RECENT: Find out about composers from unusual places, including Gerard Schurmann, Giya Kancheli, Nazib Zhiganov and Nodar Gabunia, about singing in cars, and meet Jim Hutton from the RLPO and some of our regular contributors in this eighty-minute February 2021 video.
RECENT: Composers Daniel Schorno and John Dante Prevedini discuss creativity, innovation and re-invention with Maria Nockin, Mary Mogil, Giuseppe Pennisi and Roderic Dunnett in our hour-long April 2021 video.
RECENT: James Ross and Eric Fraad discuss Streaming, Downloads and CDs with Maria Nockin, Mary Mogil, David Arditti, Gerald Fenech, John Daleiden, John Dante Prevedini, Lucas Ball and Stephen Francis Vasta in our hour-long May 2021 video.
CD Spotlight. Innermost Tenderness — Gerald Fenech listens to arias by Johann Joseph Fux. 'Maria Ladurner is an inspired and impassioned advocate of Fux's music, and her supreme performances have a thrilling realism that brings out all the contrasting timbres of this fragile yet gravitas-filled music.'
CD Spotlight. The Roaring Twenties — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to the first complete recording of Reynaldo Hahn's 'Ô mon bel inconnu'. '... a period-piece that, musically, can be very much enjoyed today ...'
CD Spotlight. Truly Revelatory — Music by English composer Cipriani Potter, highly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Howard Griffiths and his BBC National Orchestra of Wales players deliver electrifying performances full of rhythmic vitality and lyrical warmth ...'
CD Spotlight. Dramatic Potency and Marvellous Clarity — Gerald Fenech listens to piano music by German-born Danish composer Friedrich Kuhlau. 'Marie-Luise Bodendorff is an inspired and enthusiastic interpreter of this rare but lovely repertoire ...'
CD Spotlight. An Exemplary Partnership — Geoff Pearce is impressed by Mozart Violin Sonatas transcribed and played by oboist Olivier Stankiewicz, accompanied by Jonathan Ware. '... the performances here are astounding.'
CD Spotlight. A Unique Orchestral Mastery — Music by Walter Braunfels, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Gregor Bühl ... marshalls his forces with full-blooded conviction, and his orchestra responds brilliantly to Braunfels' luscious musical language ...'
CD Spotlight. A Master of Improvisation — Music by Roland Dyens played by Anna Mnich and recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'The guitarist is clean in her execution, sympathetic in her musical treatment and her harmonics are flawless.'
CD Spotlight. Modernity and Sweeping Power — Beethoven's 'Eroica' Symphony on period instruments impresses Gerald Fenech. '... Beethoven's intended instrumental balances and effects are brought alive once more in revelatory fashion.'
CD Spotlight. The Perfect Musical Mixture — Gerald Fenech listens to music by Johann Rosenmüller. 'Gregor Meyer and his forces give disciplined yet highly laudable performances, and their commitment to the cause is spirited and vibrant.'
CD Spotlight. Technical Brilliance — James Willshire plays piano music by Cecil Coles and Gustav Holst, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'James Willshire is renowned for his virtuosity and intelligence of his keyboard mastery, and all this is on display in this recital.'
CD Spotlight. A Journey of Unending Delights — Music by Paul Wranitzky impresses Gerald Fenech. 'The Neumeyer Consort's performances display a mastery of Boismortier's language that is just astonishing ...'
CD Spotlight. A Prodigious Compositional Career — Gerald Fenech listens to music by French baroque composer Joseph Bodin de Boismortier. 'The Neumeyer Consort's performances display a mastery of Boismortier's language that is just astonishing ...'
CD Spotlight. A Dazzling Career and a Dissolute Life — Two versions of Alessandro Stradella's serenata 'La Circe', reviewed by Gerald Fenech. 'Estevan Velardi executes this rare programme with exceptional insight and skill ...'
CD Spotlight. Exciting and Superbly Executed — Franz Schreker's opera 'Der ferne Klang', highly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Sebastian Weigle conducts this stirring but difficult work with wonderful intuition, bringing out all the luscious orchestral beauty with disarming clarity.'
CD Spotlight. Different Worlds — Haydn symphonies, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'György Vashegyi ... conducts these absolutely sparkling pieces with formidable authority and unbridled zeal ... and his players respond with some utterly warm performances, brimming with bouncy wit and humour yet equally incisive drive.'
CD Spotlight. Recommended by Mozart — Georg Anton Benda's melodrama 'Medea', reviewed by Gerald Fenech. 'Katharina Thalbach is overwhelmingly effective as the narrator, while Marcus Bosch's conducting is intensely committed, capturing all the seething complexities of love, betrayal and revenge, grappling in Medea's heart and mind, with electrifying exuberance.'
CD Spotlight. Beautifully Crafted — Geoff Pearce listens to Lieder by Swiss composers Hans Schaeuble, Frank Martin, Peter Mieg, Othmar Schoeck and Arthur Honegger. '... one of the loveliest discs I have ever heard.'
CD Spotlight. One of Rameau's Greatest Works — The opera 'Dardanus' impresses Gerald Fenech. 'György Vashegyi paces his forces with meticulous mastery, and his thorough knowledge of the score enables him to bring to the listener all the felicitous nuances of this imaginative music.'
CD Spotlight. A Strange Beauty — Symphonies by Daniel Jones, heard by Geoff Pearce. 'The BBC Welsh Symphony Orchestra delivers fine performances, as does the direction of its conductor, Bryden Thomson.'
CD Spotlight. Natural Talents — Gerald Fenech listens to Easter cantatas by Baroque German composer Christoph Graupner. 'Christian Bonath and his team give these baroque choral gems the ideal exposure, and reveal them to be the masterpieces they truly are in performances of inspirational nobility and incomparable beauty.'
CD Spotlight. An Important Discovery — Georg Philipp Telemann's Markus-Passion 1759, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi. 'Hermann Max, a specialist not only of baroque but especially of Georg Philipp Telemann, conducts Das Kleine Konzert with rigor and flair as well as emphasis on the dramatic impact of the recitatives and on the moral content of the arias.'
CD Spotlight. Most Welcome — Gerald Fenech listens to French piano duets. 'Paul Lewis and Steven Osborne, two of Britain's foremost pianists, give matchless performances, and their virtuosic brilliance and unique sensitivity to the many nuances of these scores are an absolute joy to listen to.'
CD Spotlight. Performed at the Vauxhall Gardens — Symphonies by eighteenth century British composer John Abraham Fisher, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Michael Halász and his Czech team are in exuberant form and their pleasantly flowing performances bring out all the charm, wit and cheerfulness of this lovely music.'
CD Spotlight. Mascagni in a New Garb — Gerald Fenech recommends a new recording of Pietro Mascagni's 'Iris'. 'Krieger's exhilarating conducting draws from both his singers and players some truly sublime performances, full of unbridled enthusiasm.'
CD Spotlight. Absolutely Fantastic — Music by Schnittke for violin and piano, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'The performances are great all round, and this is a useful addition to anyone's collection.'