ORFEO was founded in 1979 in Munich, with the first recordings taking place in 1980. After starting as a pure license label at RCA and EMI, ORFEO began releasing its own recordings in 1982. Thanks to its close cooperation with the best singers, instrumentalists, orchestras and conductors of the past four decades, ORFEO was able to realise many world premiere recordings and to build up an extraordinarily fine catalogue, which contains more than 1,000 recordings to date.
The most famous series, ORFEO D’OR, features legendary historic performances, both from the Bayreuth and Salzburg festivals and the Vienna and Munich State Operas.
For many years, ORFEO productions have been marketed throughout the world by Naxos Music Group in more than 50 countries, and the label has since consistently expanded its digital business. Since 2015, ORFEO has been integrated as a separate limited company in Naxos Germany within the Naxos Music Group and can thus continue its successful and secure path into the future.
When the ORFEO label was established in Munich 40 years ago, few could have predicted that the record company would develop into a firmly established player in the classical music market. This Legendary Conductors 10-disc box set marking ORFEO’s 40th anniversary presents a selection of outstanding recordings with legendary conductors in the true sense of the word. Featured conductors includes Karl Böhm, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Carlos Kleiber, Dimitri Mitropoulos, Hans Knappertsbusch, Otto Klemperer, Ferenc Fricsay, Herbert von Karajan, Sergiu Celibidache, Sir John Barbirolli and Wilhelm Furtwängler.
This ORFEO 40th Anniversary 2-disc sampler reflects two of the label's areas of focus by combining highlight tracks of historical recordings with today’s global stars. The collection includes 40 recordings featuring renowned artists such as conductors Carlos Kleiber, Wilhelm Furtwängler, Karl Böhm, Gerhard Oppitz and Oleg Maisenberg; instrumentalists Baiba Skride, Daniel Müller-Schott and Dmitry Sitkovetsky; and vocalists Agnes Baltsa, Jessye Norman, Edita Gruberova, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Grace Bumbry.
Baiba Skride’s natural approach to her music-making has endeared her to some of today’s most important conductors and orchestras worldwide. She is consistently invited for her refreshing interpretations, and her sensitivity and delight in the music. The list of prestigious orchestras with whom she has worked include the Berliner Philharmoniker, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, New York Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Orchestre de Paris, London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and NHK Symphony. Notable conductors she collaborates with include Marin Alsop, Christoph Eschenbach, Ed Gardner, Susanna Mälkki, Andris Nelsons, Andres Orozco-Estrada, Santtu-Matias Rouvali, Andris Poga, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Tugan Sokhiev, John Storgårds and Juraj Valcuha.
Baiba Skride is a sought-after chamber musician internationally and is committed to the long established duo partnership with her sister Lauma. As one of the founding members of the Skride Quartet, she embarked on the quartet’s first Australian tour in November 2019. In 2020, the quartet received invitations from the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Sociedad Filarmónica de Bilbao, Harvard Musical Association Boston and Schubert Club St. Paul.
Baiba Skride is anticipating the release of her Bartók recording with the WDR Sinfonieorchester and Eivind Aadland, adding to her prolific discography, which includes her recently released American disc featuring Bernstein, Korngold and Rózsa with the Gothenburg Symphony and Tampere Philharmonic Orchestras under the baton of Santtu-Matias Rouvali; also the debut recording of the Skride Quartet, all on the ORFEO label.
Skride was born into a musical Latvian family in Riga where she began her studies, transferring in 1995 to the Conservatory of Music and Theatre in Rostock, Germany. In 2001 she won the First Prize of the Queen Elisabeth Competition. Baiba Skride plays the Yfrah Neaman Stradivarius kindly loaned to her by the Neaman family through the Beare’s International Violin Society.
BAIBA SKRIDE’S RECORDINGS
Naxos and IDAGIO, a streaming service for classical music, collaborated on a special virtual and live performance of Brahms' String Sextets Nos. 1 and 2 from the Teldex Studios in Berlin, featuring Spectrum Concerts Berlin. Founded by cellist Frank Sumner Dodge in 1988, Spectrum Concerts Berlin gives performances of chamber music ranging from Baroque and Classical to 20th-century and contemporary works that also involve renowned soloists and first-chair musicians. Spectrum Concerts Berlin has recorded extensively for the Naxos label. This was the first live-concert collaboration between Naxos and IDAGIO, with more possibly to come in the near future, so stay tuned for news of these events!
