Classical Music Daily — all articles published in 2022


Classical music news. January 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

Classical music news. Taiwan's New Landmark — Taipei Performing Arts Centre is to open in Summer 2022

CD Spotlight. Uniquely Gifted — Schubert's symphonies, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'A deluge of unending beauty that goes straight to the heart, gloriously performed and recorded.'

Ensemble. Nicely Contrasted — Mike Wheeler listens to Christmas music from Derby Bach Choir, Derventio Brass and Old Vicarage School Choir

CD Spotlight. True to the Composer's Original Intentions — Schubert's Octet, heard by Geoff Pearce. '... the sound is detailed and crisp, and the balance is good.'

CD Spotlight. Absolutely Riveting — Gerald Fenech listens to Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante and Violin Concerto No 5. '... the Pochekin duo exudes brilliance, virtuosity and an ebullient sense of occasion ...'

Ensemble. A Sonic Silk Road — Music for guitar, for erhu and for the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, heard by Adam J Sacks

CD Spotlight. A Love Story in Two Quartets — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Janáček, played by the New Zealand String Quartet. '... an excellent reading ...'

Classical music news - December 2021 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world lost last month

CD Spotlight. Suggestive Interweavings — Twentieth century harpsichord concertos by Falla, Poulenc and Bacarisse, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... a highly enjoyable issue, full of imaginative music ...'

Ensemble. Musical Fairy Tales — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to ballet music in Rome

CD Spotlight. Underground Virtuosity — John Dante Prevedini listens to viol consort suites by Matthew Locke. 'Locke's imitative counterpoint shines through with a crispness and clarity ...'

CD Spotlight. Music of the Utmost Beauty and Originality — Gerald Fenech listens to Thomas Jensen conducting music by Jean Sibelius. '... full of fire, passion and, above all, authority ...'

CD Spotlight. The Ultimate Recording — François-Xavier Roth's recording of Debussy's 'Pelléas et Mélisande', recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... all are truly outstanding ...'

CD Spotlight. Highly Imaginative — Fantasies by Sousa, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... the music is as exciting and entertaining as one would wish for.'

CD Spotlight. Sex, Jealousy and the Sea — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Hans Werner Henze's 'Das verratene Meer'. '... an excellent reading ...'

Ensemble. An Italian Creation — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Giuseppe Carpani's Italian language version of Haydn's oratorio

CD Spotlight. Vivacious Performances — Music from Scotland, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... a spectacular album full of inspirational melodies that go straight to the heart.'

CD Spotlight. The New Civic Composer — John Dante Prevedini listens to music by young Canadian Daniel Pelton. '... a remarkable collaboration uniting forces across Calgary's entire musical landscape despite extraordinary logistical hurdles.'

Ensemble. Káťa Enthralls Rome — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences a Janáček first performance in Italy's capital

CD Spotlight. Magical Stuff — Gerald Fenech listens to Eric Coates' 'Springtime Suite' and other orchestral works. 'Andrew Penny and his Slovaks deliver some absolutely gorgeous performances full of warmth, charm and grace ...'

CD Spotlight. Lovely and Very Effective — Music from Central and Eastern Europe for cello and piano, recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... very gifted, skilful and inspired ...'

CD Spotlight. Absolutely Superlative — Gerald Fenech listens to Wagner's 'Götterdämmerung' from 'The Ring on the Rhine'. 'The performance eschews grandeur from beginning to end, and both singers and orchestra respond magnificently.'

CD Spotlight. Music as Manifesto — John Dante Prevedini listens to contemporary music by Nastasia Khrushcheva. '... genuinely powerful and positively transformative ...'

CD Spotlight. New Facets of Vital Importance — Little-known music by George Enescu, highly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Passionate and exciting performances complement an invaluable addition to the Enescu discography.'

CD Spotlight. Multiple Aesthetic References — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Alessandro Perini. '... an excellent reading ...'

CD Spotlight. A Catalogue of Dreams — Gerald Fenech listens to Adolphe Adam's ballet 'La jolie fille de Gand'. 'Andrew Mogrelia and his Queensland ensemble play with real gusto, and the music is made to sound less lightweight than it really is.'

Classical music news. February 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

CD Spotlight. Natural Sincerity — Max Bruch's complete works for violin and orchestra, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Antje Weithass is an exceptionally gifted soloist, and her interpretations are phenomenally exciting, vibrant and consistently breathtaking.'

CD Spotlight. A Magical Touch with Orchestral Colours — Music by Ravel, heard by Natalie Artemas-Polak. 'John Wilson and the Sinfonia of London's superb disc is a joy to listen to, and the sound quality is crisp and clear.'

Classical music news - January 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world lost this month

CD Spotlight. Stimulating and Challenging — Concertos by Kalevi Aho, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Invigorating stuff in excellent sonics and detailed annotations.'

CD Spotlight. Liszt's Fantasies — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Franz Liszt for piano and orchestra. '... an excellent reading ...'

Ensemble. Pierrot in Rome — Music by Arnold Schoenberg, Sylvano Bussotti and Giacomo Puccini, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. A Fresh Appraisal — Gerald Fenech listens to music by Hanns Eisler. '... the music is beautiful and expressive and filled with a mixture of moods that reflect the tempestuous times in which it was written.'

