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