RECORDINGS FEATURING THE SPECTRUM CONCERTS BERLIN
A full list of recordings of Spectrum Concerts Berlin's music can be reached by following this link.
Gramophone Magazine has announced the launch of the public vote for its annual Orchestra of the Year Award. The winner will be selected by Gramophone’s readers and visitors to its website, based on a shortlist drawn up by the magazine’s editors.
The award celebrates ensembles that have made significant contributions and achievements to classical recordings in the past year, and once again reflects the excellence of music-making across the globe. Some of the shortlisted ensembles have recently released critically acclaimed recordings on Naxos and its affiliated labels. They are Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and Orchestre National de Lille. Click on the following link to view the full list and to vote: https://www.gramophone.co.uk/awards/gramophone-classical-music-awards-2020.
The voting period runs from now until 7 September.
DEUTSCHES SYMPHONIE-ORCHESTER BERLIN
ORCHESTRE NATIONAL DE LILLE
With its combination of an enchanting love story and broad, burlesque comedy, Cendrillon is one of the great operatic fairy tales – a Cinderella that looks back to Charles Perrault’s original story in all its richness and ambiguity. Massenet’s sensuous Belle Époque fairy tale is gilded with lavish orchestral textures and glittering vocal writing, drawing on everything from Baroque dances to Wagner-inspired chromaticism to bring its story to colourful life, conjuring a world of infinite musical and emotional variety.
Fiona Shaw’s original tour production makes its Glyndebourne Festival debut here, re-directed by Fiona Dunn and conducted by John Wilson, with a cast led by Glyndebourne favourites Danielle de Niese as Cendrillon and Kate Lindsey as her Prince.
‘… conductor John Wilson makes an endless delight of the enchanting candyfloss score.’ – The Stage ★★★★
‘A savvy modern-day makeover.’ – The Times
|Cendrillon||Danielle de Niese|
|Madame de la Haltiére||Agnes Zwierko|
|Le Prince Charmant||Kate Lindsey|
|Le Fée||Nina Minasyan|
London Philharmonic Orchestra
The Glyndebourne Chorus
|Revival Director||Fiona Dunn|
|Costume Designer||Nicky Gillibrand|
|Lighting Designer||Anna Watson|
Directed for the screen by François Roussillon
More full-length videos? NaxosVideoLibrary.com brings you an extensive streaming video library of classical music performances, opera, ballet, live concerts and documentaries. Watch the world's greatest opera houses, ballet companies, orchestras and artists perform on demand! NaxosVideoLibrary.com offers over 2,800 full-length videos, accessible anytime, anywhere.
Semyon Alexeyevich Barmotin (1877–1939) was a student of Balakirev and Rimsky-Korsakov. His fate under the Soviet regime in the 1930s remains a mystery, but what survives of his music is impressive in both scale and content. These world premiere recordings are filled with colour and contrast: the Tema con variazioni transforms its material into a multitude of moods to conclude in a symphonic march, while the 20 Preludes are striking in their sophisticated harmonies and heightened emotional impact.
This new Beethoven symphony cycle with the Malmö Symphony Orchestra is conductor Robert Trevino’s debut release on Ondine. Trevino is one of today's fastest rising young conductors, known for his fresh and vivid interpretations of both standard repertoire and contemporary works. Trevino is currently chief conductor of the Malmö Symphony Orchestra and music director of the Basque National Orchestra. After studies with conductors David Zinman, Seiji Ozawa and Michael Tilson Thomas, Trevino worked closely as Leif Segerstam’s assistant before making his debuts with a number of leading symphony orchestras worldwide. These Beethoven symphonies were recorded in connection with a Beethoven festival which was arranged in Malmö, Sweden in October 2019.
Robert Trevino is invited by Apple Music to guest curate ‘The Beethoven Effect’ playlist. ‘Beethoven is one of those few composers who maintain an international name recognition, both amongst classical music lovers and with those who have yet to fall in low with our art form. Almost everyone has heard of Beethoven,’ says Trevino. ‘I would like to look both at musical works which must have seriously affected Beethoven's sense of music's role in the world – how it can inspire mankind to do better – and at works from others who have sought to continue his musical journey towards peace, towards love.’ Listen to this playlist which explores the music Beethoven made and the works he inspired.