Classical music news - February 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

CD Spotlight. A Young Saxon's Occasional Opera — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to 'Enea in Caonia' by Hasse. 'Stefano Montanari conducts ... skilfully, mostly in support of the voices.'

CD Spotlight. Sparkling Joy — Gerald Fenech listens to four volumes of Danacord's series of recordings by Danish conductor Thomas Jensen. '... all Jensen's interpretative genius is captured with electrifying vividness.'

Ensemble. Wonderfully Gutsy — Mike Wheeler listens to Franz Schmidt, Rachmaninov and Dvořák in Nottingham

Ensemble. Excitement at Coventry Cathedral — Roderic Dunnett experiences Nitin Sawhney's new work 'Ghosts in the Ruins'

Ensemble. A Rare Bird — Verdi's 'Luisa Miller', heard by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. Beauty and Emotional Depth — Geoff Pearce recommends Schubert's 'Winterreise', performed by Mark Padmore and Paul Lewis. '... everything that I could wish for ...'

CD Spotlight. Posthumous Idolisation — Gerald Fenech begs you to buy Warner Classics' box set of recordings by Romanian violinist Johanna Martzy. '... legendary renditions full of mesmerizing violin playing ...'

Ensemble. A Wide Chronological and Stylistic Range — Mike Wheeler listens to British pianist George Harliono

CD Spotlight. A Series of Polished Gems — Roderic Dunnett listens to chamber, instrumental music and songs by Gerard Schurmann. 'This is one of the most enchanting, fragile, flawless song cycles I have ever heard, anywhere.'

CD Spotlight. Noble Grief — Music from Leonard Slatkin and his family, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... legendary renditions full of mesmerizing violin playing ...'

CD Spotlight. Preserving Byrd's Momentum — John Dante Prevedini listens to William Byrd's keyboard music, played by Friederike Chylek. 'In every one of Chylek's interpretations, I hear an uncommonly sober balance of emotional expressiveness with technical clarity ...'

Ensemble. Modern Madrigals in the Seventeenth Century — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to vocal music by Gesualdo and some of his contemporaries

Ensemble. A Compelling Intimacy — Mike Wheeler listens to Beethoven and Berlioz from Stephen Waarts, the Hallé Orchestra and Maxime Pascal

CD Spotlight. Touching Moments that Stir the Soul — Gerald Fenech listens to J S Bach, Buxtehude and Schütz, performed by Iestyn Davies and colleagues. 'The richness of the music is matched by the glorious singing and playing of Jonathan Cohen's team ...'

Ensemble. A Fascinatingly Piquant Sound-world — Music for saxophone and harp, heard by Mike Wheeler

In Memoriam – Joseph Horovitz (1926-2022) — Malcolm Miller writes about the British Vienna-born composer, conductor, pianist and teacher

CD Spotlight. Highly Romantic — Gerald Fenech listens to orchestral music by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor. '... this re-issue still sounds fresh and lively, credit to Adrian Leaper's advocacy for this fine music ...'

CD Spotlight. Songs of Stevenson — Roderic Dunnett listens to a recital by Scottish bass Brian Bannatyne-Scott. '... a notably original disc ... well worth exploring.'

CD Spotlight. Many Fine Moments — Geoff Pearce listens to Richard Strauss played by the Carnegie Mellon Wind Ensemble. '... a fine disc of works which are not recorded so often ...'

Ensemble. The Magical Countertenor Voice — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Raffaele Pé

Ensemble. Complete Assurance — Mike Wheeler listens to Mozart, Debussy and Prokofiev, played by Ke Ma

Classical music news. March 2022 Newsletter — Watch and listen to our March 2022 newsletter

Ensemble. Three Contemporary Ballets in Rome — Giuseppe Pennisi was in the audience for 'Herman Schmerman', 'Walking Mad' and 'From Afar', to music by Thom Willems, Maurice Ravel, Arvo Pärt and Ezio Bosso

CD Spotlight. A Thrilling, Epic Quality — Gerald Fenech listens to Anton Bruckner's Symphony No 0, 'Die Nullte'. 'The Bruckner Orchester Linz plays superbly throughout and Markus Poschner's enthusiasm for this music allows him to reveal details of orchestration that, maybe, were hitherto missed.'

Listening to Tchaikovsky — Béla Hartmann asks some searching questions about the pressure being placed on Russian artists following Putin's invasion of Ukraine

Ensemble. Changing Moods — Mike Wheeler listens to a talk about, then a performance of, Elgar's Symphony No 1

CD Spotlight. An Operatic Oratorio — Attilio Ariosti's 'La Profezia d'Eliseo', recommended by Giuseppe Pennisi. 'The rendering is very good: ensemble and singers are Baroque specialists.'

Classical music news. March 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

CD Spotlight. Exhilarating from Start to Finish — Gerald Fenech listens to suites of incidental music by Arthur Sullivan. 'Andrew Penny is an enthusiastic advocate of this composer, and his lively and beautifully shaped interpretations are a treat to the ear.'

CD Spotlight. The Selflessness of Schütz — John Dante Prevedini listens to music by Heinrich Schütz and some of his contemporaries. '... a deeply satisfying listening experience ...'

