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Classical Music Daily — all articles published in 2021

 

Classical music news. Upgrading to the Visual — Classical Music Daily's January 2021 Newsletter has just been published in a new video podcast format

Ensemble. A Fun-loving Tradition — New York Metropolitan Opera's New Year's Eve Gala Concert, reviewed by Maria Nockin

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.'

Ensemble. Melody and Mayhem — The English Symphony Orchestra's New Year's Eve offering, heard by Alice McVeigh

CD Spotlight. Passionately Colourful Orchestration — Gerald Fenech listens to music by Catalan composer Joan Manén. 'Ana María Valderrama's rendition of the Concerto is technically superb, and there's a purity in her tone that you don't experience every day. Darrell Ang gives sympathetic support throughout.'

Classical music news - January 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

CD Spotlight. An Individualistic Voice — Music by French composer Florent Schmitt, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'The orchestra and soloists are very fine, and the atmospheric nature of the music is beautifully captured.'

Salzburg 2021 — Giuseppe Pennisi looks forward to the Salzburg Summer Festival which has Peace as its theme

CD Spotlight. The Sweetness of Life — Music by French baroque composer Michel-Richard de Lalande, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi. 'The instrumental ensemble, playing period instruments or a violin manufactured in 2011 but after period specifications, is excellent.'

Classical music news. Obituary — John Georgiadis (1939-2021)

Classical music news - Dreams of a New Day — Cedille Records announces new releases for 2021

Classical music news. Rattle to Munich — Simon Rattle is appointed Chief Conductor of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and extends with the London Symphony Orchestra

CD Spotlight. Great Entertainment — SOMM Recordings' second volume of film music, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Iain Sutherland and his Promenade players display no want of energy and each track is tackled with effervescence and enthusiasm, making the music sound even more exciting than it was thought to be.'

CD Spotlight. Tristan, Isolde and God Almighty — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Olivier Messiaen's Turangalîla Symphony. 'On this rendering, British conductor Alexander Soddy handles very well the Nationaltheater Orchester of Mannheim, where he is general director of music, and the two soloists, Tamara Stefanovich at the piano and Thomas Bloch at the Ondes Martinot.'

CD Spotlight. Fresh and Imaginative — Gerald Fenech is impressed by John Rutter's sacred music, arranged by Luc Vertommen for brass band. 'Stirringly performed and conducted, this is music whose melodies and harmonies fit perfectly with the sound of a brass band ...'

Ensemble. Mariotti and The Ninth — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews Michele Mariotti's January 2021 Beethoven performance in Parma

CD Spotlight. An Absolutely Stunning Experience — Gerald Fenech is moved by organ transcriptions of symphonic music by Anton Bruckner. 'Memorable performances, high-tech sonics and informative annotations complete this superb and innovative first instalment that sets my imagination alight.'

CD Spotlight. Strauss from the Antipodes — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews rarely-heard François Couperin orchestral transcriptions by Richard Strauss. '... good rendering by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra under Jun Märkl ...'

Classical music news. Jim Hutton — RLPO violinist celebrates forty years with the orchestra

Classical music news. Obituary — Elijah Moshinsky (1946-2021)

CD Spotlight. A Superb Set — The complete symphonies of Heitor Villa-Lobos, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Octogenarian Brazilian conductor Isaac Karabtchevsky's performances are fine and show no lack of passion or vigour.'

On Fischer-Dieskau's Schubert — Patrick Maxwell investigates the German baritone's legacy

CD Spotlight. Metamorphosis of a Georgian Soul — John Dante Prevedini reviews essential recordings of the Giya Kancheli symphonies. '... a unique symphonic expression of the Georgian experience ...'

Profile. A Philological Discovery — Giuseppe Pennisi writes about the seventeenth century Italian architect and global musician Carlo Rainaldi

Ensemble. Smooth High Notes and Powerful Drama — Piotr Beczała and Sondra Radvanovsky's Met Stars Live recital from Wuppertal, recommended by Maria Nockin

Ensemble. Arduous and Contrasting Passion — Bellini's 'I Puritani' at Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, recommended by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. Charming and Evocative — Geoff Pearce listens to music by Alexander Rahbari. 'The performances by all involved are very fine, and I hope that this will serve to open the ears, minds and heart to music that perhaps, without this fine composer, most of us would never get to hear.'

