke up to the news that Vladimir Putin's Russian forces had invaded Ukraine. A fifty minute video which also features Caitríona O'Leary and Eric Fraad discussing their new film Island of Saints, and pays tribute to Joseph Horovitz, Malcolm Troup and Maria Nockin.
Südwestrundfunk (SWR) is South west Germany's public broadcasting corporation, serving Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate. It was created on 1 October 1998, formed from the merger of Stuttgart's Süddeutscher Rundfunk and Baden-Baden's Südwestfunk.
The SWR Music record label is a subsidiary of SWR Media Services GmbH.
CD Spotlight. A Universal Happy Ending - Gerald Fenech reviews a new recording of Franz Ignaz Beck's opera 'L'isle déserte'. 'Michael Schneider and his La Stagione Frankfurt players give a pleasant and sprightly performance, but attention to detail is always of paramount importance.'
CD Spotlight. Fresh Appraisals - Roger Norrington's interpretations of Bruckner symphonies, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Commendable, if somewhat unorthodox.'
CD Spotlight. Beyond Memorable - Hans Rosbaud conducts Gustav Mahler symphonies, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Rosbaud ... lays out the whole range of Mahler's passion with a fiery sense of musicality.'
CD Spotlight. A Double Rescue - Meyerbeer's little-known opera 'Romilda e Costanza', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi. '... a rescue opera which is worth saving from oblivion.'
CD Spotlight. An Integral Part of Christmas - Carols from the SWR Vokal Ensemble, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... beautifully shaped and vocally refined and the voices come across clear and resonant.'
CD Spotlight. Cheerfulness, Humour and Passion - Pietari Inkinen conducts Dvořák's Symphony No 6, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'This fine issue also includes three overtures ...'
CD Spotlight. Romantic Concertos - Geoff Pearce listens to Dohnányi's two piano concertos. 'Sofja Gülbadamova is a superb pianist who obviously identifies with this composer and has the crispness, accuracy and flair to bring off these two works.'
CD Spotlight. Extraordinarily Gifted - Hans Rosbaud conducts Beethoven, and Gerald Fenech is impressed. 'These exceptional recordings, taped between 1953 and 1962, reveal a conductor of exceptional insight and unbounded energy, and these interpretations can be safely considered as among the very best of their time.'
CD Spotlight. Very Palatable - Geoff Pearce listens to orchestral music by Albéric Magnard. 'The quality of the performances by Philharmonisches Orchester Freiburg and conductor Fabrice Bollon is exemplary and complimentary to the work of this minor master.'
CD Spotlight. Audacious Symphonic Language - Prokofiev's Symphonies Nos 3 and 6 played by the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Pietari Inkinen and his German ensemble are on top form and both symphonies receive compelling interpretations full of cohesive and dynamic playing.'
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.'
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.'
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.'
CD Spotlight. Truly Magical - Ravel at his very best, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'The orchestral sound is sumptuous and detailed, and the solo vocalists are all first class.'
CD Spotlight. The Bad Boy of Music? - Orchestral music by George Antheil, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Karl-Heinz Steffens and his German troops are passionate advocates of Antheil's cause, and performances are full of engaging expressiveness and technical finesse.'
CD Spotlight. Assertive Performances - 'Symphonia Domestica' and 'Metamorphosen', excite Gerald Fenech. '... full of charismatic flair and detailed, luscious sound that give these challenging pieces a glow of brilliance.'