CD Spotlight. Finely Wrought — Symphonies by Johann Baptist Vaňhal, recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Michael Halász conducts with the usual panache, drawing committed performances full of zest and swagger from the Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra.'

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.'

CD Spotlight. Much to Enjoy — Violin concertos by Vivaldi, Locatelli and Leclair senior delight Gerald Fenech. 'Théotime Langlois de Swarte despatches these pieces with glorious dexterity, and the freshness of his playing is so engaging that you never tire of listening.'

Classical music news. No Russian Music? — Should we ban Tchaikovsky because of Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine?

CD Spotlight. Helen (without Troy) — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Johann Simon Mayr's 'Elena'. 'Even if I doubt that this Elena will ever be staged again, this CD is a good way to appreciate Mayr's strengths and weaknesses.'

CD Spotlight. Important Women Composers — British music by Ethel Smyth, Susan Spain-Dunk, Constance Warren and Ruth Gipps, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... performances of the highest calibre, combining irrepressible beauty and fragility with technical mastery that brings out all the suavity of these sophisticated creations.'

Ensemble. Eloquently Projected — Mike Wheeler is impressed by the Fitzroy Quartet's performance of music by Haydn, Mozart, James MacMillan, Arvo Pärt and Beethoven

Profile. Behind the Words and Between the Lines — Ron Bierman talks to Canadian conductor Yves Abel

Ensemble. Simply Outstanding — Mike Wheeler is impressed by performances of Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky and Myroslav Skoryk from Patricia Kopatchinskaya, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra

CD Spotlight. Utterly Beautiful — Nadejda Vlaeva plays piano music by Bulgarian composer Pancho Vladigerov, delighting Roderic Dunnett. '... a notably original disc ... well worth exploring.'

Classical music news - March 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

CD Spotlight. A Spirit of Newfound Confidence — Gerald Fenech listens to the last instalment of Andris Nelsons' Bruckner cycle for Deutsche Gramophon. 'Nelsons goes straight to the heart of this quite divinely inspired music with confidence and conviction ...'

CD Spotlight. Uncloaking a Sonic Universe — John Dante Prevedini listens to Rebeca Omordia's album 'African Pianism'. '... a compact, balanced and vital gateway to the work of African composers in the Western classical tradition ...'

Ensemble. Symbolism and Realism — Mike Wheeler experiences Opera North's new production of Verdi's 'Rigoletto'

CD Spotlight. Captivatingly Melodic — Gerald Fenech admires Tatjana Ruhland's playing of August Eberhard Müller flute concertos. 'Tatjana Ruhland ... is, in every sense of the word, a 'sorceress' of the instrument ...'

CD Spotlight. Unjustly Neglected — Geoff Pearce listens to Enescu chamber music. '... a very fine recording ...'

CD Spotlight. Bruckner the Trumpet — Gerald Fenech listens to Bruckner's Symphony No 3, transposed for organ. '... Hansjörg Albrecht's renditions of these spectacular transcriptions by Erwin Horn are absolutely flawless.'

Profile. Andriy Lehki — John Dante Prevedini interviews Ukrainian musicologist Andriy Lehki about his undelivered 24 February 2022 lecture, 'Minimalism - The Pathway to Success'

Ensemble. Original and Impressive — Geoff Pearce listens to Adrian Williams' Symphony No 1

Classical music news - The Usedom Music Festival — A German music festival features three concerts with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra

CD Spotlight. A Spicy, Sexy Comedy — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Saint-Saëns' 'Phryné'. '... a very happy discovery where Greek myth marries French opéra comique.'

Ensemble. A Real Celebration — Mike Wheeler listens to Dvořák, Bruch and Brahms

Ensemble. Two Performances of 'Turandot' in Rome — Giuseppe Pennisi attended one and saw the other on TV

Ensemble. Assumed Identities and Mis-matched Couples — Mike Wheeler reviews Tim Albery's production of Handel's 'Alcina' for Opera North

Classical music news. April 2022 Newsletter — Watch and listen to our April 2022 newsletter

CD Spotlight. An Immense Achievement — The final disc in Naxos' series of John Philip Sousa wind band music, recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... Keith Brion and his players do themselves proud with some superb playing full of dash and swagger ...'

Classical music news. Obituary — Lyell Cresswell (1944-2022)

CD Spotlight. A Verdi Avenue — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Francesco Meli. '... a demonstration of Meli's ability but also of his genuine love for Verdi ...'

CD Spotlight. Challenging in the Extreme — Symphonies by Brazilian composer Claudio Santoro, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... passionately and intensely executed by Neil Thomson and his Brazilian ensemble, the Goiás Philharmonic Orchestra.'

Classical music news. Obituary — Boris Brott (1944-2022)

CD Spotlight. On the Border between Innovation and Experimentation — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Giacinto Scelsi. '... possessed by sounds, trapped in fingertips that are constantly forced to move.'

CD Spotlight. Incomparable Musical Beauty — Gerald Fenech listens to Elgar's 'The Dream of Gerontius' from Carnegie Hall. '... a precious addition to this acclaimed treasure trove of historic recordings ...'

Ensemble. Conceived for TV — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences Teatro dell'Opera di Roma's 'La bohème'

CD Spotlight. Thoroughly Delightful — Geoff Pearce listens to chamber music by Poulenc. '... the performers are all very fine ...'