Ensemble. Twilight of Dreams — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences a pastiche for our times at the opening of Teatro Massimo di Palermo's 2021 season

Classical music news. In Memoriam Krzysztof Penderecki — Polish Cultural Institute New York presents a worldwide programme honouring the life and legacy of the Polish composer

CD Spotlight. Astounding Work — A second volume of orchestral music by Austrian composer Hans Rott, heard by Geoff Pearce. '... performed with passion and understanding, and the quality of the recording matches this. Bravo.'

Classical music news. New Conducting Competition — Only Stage Management Company in cooperation with Classics Management Budapest announces the first edition of the Only Stage International Conducting Competition

Classical music news. Singing in Cars? — Classical Music Daily's February 2021 Newsletter has just been published as a video podcast

Ensemble. Bohème dated 1896 — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews Puccini, broadcast from Teatro Regio Torino in Italy

Classical music news. Barlow Endowment — Applications are open for the Barlow Prize, Barlow General Commission and Barlow Latter-day Saints Commission

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.'

Classical music news. Ching-Lien Wu — The Chorus Master of Dutch National Opera has been appointed Chef des choeurs at Opéra National de Paris

Ensemble. Fit for Streaming? — Giuseppe Pennisi investigates various current and recent opera productions

Ensemble. An Opera for Voices — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews Vincenzo Bellini's rarely-staged 'Il Pirata'

CD Spotlight. An Unforgettable Recital — Ona Jarmalavičiūtė listens to Evgeny Kissin's Chopin recital from the 1985 December Nights Music Festival. 'From the very beginning of his career at the top of his game, Evgeny Kissin presents a performance that is, simply put, wild.'

Ensemble. Appreciation of Nature — Maria Nockin reviews a 'Met Stars' online concert from the Spanish Riding School in Vienna, featuring Anna Netrebko, Elena Maximova and Pavel Nebolsin

CD Spotlight. Engrossingly Moving — Works for clarinet and orchestra by Nielsen, Copland and MacMillan, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'A challenging programme, superbly presented and recorded.'

Classical music news. Hans van Manen Variations — Dutch National Ballet livestreams six ballets from the Dutch master of dance, with musical accompaniment by the Dutch Ballet Orchestra

Classical music news - February 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

CD Spotlight. Living in the Moment — Paul Sarcich explores the music of Pēteris Vasks. '... wonderfully luminous recordings of luminous music.'

CD Spotlight. Fresh and Startlingly Immediate — Forgotten recordings from George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra, unreservedly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... the music is dispatched with energetic vigour, which was the hallmark of all Szell's performances.'

Ensemble. A Human Tragedy — HD streaming of the opening night at the new Staatsoper Unter den Linden production in Berlin of Janáček's 'Jenůfa' impresses Giuseppe Pennisi

Classical music news. Peter Forbes — A recently retired medical doctor launches Forbes International Artist Management to help a new generation of classical musicians

CD Spotlight. On the March — Saint-Saëns wind music, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. '... a truly glorious Saint-Saëns anthology wrapped in a different soundscape ...'

CD Spotlight. In Grand Style — Ballet music by Tcherepnin, enjoyed by Geoff Pearce. 'The Moscow Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Henry Shek, performs this music ... with all the passion and commitment such a score requires.'

CD Spotlight. The Para-Liturgical Art of Tchaikovsky — Ona Jarmalavičiūtė listens to the Latvian Radio Choir. '... the score's full range is captured sharply and sensitively, bringing out the true colors as well as the pure and attractive sound of choral liturgical music.'

Ensemble. Mixed Feelings — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews the new Opéra de Paris production of 'Aida'

CD Spotlight. Enigmatic yet Fascinating — Music by Rued Langgaard for violin and piano, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'The conclusion of a visionary cycle that is worthy of serious attention.'

Ensemble. Lolita in Jerusalem — Elena Stikhina in Teatro alla Scala's new production of 'Salome' by Richard Strauss impresses Giuseppe Pennisi

Classical music news - Steven Gerber — The English Symphony Orchestra presents a Steven Gerber portrait concert

CD Spotlight. An Absolute Delight — Volume three of Charles Koechlin's 'Les Chants de Nectaire' impresses Geoff Pearce. '... Nicola Woodward's playing is sumptuous, insightful and virtuosic when it needs to be, without ever being flashy.'

CD Spotlight. Awesome Stuff — Gerald Fenech is impressed by Ilya Gringolts' performances of three violin concertos by Pietro Locatelli. 'Ilya Gringolts' playing is phenomenally spellbinding, and his scintillating virtuosity and flawless execution are absolute joys and wholly worthy of constant admiration.'