CD Spotlight. Magical Brilliance — Gerald Fenech listens to orchestral music by Ravel. '... wonderfully detailed accounts that reveal all of Ravel's orchestral finesse and deft harmonic touches.'

Classical music news. Obituary — Karl Korte (1928-2022)

Ensemble. An Interesting Contamination of Genres — Giuseppe Pennisi reports from the first Italian performance of 'The Passion according to St Mark' by contemporary Polish composer Paweł Mykietyn

Classical music news. Obituary — Philippe Boesmans (1936-2022)

Ensemble. Poise and Sensitivity — Mike Wheeler listens to baroque choral music by J S Bach, Handel and Purcell

CD Spotlight. A Glorious Operatic Triumph — Gerald Fenech listens to Korngold's 'Die tote Stadt'. '... Klaus Florian Vogt and Camilla Nylund rise superbly to the occasion with some searing interpretations worthy of the score.'

CD Spotlight. The Joy of Harpsichord — Margherita Porfido plays music from the south of Italy, heard by Giuseppe Pennisi. '... fundamental to the understanding of music between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries in southern Italy.'

Ensemble. Fascinatingly Elusive — Dora Pejačević, Sibelius and Mahler from Tamsin Waley-Cohen, Jan Latham-Koenig and the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler

Classical music news - April 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Classical music news. Ana Sokolovic — Quebec's contemporary music society appoints Serbian-born Ana Sokolovic as its new artistic director

Ensemble. Welcome Back, Puritani — Giuseppe Pennisi was in the audience, in Rome, for Bellini's last great masterpiece

Classical music news. April-May 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

Classical music news. Music Competitions — Here are details of various music competitions taking place during the coming months

CD Spotlight. Positive Dramatic Strength — Gerald Fenech listens to Schubert overtures. 'Performances are wonderfully alive in Schellenberger's hands, and the gloriously melodic music truly sparkles with a youthful exuberance that makes your spirit soar.'

CD Spotlight. Fascinating Listening — Music by Wolfgang Rihm, recommended for those who enjoy the challenges of listening to contemporary music, by Geoff Pearce. 'The performers here really excel and do this music justice.'

CD Spotlight. Passion, Intensity and Verve — Gerald Fenech listens to Giordano's 'Siberia'. '... full of emotional warmth and heartfelt fidelity.'

CD Spotlight. Rather Joyous in Effect — Geoff Pearce listens to 'Lėti' by Gintas K. '... different pitched bells and a rather strange crackly background.'

CD Spotlight. Masterly Playing — Boris Giltburg plays two very different Beethoven piano concertos, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... brilliantly supported by Vasily Petrenko and his Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra ...'

CD Spotlight. Simply Outstanding — John Eliot Gardiner's nine CD Purcell set, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... renditions out of the ordinary, where Gardiner's expressive ardour and unbridled intensity allow him to reveal all the gracefulness, subtlety, pathos and nobility of Purcell's uniquely human music.'

Classical music news. May 2022 Newsletter — Our May 2022 PDF newsletter has just been published

CD Spotlight. Bright and Pleasing Music — Geoff Pearce listens to works by Eric Biddington. 'The orchestra is solid, the brass section is particularly impressive and the recording does full justice to this bright and pleasing music.'

Ensemble. Winter and Spring — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to orchestral music in Rome

CD Spotlight. Borrowing Music by Other Composers — Gerald Fenech unreservedly recommends the compilation opera 'Caio Fabbricio'. '... brilliant performances from both singers and players ...'

CD Spotlight. Truly Gripping, Attractive and Alluring — Johann Mattheson's oratorio 'Joseph', highly commended by Roderic Dunnett. '... an outstanding performance in every way, and indeed a perfect introduction to Mattheson's fresh and vital writing ...'

CD Spotlight. Dance or Die — Gerald Fenech enjoys a disc exploring the influence of Italy on Austrian and German composers. '... performances full of rhythmic energy, explosive colours and, above all, harmonic ingenuity.'

Ensemble. Suggesting the Possibility of Renewal — Beethoven, Brahms, Vaughan Williams and Walton from Boris Giltburg, Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. The Complete Shostakovich String Quartets — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Quartetto Prometeo in Rome

Ensemble. Stewards of Creation — Haydn's 'The Creation' marks Harry Christophers' final concert with Boston's Handel and Haydn Society, heard by John Dante Prevedini

Ensemble. Absolute Ravel — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Maurice Ravel played by Neapolitan pianist Roberto Cominati

Classical music news. The Book of Moments — Heresy Records releases Chinese pianist Ji Liu's eighteen hour 'Sonata Fantasy, The Book of Moments', which honours frontline pandemic workers

Profile. A Dramatic Entrance — Matt Spangler and Lucy Mauro shine a light on an American classical pioneer

Ensemble. Becoming One — Mike Wheeler listens to music by Raphael Clarkson, Cecilia McDowall, Beethoven, Bartók, Preetha Narayanan and Mozart to celebrate Sinfonia Viva's fortieth anniversary

Ensemble. Merging Scores with Care — Giuseppe Pennisi enjoys the ballet 'Il Corsaro'

CD Spotlight. An Unexpected Kinship — Stephen Francis Vasta listens to Susanna Mälkki conducting Bartók. 'The Helsinki Philharmonic sounds good, with expressive reeds and resonant strings ...'

CD Spotlight. Very Infectious — Gerald Fenech listens to several recent recordings of British music. 'Another stylish re-issue in a series that is experiencing a highly deserved renaissance.'

Classical music news. Obituary — Teresa Berganza (1935-2022)

Profile. Suffering and Delight — Ron Bierman talks to conductor Rafael Payare

Ensemble. In Full Command — British harpist Lucy Nolan plays music by Marcel Tournier, Benjamin Britten, Sally Beamish, Paul Patterson, Tsvetlina Likova and Astor Piazzolla, heard by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Solace to Listeners — Patrick Maxwell listens to a box set of John Barbirolli's Elgar recordings for Warner Classics. '... a musical artefact which still tells us how Britain's most famous composer really can sound like ...'

Ensemble. Major Success for a Young Orchestra — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Mozart, played by the Canova Chamber Orchestra

CD Spotlight. A Scintillating Operatic Rarity — Gerald Fenech's discovery of the year is possibly Danish composer Horneman's opera 'Aladdin'. 'Another stylish re-issue in a series that is experiencing a highly deserved renaissance.'

CD Spotlight. Shooting and Madness — Geoff Pearce listens to a powerful opera about the Vietnam War. 'This disk will shock you like very few other recordings ...'

Ensemble. A Crash Between Worlds — Adam J Sacks describes something entirely new, combining Brahms and Radiohead

CD Spotlight. Star of the North — Gerald Fenech strongly recommends Meyerbeer's 'L'Étoile du Nord' on Naxos. 'Vladimir Jurowski conducts the piece with natural gusto and sparkling flair ...'

Ensemble. Effectively Realised — Mike Wheeler listens to Brahms' Requiem

Classical music news. June 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

CD Spotlight. Sorrowful Magnificence — Gerald Fenech is impressed by Johann David Heinichen's Passion Oratorios. '... engrossing performances that are as gripping as they are reverential.'

CD Spotlight. The Magic of Ballets Russes — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Warner Classics' box set. '... a gem which should be on the shelves of all those interested in the music of the early decades of the twentieth century ...'

CD Spotlight. A Rich Tradition — Gerald Fenech listens to orchestral music by American composer William Grant Still. 'A peach of an issue, superbly performed, recorded and annotated.'

Ensemble. Van Zweden and the Double Fifth — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to two symphonies in Rome

Classical music news - May 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Classical music news. June 2022 Newsletter — Watch and listen to our June 2022 newsletter - a special feature on women composers

CD Spotlight. Exceptionally Pleasing — String quartets by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'The Arabella Quartet despatches these graceful cameos with aplomb, and the playing is immensely cohesive and consistently alive.'

CD Spotlight. Powerful Drama — Roderic Dunnett listens to 'Der Freischütz' from René Jacobs and the Freiburger Barockorchester. '... a whispering, confidential or, where needed, overawing and commanding performance ...'

CD Spotlight. Breathtaking Dexterity — Gerald Fenech listens to Schneider flute concertos. 'Gaby Pas-Van Riet despatches these irresistibly beautiful pieces with infectious warmth and grace ...'

Ensemble. A Revolutionary Score — Giuseppe Pennisi was in the audience for Verdi's 'Ernani', back in Rome

CD Spotlight. A Monumental Work — Geoff Pearce is impressed by Viktor Ullmann's opera 'Der Kaiser von Atlantis'. 'The performance ... cannot be faulted ...'

CD Spotlight. Overwhelmingly Tuneful — Gerald Fenech listens to rare music by Franz von Suppé. '... vibrant playing full of unalloyed joy.'

CD Spotlight. A Fresh Rendering — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to solo violin sonatas by Eugène Ysaÿe, played by Anca Vasile Caraman. '... a gem which should be on the shelves of all those interested in the music of the early decades of the twentieth century ...'

CD Spotlight. A Zany, Madcap Farce — Gerald Fenech listens to Albert Roussel's operetta 'Le Testament de la Tante Caroline'. '... vibrant playing full of unalloyed joy.'

CD Spotlight. Quite Muddied and On Steroids — Geoff Pearce has very mixed feelings about Andrius Puskunigis' new recording of Handel oboe concertos. '... there are some truly lovely moments ...'

Classical music news. Obituary — David Lloyd-Jones (1934-2022)

CD Spotlight. Beauty to Entice the Ears — Gerald Fenech listens to a compilation mass from Antonio Vivaldi's music. '... vibrant playing full of unalloyed joy.'

CD Spotlight. Subtle Differences — Ravel on period instruments, heartily recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... there are some truly lovely moments ...'

Ensemble. Three Days at the Ravenna Summer Festival — Giuseppe Pennisi reports from 'The Italian Salzburg'

CD Spotlight. Simply Irresistible — Gerald Fenech listens to two albums of British music. '... an inspiration for other composers ...'

CD Spotlight. Fresh and Interesting — Music by Ghedini and Hindemith, wholeheardedly recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... there are some truly lovely moments ...'

CD Spotlight. The Ravel Affair — Gerald Fenech listens to a series of works by Maurice Ravel which all failed to win the Prix de Rome. 'Pascal Rophé draws some convincing performances and, in his hands, the music has an immediacy that keeps it consistently fresh and vivid.'