A Miracle in New York — Piano Lessons in the Time of Covid (pace, Gabriel García Márquez), by Gloria DeVidas Kirchheimer

CD Spotlight. The Dead in the Square — Allan Pettersson's Symphony No 12, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Christian Lindberg gives a colossal interpretation of this difficult score, where everybody involved is wholly engrossed in Pettersson's unique creation.'

New Releases — Keith Bramich describes some changes this magazine is making to its reviewing process, and provides a snapshot of information provided by record labels, promoters and individual artists over the last month

Classical music news. Hang in there together — Classical Music Daily's March 2021 Newsletter has just been published as a video podcast

Ensemble. A Fast Rising Career — Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva's Met Stars recital with pianist Julien Quentin, experienced by Maria Nockin

Ensemble. A Revolutionary 'Ernani' in Palermo — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on a production modified for TV and streaming

CD Spotlight. Unearthing Lost Cornerstones — John Dante Prevedini listens to music by seventeenth century composer Balthasar Erben. '... the disk itself becomes a curatorial introduction to the composer's entire life and work. The Coviello label evidently understands the weight of this responsibility very well ...'

CD Spotlight. Exquisitely Written — Flute music for Louis XIV's Court, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'This is music full of gentle sensitivity and graceful intimacy, wonderfully performed and recorded, and a veritable treasure trove from the height of the French baroque era.'

CD Spotlight. Saying Goodbye — Music in response to Debussy's early death, reviewed by Geoff Pearce. 'The performances are great all round, and this is a useful addition to anyone's collection.'

CD Spotlight. Benjamin Britten and James Joyce — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to two sets of English folk and other songs. '... very good listening ...'

CD Spotlight. Continuous Excitement — Keyboard concertos by Franz Joseph Haydn, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Mélodie Zhao's interpretations are full of warmth and colour, and her phrasing, even in the quicker passages, is consistently arresting.'

CD Spotlight. An Enchanting, Levitating Musical Experience — Choral music by Arvo Pärt, sung by Vilnius Municipal Choir Jauna Muzika and reviewed by Ona Jarmalavičiūtė. '... performed beautifully.'

Classical music news. Buxton Festival — The Buxton International Festival (8-25 July 2021) announces its headline events

Classical music news. The Schoenberg Effect — The Berlin-based Notos Quartett's second album, devoted to Brahms, will be released on Sony Classical this month

Ensemble. A Half-Successful Experiment — Teatro Comunale di Bologna's new production of Cilea's 'Adriana Lecouvreur', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. Lusciously Fragile — Music by Ottorino Respighi, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Davide Alogna performs the Concerto with unbridled dexterity ...'

Classical music news - March 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

CD Spotlight. Stylistic Contrasts — Trumpet concertos by Alexander Arutiunian, Vladimir Peskin and Alfred Desenclos, heard by Paul Sarcich. '... this is a fine calling card for Selina Ott, who is one of those young players who will be very interesting to watch mature.'

Ensemble. Change of Perspective — Mike Wheeler reviews Sinfonia Viva's streamed performance from Chatsworth House in Derbyshire, UK

Ensemble. A Higher Synthesis — Adam J Sacks marks the re-convening of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra

Classical music news - Occurrence, Concurrence and Recurrence — A recent CD from the Iceland Symphony Orchestra has been published and recorded by Sono Luminus

CD Spotlight. Miniature Gems — Gerald Fenech listens to music by two neglected Italian Baroque composers - Alessandro Stradella and Giovanni Lorenzo Gregori. '... precise yet stylish playing ...'

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.'

Ensemble. Half and Half — Giuseppe Pennisi is not entirely convinced by Teatro San Carlo di Napoli's new production of Gioacchino Rossini's 'Il Turco in Italia'

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.'

Classical music news - Vienna Deadline — There are a few more days to apply for the 2021 Vienna International Music Competition

Ensemble. Colourful and Inventive — A streamed performance of a wind arrangement of 'Pictures From an Exhibition' from Derby's Joseph Wright Gallery, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

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.'

Ensemble. Elegant and Innovative — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences Teatro dell'Opera di Roma's Homage to Stravinsky

Ensemble. Questionable Stage Direction — Giuseppe Pennisi reviews Riccardo Muti's 'Così fan tutte' at Teatro Regio di Torino

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.'