CD Spotlight. Treasureable Qualities — Gerald Fenech listens to Andris Nelsons conducting two orchestras in music by Richard Strauss. '... superlative performances from both orchestras, who are on top form throughout.'

Ensemble. Polish Style in the Gardens of Rome — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to sixteenth and seventeenth century Polish Baroque music

Ensemble. Bright Spots — Mike Wheeler listens to Jess Gillam and the Hallé Orchestra conducted by Stephen Bell

Ensemble. Passionate Conducting — Daniel Harding concludes the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia's 2021-22 symphonic season in Rome, reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi

CD Spotlight. Expanses in Miniature — Roberta Rust plays piano music by Louis W Ballard, heard by John Dante Prevedini. '... a probing, articulate and understated artistic collaboration whose proper exposure is long overdue.'

Classical music news - June 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Ensemble. Deeply Mystical Intentions — Wagner's 'Parsifal', on tour with Opera North, heard by Mike Wheeler

CD Spotlight. Delicately Sensitive Performances — Operatic fantasies by Sigismond Thalberg, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... characteristically intense and warm ...'

CD Spotlight. Compelling Performances — Music by John Ireland, recommended by Geoff Pearce. 'John Wilson and the Sinfonia of London have really made these works sparkle ...'

CD Spotlight. Exhilarating Interpretations — Unknown Haydn symphonies, unreservedly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... gloriously expressive playing ...'

Ensemble. Commemorating Malcolm Goldring — The Sitwell Singers pay tribute to their former conductor, with help from various friends and colleagues, including a new work written for the occasion by Bob Chilcott, heard by Mike Wheeler

Ensemble. Songs of the Distance — Giuseppe Pennisi describes how American music is back, alive and well at the Spoleto Festival

Ensemble. A Rare and Novel Experience — Opera Warwick's production of Weber's 'The Marksman', heard by Roderic Dunnett

Classical music news. July 2022 Newsletter — Watch and listen to our July 2022 newsletter - Youth Involvement in Classical Music

Classical music news. Obituary — Richard Taruskin (1945-2022)

CD Spotlight. A New Dimension — Gerald Fenech listens to 'Klezmer Fiddler on the Roof'. '... an orchestral disc that aspiring artists and fans of theatre music can sing along to.'

CD Spotlight. Interesting and Quite Unique — Geoff Pearce commends this set of orchestral music by Ukrainian composer Boris Lyatoshynsky. 'There is some very impressive playing here by this magnificent orchestra.'

Ensemble. Changing Tastes — Giuseppe Pennisi was in the audience for Leonard Bernstein's 'Mass'

Classical music news. Pierrot Chamber Music Festival — The Pierrot Chamber Music Festival celebrates its summer season at the Adelphi University Performing Arts Center in Garden City, New York, USA

Ensemble. A Triumph — Roderic Dunnett listens to two one-act operas

Classical music news. Bard Music Festival — Bard Music Festival, beginning 5 August 2022, explores the life and times of one of the last great romantics in 'Rachmaninoff and His World'

Ensemble. Beyond Earthly Existence — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on the International Chigiana Festival and Summer Academy

CD Spotlight. Champagne Stuff — Gerald Fenech listens to Rossini's 'La Scala di Seta'. 'José-Miguel Pérez-Sierra's vivid conducting draws from both singers and Kraków Philharmonic Orchestra players performances full of delectable charm and infectious pleasure ...'

CD Spotlight. Good Humour and Musical Gestures — Geoff Pearce listens to wind quintets by Bentzon. 'This is very enjoyable music and beautifully performed.'

CD Spotlight. A Transcendental Experience — Choral music by Franz Joseph Haydn, unreservedly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... these interpretations overflow with humanity, humility, sincerity and, above all, a heartfelt spontaneity ...'

CD Spotlight. Effective and Uncomplicated — Geoff Pearce listens to chamber music by New Zealand composer Eric Biddington. 'These performances are a great testament to the Christchurch music making scene and to the composer who has been an important part of it.'

Classical music news - July 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Ensemble. Stunningly Staged and Sung — Longborough Festival Opera's 'Die tote Stadt', extolled by Roderic Dunnett

Ensemble. Taut and Focused — Mike Wheeler reports from the Buxton Festival on Rossini's 'La Donna del Lago'

CD Spotlight. An Additional Significance and Poignancy — Gerald Fenech listens to César Franck orchestral music, recorded in Ukraine. 'Francisco Varela draws the very best from the Lviv National Philharmonic Orchestra of Ukraine, and performances are consistently fresh, alive and often compelling.'

Ensemble. Warmth and Sassiness — Mike Wheeler was at Buxton Opera House for 'Gypsy: A Musical Fable'

CD Spotlight. Dimensions of Accessibility — John Dante Prevedini is inspired by Takashi Yoshimatsu's piano suites. '... Oshima-Ryan brings a remarkable clarity and precision to the performance ...'

Classical music news - Return of the Discovery Orchestra — An American orchestra returns post-pandemic to help its audience find inspiration

Ensemble. Sit Back and Enjoy the Ride — Mike Wheeler experiences 'Viva la Diva' at Buxton

CD Spotlight. Spirit of a Nation — Gerald Fenech is impressed by music of nineteenth century Polish composers Henryk Wieniawski, Ignacy Feliks Dobrzyński and Karol Kurpiński. '... both players and soloists surpass themselves with passionate renditions ...'

Ensemble. Noteworthy and Sometimes Momentous — Roderic Dunnett visits the UK's Garsington Opera for Britten's 'The Turn of the Screw'

Ensemble. A Massive and Moving Sound — Keith Bramich listens to Dvořák's Requiem at the first evening concert of the 2022 Three Choirs Festival in Hereford Cathedral

Ensemble. Cohesive Ensemble Playing — Mike Wheeler reports on Jonathan Dove's 'Mansfield Park' at the Buxton Festival

Ensemble. An Extraordinary Journey — Mike Wheeler listens to Charles Owen's piano recital at the 2022 Buxton Festival

CD Spotlight. Nobler in the Mind? — Giuseppe Pennisi finds Joseph Summer's 'Hamlet' a musical hodgepodge. '... almost in late Romantic style.'

Ensemble. Full of Vitality — Mike Wheeler listens to the Solus Trumpet Ensemble at the 2022 Buxton Festival

Ensemble. Effectively Communicated — Mike Wheeler listens to Kate Whitley and Laura Attridge's oratorio 'Our Future In Your Hands' at Buxton

Ensemble. A Welcome Opportunity — Mike Wheeler listens to the recital 'Colour My Song' at the 2022 Buxton Festival

Ensemble. Handel vs Bononcini — Mike Wheeler listens to the English Concert and soprano Anna Dennis at the Buxton Festival

Classical music news. August 2022 Newsletter — Our August 2022 PDF newsletter has just been published

Ensemble. Songs from the Shows — Mike Wheeler enjoys a 'Strictly Musical' evening at Buxton Opera House

CD Spotlight. Legacy and Influence — Gerald Fenech listens to cantatas by Telemann. '... performances of the utmost beauty ...'

Ensemble. Vitality and Imagination — Mike Wheeler listens to the Delphine Trio, in his last report from the 2022 Buxton Festival

Ensemble. Figaro in Hollywood — Giuseppe Pennisi was at the opening night of a new production of Rossini's 'Il barbiere di Siviglia'

Ensemble. Shaped with Care — Mike Wheeler listens to Sibelius, Grieg and Dvořák from Derby Concert Orchestra and guest conductor Bob Chasey

Classical music news. August 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

Classical music news. Santander Piano Competition — Jaeden Izik-Dzurko, Xiaolu Zang and Marcel Tadokoro have won first, second and third prizes in the 2022 Santander International Piano Competition this month

CD Spotlight. A Pianist who Deserves Attention — Geoff Pearce enjoys listening to Can Çakmur. '... a stellar performance by this fine young pianist.'

CD Spotlight. Kaleidoscopic Variety — Gerald Fenech listens to music by Charles Koechlin. '... a near uncontrollable energy that almost brings Chaplin and Co back to life again.'

Ensemble. A Giggle from Start to Finish — Bampton Classical Opera's 'Fool Moon', experienced by Roderic Dunnett

CD Spotlight. Infectious Magic — Albion Records releases a disc of unusual music for the Vaughan Williams anniversary, and Gerald Fenech finds it unmissable. '... these performances are the result of deep immersion in the performing traditions of RVW's repertoire ...'

Ensemble. Unabashedly Erotic — The Rossini Opera Festival begins with a new production of 'Le Comte Ory', reviewed by Giuseppe Pennisi

Ensemble. An Opera in Need of a Haircut — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on the Rossini Opera Festival's second production of 'La gazzetta'

Ensemble. A Family Portrait in Hell — Giuseppe Pennisi experiences an excellent 'Otello' at the Rossini Opera Festival

CD Spotlight. An Almost Unworldly Acceptance and Peace — Geoff Pearce is inspired by 'Cloud Ossuary' and 'Mist Waves' - music by Douglas Knehans. '... a stellar performance by this fine young pianist.'

Classical music news. Gramercy Brass — A high profile brass group based in New York, the Gramercy Brass Orchestra, celebrates its fortieth anniversary and the ninetieth birthday of film composer John Williams

CD Spotlight. A Commanding Technique — Gerald Fenech listens to Patrick Dheur playing piano music by César Franck. 'A fine and fitting tribute to one of the most original composers ever to come out of Belgium ...'

CD Spotlight. Tender and Intimate — Geoff Pearce listens to Mahler's Fourth Symphony. 'I find this recording very satisfying on so many levels.'

Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney — Introduction

CD Spotlight. Moving the World — Gerald Fenech listens to Dvořák's last three symphonies. '... Dudamel amplifies the turbulent emotions of each work with a power and intensity that you do not hear every day.'

CD Spotlight. A Magnificent and Powerful Recording — Geoff Pearce listens to Augustin Hadelich. '... an impressive technique and tone ...'

CD Spotlight. A Spectacular Release — Gerald Fenech listens to film music played by John Wilson and the Sinfonia of London. '... an absolutely rewarding hour ...'

CD Spotlight. Double Affection — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to Malipiero. '... played impassionately ...'