Ensemble. Deadly Sins — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on a Weill/Brecht double bill from La Scala Milan

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.'

Classical music news. Creativity, Innovation and Re-invention — Classical Music Daily's April 2021 Newsletter has just been published as a video podcast

A Delius Cookbook — Mike Wheeler reports on unusual rumours from Grez-sur-Loing in France

Classical music news. Obituary — Jane Manning (1938-2021)

Classical music news. Obituary — Simon Bainbridge (1952-2021)

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.'

Ensemble. Easter Concerts — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences two recent performances broadcast on Italian TV

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.'

Ensemble. Cancel Culture and a Cryptic Message — Adam J Sacks listens to the Hong Kong Sinfonietta

CD Spotlight. High Romanticism — Paul Sarcich discovers the music of Robert Kahn. 'Ensemble Émigré have done fine service to Kahn ...'

Profile. Donald Nally — Ona Jarmalavičiūtė talks to American choral conductor Donald Nally, director of The Crossing

Ensemble. Enthralling Sound Colours — Malcolm Miller listens to young violinist Michael Foyle's recital of Beethoven, Brahms and Kreisler in London

Ensemble. A Call from On High — Mike Wheeler listens to the Sinfonia Viva Brass Quintet

Ensemble. In the Easter Egg — Giuseppe Pennisi takes a critical look at two April 2021 performances of Verdi's 'La Traviata'

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. 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. 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. A Jewel Box of Opera Rarities — Giuseppe Pennisi explores a CD set marking the Orfeo International label's first forty years. '... at least two masterpieces emerge ...'

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. The Voice of Nature — John Dante Prevedini listens to music by contemporary Latvian composer Santa Ratniece. '... the intelligence of the earth itself ...'

A Thriller about a Score — Giuseppe Pennisi explores a new critical edition of Palestrina's 'Missa Papae Marcelli'

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.'

Classical music news - April 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

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. A Lovely Gesture — Stephen Francis Vasta listens to Latvian conductor Mariss Jansons' last concert. 'The home listener, even without visual evidence, can sense that all was not well.'

Ensemble. Pelléas in the Waters — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences a new Italian production of Debussy's opera via TV

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 ...'

Classical music news. Obituary — Christa Ludwig (1928-2021)

Ensemble. Rollicking Comedy — Maria Nockin reports from San Diego Opera's drive-in performances of Rossini's 'The Barber of Seville'

Ensemble. The Right Touch — Gaetano Donizetti's 'The Elixir of Love', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. History of an Ancient Town — Music by Paul Hindemith, heard by Geoff Pearce. 'This excellent disc has strong performances by orchestra, chorus and vocal soloists.'

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 ...'

Classical music news. Streaming, Downloads and CDs — Classical Music Daily's May 2021 Newsletter has just been published as a video podcast

Ensemble. Figaro via Laugh-in — Ron Bierman reviews San Diego Opera's parking-lot production of Rossini's 'The Barber of Seville'

Ensemble. Teatro dell'Opera di Roma Re-opens — Giuseppe Pennisi was in a box for the opening night

CD Spotlight. Highly Characterful and Dynamic — Lucas Ball listens to Beethoven from Igor Levit and Xiaohan Wang. '... most of what this CD has to offer is top notch ...'

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. Violin Concertos with Oriental Flavors — Ona Jarmalavičiūtė listens to music by Nai-Chung Kuan and Joel Hoffman. '... a new musical experience ...'

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.'

Ensemble. Parsifal's Jail — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on Richard Wagner's 'Parsifal', streamed from Vienna State Opera

CD Spotlight. A True Rarity — Adolphe Adam's ballet 'La filleule des fées', heard by Gerald Fenech. '... brilliant orchestration, some knock-out tunes and an abundance of rhythmic energy.'

Ensemble. A Conductor's Opera — Giuseppe Pennisi enjoys a streamed/televised production of Verdi's 'Luisa Miller' from Teatro dell'Opera di Roma

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.'

Ensemble. A Quartet of Jubilation — Vocal music by Wagner and Richard Strauss, streamed from Germany and enjoyed by Maria Nockin

Ensemble. A Fitting Environmentalist Update — Adam J Sacks listens to Prokofiev in Hong Kong

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. 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 ...'

Classical music news. Obituary — Ester Mägi (1922-2021)

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. 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 ...'