Ensemble. The Craftsman and the Icon — John Dante Prevedini reports from Tanglewood

Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney — Seven Tuscan Nights

CD Spotlight. Exhilarating Performances — Orchestral music by Ludvig Norman, recommended with conviction by Gerald Fenech. '... rich in melody, colour and wide-ranging harmonies.'

CD Spotlight. A Change of Direction — French music by Debussy, Dukas and Roussel, played by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and Domingo Hindoyan, enjoyed by Geoff Pearce. '... stellar performances ...'

CD Spotlight. A Delectable Programme — Piano concertos by Johann Wilhelm Wilms, heard by Gerald Fenech. 'Brautigam's advocacy for these works borders on the obsessive, and his playing is not only full-blooded but captures the spirit of the age with immense fidelity.'

Classical music news - August 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Classical music news. September 2022 New Releases — Browse a large selection of new recordings

Classical music news. September 2022 Newsletter — Our September 2022 PDF newsletter has just been published

CD Spotlight. Outcast Composers — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to the Matangi Quartet. '... an excellent way to get acquainted with an important yet difficult period of Russian music.'

CD Spotlight. Exceptional Performances — Gerald Fenech listens to Mozart from Francesca Dego, Roger Norrington and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. 'Francesca Dego is an impassioned virtuoso, and her renditions are not only emotionally alive but also full of beguiling warmth and charm ...'

CD Spotlight. Criminal Exploits — Geoff Pearce listens to Adrian Williams' chamber concerto 'Portraits of Ned Kelly'. 'The playing is very impressive and delivers a compelling performance.'

Classical music news. Gothic Opera — This Halloween in London UK, Gothic Opera presents a double bill of unknown supernatural operas by female composers Louise Bertin and Pauline Viardot

Classical music news. Obituary — Lars Vogt (1970-2022)

CD Spotlight. Shared African Heritage — Samuel Coleridge-Taylor from Chineke! Orchestra, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... riveting stuff ...'

Ensemble. Baroque Music in Siena — Giuseppe Pennisi returns for the last weekend of the Chigiana International Festival and Music Academy

Classical music news. Winners, Projects, Cancellations — Items in the news

Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney — From swerve of shore to bend of bay

CD Spotlight. Symphonic Maturity — Patrick Maxwell listens to Sibelius symphonies. '... the wind and brass playing is pristine throughout.'

CD Spotlight. Inner Turmoil — Handel's 'Amadigi di Gaula', strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... full of passion and angst.'

CD Spotlight. A Magnificent CD — Geoff Pearce listens to music by Ruth Gipps. 'The BBC Philharmonic responds magnificently ...'

CD Spotlight. Wonderfully Transparent and Detailed — Robert McCarney listens to symphonies by Latvian/Canadian composer Tālivaldis Ķeniņš. 'The playing by all concerned is excellent.'

Ensemble. Preljocaj is Back in Rome — Giuseppe Pennisi reports on two contemporary ballets at Teatro dell'Opera di Roma

CD Spotlight. Absolutely Compelling — Cherubini, Méhul and Beethoven, recommended wholeheartedly by Gerald Fenech. 'Bernhard Forck leads with engrossing enthusiasm, and his Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin responds with some truly exhilarating performances that sweep you off your feet.'

CD Spotlight. A Plethora of Influences — Robert McCarney roundly congratulates Chandos and all involved with this CD. 'The playing by the various members of the ARC Ensemble is excellent throughout and the recording is crystal clear and atmospherically spacious.'

CD Spotlight. Beautiful and Well-crafted — Gerald Fenech listens to Johann Simon Mayr's opera 'Alfredo il Grande'. 'This is a gem of a premiere recording that should enhance Mayr's reputation as a truly fine opera composer which he richly deserves.'

Ensemble. Schubert's Octet and the Spirit of Vienna — Giuseppe Pennisi reports from the final concert of a Schubert festival in Rome

CD Spotlight. Fascinating Listening — Music by Alban Berg, recommended by Geoff Pearce. '... the BBC Symphony Orchestra is on top form ...'

CD Spotlight. Secret Love Letters — Lisa Batiashvili plays Chausson, Debussy, Franck and Szymanowski, warmly recommended by Gerald Fenech. 'Batiashvili plays this programme with ultra-sensitive feeling and moving emotional ardour that penetrate right to the heart of this sublime music which reveals the inscrutable depths of the human soul.'

CD Spotlight. Freshness and Vigour — Robert McCarney listens to music by British composer Robert Saxton. 'This is a very well prepared and presented disc that does an excellent job of providing a portrait of the composer.'

CD Spotlight. Dante's Paradise in Three Parts — Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Salvatore Sciarrino. '... the three soloists depict the protagonists of the journey to the top of Paradise very well.'

CD Spotlight. A Monumental Treasure Chest — Gerald Fenech listens to the complete Warner recordings of Frank Peter Zimmermann. 'Inspired music-making that should keep you company for months on end ...'

Classical music news - September 2022 Obituaries — Our summary of those the classical music world has lost this month

Profile. Opera is a Whole New World — As rehearsals begin for her new opera, Gabriela Lena Frank talks to Ron Bierman

Classical music news. October 2022 Newsletter — Our October 2022 MP3 newsletter has just been published

Echoes of Oblivion by Robert McCarney — Sound Sense and Nonsense