Ensemble. Robert, Clara and the Others — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on an Accademia Filarmonica Romana concert in Rome

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. 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. 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. Delightful and Colourful — Geoff Pearce recommends a new Chandos recording of music by Henri Dutilleux. 'This music will delight all who hear it ...'

Defining Our Field — John Dante Prevedini asks what is 'classical music' to us, why are we involved and what can we learn from our differences?

Ensemble. Three Divas — Maria Nockin reviews a streamed recital from Versailles, given by Ailyn Pérez, Nadine Sierra, Isabel Leonard, Vlad Iftinca and Pablo Sáinz-Villegas

Ensemble. A Ukrainian Star in Rome — Oksana Lyniv makes her Rome debut, experienced by Giuseppe Pennisi

Classical music news - May 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Classical music news. Petrichor Competition and Save Lev's Violin — The submission deadline for a new international music competition will pass in a few days' time, and money is being raised to restore a precious violin

CD Spotlight. A Kiss from the Queen — Johann Strauss II's only opera, 'Ritter Pásmán', heard by Gerald Fenech. '... vibrantly performed by the Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra and finely conducted by Alfred Walter.'

CD Spotlight. Challenging Music — Erwin Schulhoff's only opera, 'Flammen', reviewed by Gerald Fenech. 'The performance is exhilarating and the recording sumptuous.'

CD Spotlight. Truly Exciting — Music by Alexander von Zemlinsky and Franz Schreker, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Petrenko has this music in his blood, and the performances have a sweep and power that keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end.'

Classical music news. Defining Our Field — Classical Music Daily's June 2021 Newsletter is a panel discussion led by John Dante Prevedini, and has just been published as a video podcast

Ensemble. Chaos Instead of Music? — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Wagner and Shostakovich in a triumphant concert by Alejo Pérez and the Teatro dell'Opera di Roma Orchestra

CD Spotlight. An Invaluable Collection — Symphonies by Marcel Poot, heard by Geoff Pearce. '... generally the playing and sound is very good.'

CD Spotlight. Rachmaninov's 'Choral Symphony' — Stephen Francis Vasta is impressed by Dmitrij Kitajenko's recordings of Rachmaninov and Taneyev. '... a colourful, engaged reading ...'

CD Spotlight. Truly Breathtaking Music — Willem Jeths' Requiem, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'Kelly God is phenomenal and James Gaffigan's direction of the very fine forces is inspired.'

Classical music news. Obituary — Alexander Maykapar (1946-2021)

CD Spotlight. A Bridge between Musical Cultures — Music by Lukas Ligeti, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi. 'If you like electronic music and African (even archaic) music, this CD is your perfect cup of tea.'

CD Spotlight. Intensely Personal and Complex — Gerald Fenech listens to Mahler's Seventh Symphony on a recording from a brand new label. 'Kirill Petrenko keeps the music flowing with grace and conviction ...'

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.'

Ensemble. Three Days in Ravenna — Giuseppe Pennisi samples Northern Italy's high profile and wide-ranging arts festival

Profile. Paul Zicheng Fu: A Life in Music — Gordon Andrew R investigates a Chinese-born composer who has settled in Canada

Ensemble. Time to Become More Widely Known — Keith Bramich listens to orchestral and chamber music by Adrian Williams

CD Spotlight. A Monumental Composition — Bruckner's first symphony transcribed for organ, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... towering performances ...'

CD Spotlight. Transcendental Studies — The music of English composer Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji from an Italian perspective, by Giuseppe Pennisi. 'On the two CDs, Fredrik Ullén demonstrates enthusiasm for Sorabji as well as high technical skills.'

CD Spotlight. Artistic Heritage — Music by Henry Purcell and John Taverner, unreservedly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... the singing and playing are consistently warm and passionate ...'

Ensemble. Down with the Piano Lid — Mike Wheeler listens to Ivan Hovorun

Ensemble. Black and White — Verdi's 'Il trovatore' from Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi

Aix and Pains — Giuseppe Pennisi previews the 2021 edition of the Aix-en-Provence Festival

CD Spotlight. A Strong Partnership — Riviera Lazeri and David Boldrini play Martinů Cello Sonatas, heard by Geoff Pearce. '... the performances on this disc are truly very admirable.'

CD Spotlight. Extremely Rare — 'Mademoiselle de Belle-Isle' by Spyridon Samaras, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Performances are excellent ...'

CD Spotlight. Heartfelt Pathos — Juan Bautista Cansino's Stabat Mater, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... serenity and resignation beyond comprehension.'

CD Spotlight. Magical Equilibrium — Patrick Maxwell listens to Mozart Violin Sonatas played by Oscar Shumsky and Leopold Mittman. '... a striking hold over tone and articulation ...'

Ensemble. Star Wars — Giuseppe Pennisi recommends listening to but not watching Maggio Musicale Fiorentino's production of Verdi's 'La forza del destino'

Classical music news. July 2021 New Releases — A selection of new recordings

Ensemble. Seven Siblings — Mike Wheeler listens to performances by members of the Kanneh-Mason family

CD Spotlight. Flowing Melodies — Romantic music for piano and orchestra by Jerzy Gablenz and Ignacy Jan Paderewski, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... full of bouncy energy, exuberant flair and spectacular pianism ...'

CD Spotlight. Beautifully Crafted — Music by Dutch composer Hendrik Andriessen, recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... absolutely inspirational ...'

Ensemble. Fresh and Appealing — Mike Wheeler listens to the Françaix Wind Trio

Ensemble. When I'm Sixty-Four — Giuseppe Pennisi visits the Spoleto Festival

CD Spotlight. Many Hidden Nuances — Monteverdi organ works, reviewed by Gerald Fenech. 'Kriju Koetsveld is a keen advocate of this repertoire ...'

Classical music news - Newsletter plus June Obituaries — Classical Music Daily's July 2021 Newsletter, has just been published, along with a summary of musicians the classical music world lost last month

Classical music news. Obituary — Louis Andriessen (1939-2021)

Ensemble. Catching Up — Giuseppe Pennisi attends the final two concerts of the Musica d'Amare Festival in Rome

CD Spotlight. Stravinsky's Breakthrough — Gerald Fenech listens to Diaghilev's commissions. '... absolutely enthralling, revelatory and consistently vibrant.'

CD Spotlight. Hugely Influential — Music by Richard Addinsell, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... absolutely enthralling, revelatory and consistently vibrant.'

CD Spotlight. What to do with Bach? — Patrick Maxwell listens to the 'Goldberg Variations' on the accordion. 'Telari plays with an alluring sensitivity ...'

CD Spotlight. An Inspiring Testament — Hungarian music played by the Offenburg String Trio, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Sensitive and engrossingly passionate performances ...'

Ensemble. The Seven Year Itch — Giuseppe Pennisi visits the Chigiana International Festival and Summer Academy

Ensemble. Everything you know is wrong! — Mike Wheeler listens to The Sixteen in Derby

Ensemble. A Long Love Affair — Giuseppe Pennisi attends the Stravinsky anniversary celebrations in Rome

Classical music news - Female Grief, Sacrifice and Heroism — Announcing the release of 'iGIRL', a new electronic opera by Roger Doyle with libretto by Marina Carr

CD Spotlight. A Prolific Composer — Orchestral music by Czech composer Paul Wranitzky, warmly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Sensitive and engrossingly passionate performances ...'

CD Spotlight. The Sound Frontier — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music for orchestra and electronics by Nicola Sani. '... of undoubted interest to all those who explore the new frontiers of sound.'

Ensemble. A Magical Production — Mike Wheeler reports on the Buxton Festival's first ever musical - Stephen Sondheim's 'A Little Night Music'

Ensemble. Virtuoso Exuberance — Mike Wheeler listens to the Pelléas Ensemble at the Buxton Festival

CD Spotlight. A Very Special CD — Band music by John Philip Sousa, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Sensitive and engrossingly passionate performances ...'

Ensemble. Whatever He's On, I Want Some — Mike Wheeler listens to Kathryn Stott's Buxton recital

Classical music news - July 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Ensemble. A Transgressive Butterfly — Giuseppe Pennisi was in the audience in Rome

Ensemble. A Long-lost Operatic Masterpiece? — Mike Wheeler is not so sure about Malcolm Arnold's 'The Dancing Master', as performed at the Buxton Festival

Ensemble. Quietly Compelling — Two Buxton Festival concerts involving the guitar, reviewed by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Another Path to Modernism — John Dante Prevedini listens to an anthology of Swedish orchestral music. '... a rich expressiveness underneath the veil of subtlety and self-restraint.'

Ensemble. A Fairy-tale Opera for the 21st Century — Mike Wheeler experiences Jonathan Dove's 'The Enchanted Pig' at the Buxton Festival

 

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ALL ARTICLES PUBLISHED IN THE PREVIOUS YEAR (2020)