This release is a world premiere recording that allows us to rediscover the amazing talent of the 18th-century composer Carlo Arrigoni, whose oeuvre comprises oratorios, operas and a number of arias and cantatas.
The arias and cantatas featured in this programme were likely composed around 1737–38, during his Viennese period. In them we can fully appreciate the signature style of a mature composer, secure in the wealth of experience acquired during his European trips. His approach to composing is always recognisable and individual, characterised by rich creativity and exceptional mastery of the various techniques. The works included in this release evoke a range of feelings: from moving arias imbued with sorrow and disenchantment, to lighter, more playful atmospheres which are characterised by lively rhythms.
An eclectic musician, Arrigoni admirably blends different styles and influences in his output, which ensures that his works never sound banal, but are characterised by a very personal and highly convincing imprint. His chamber music output is of historical and musical importance for us today. The sonatas for mandolin contained in this album were published in 2018 by Davide Ferella himself, while the vocal music tracks are still unpublished and preserved on manuscript at the Yale library.
RECOMMENDED RECORDINGS FEATURING WORKS FOR MANDOLIN
The ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra was thrilled to resume its recording session for the last volume of Capriccio's Walter Braunfels series on 12 June. This was the first time the orchestra had met following a 3-month lock-down because of Covid-19. Seats were reorganised to ensure members stayed a safe distance apart, especially in the woodwind and brass sections.
WALTER BRAUNFEL SERIES ON CAPRICCIO
‘A fine tribute, then, to a composer who deserved a better fate.’
– American Record Guide on Braunfel’s Grosse Messe (C5267)
‘Capriccio’s sound quality is clear and vibrant.’
– Fanfare on Braunfel’s Piano and Orchestra Works (C5345)
Looking for new music? Our selection of curated playlists has you covered with music to complement the season, moment, or activity! Celebrate Classical Guitar Month with our collection of guitar works, sink into calming choral classics with Magnificent Choral, join unCLASSIFIED’s celebration of Classical Pride, and discover some of the most popular tracks from Grand Piano. Happy listening!
Apple TV+ has revived Amazing Stories, the science-fiction and fantasy anthology that Steven Spielberg produced in the mid-1980s. The executive producers for the new series include Spielberg, Edward Kitsis, Adam Horowitz, Darryl Frank, and Justin Falvey. Leoš Janáček's V mlhach (In the Mists), performed by Ewa Kupiec, is featured in episode 5 of the anthology series.
Need to license some music for a project and don’t know where to start? Visit Naxos Licensing to find out how!
Celebrating the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth
In celebration of Beethoven’s 250th birth year, we have curated a special Celebrate Beethoven playlist which is refreshed monthly according to various interesting themes based on his life, compositional periods, genre, and more. The tracks are sourced from the Naxos Complete Beethoven Edition, a new 90-disc boxed set also released to mark the anniversary year, hailed by the critics or being the most comprehensive set available.
This month we focus on his music for CHAMBER MUSIC.
Beethoven’s chamber music contains some of his most joyful and transcendent works. Included here are two great violin sonatas and arguably his greatest cello sonata, as well as the first movement of his Piano Trio No. 7, Op. 97, the 'Archduke', and what remains to this day one of the most monumental works for string quartet, the Grosse Fuge, Op. 133. This collection also illustrates Beethoven’s mastery in writing for the horn, and for septet and octet.
Follow the Celebrate Beethoven playlist on your favourite streaming platform to discover a wide range of works from one of the most influential composers in the history of classical music.
Themed Digital Album
Each month, we also have corresponding digital albums that you may download and enjoy again and again. Please click on the cover image to your left to download this month's release and remember to come back and visit our mini‑site each month for more amazing music!
|This CELEBRATE BEETHOVEN catalogue contains an impressive collection of works by this master composer across the Naxos Music Group labels.|
Beethoven’s monumental contribution to Western classical music is celebrated here in this definitive collection marking the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth. Surveying the totality of his career and achievement, the Complete Edition spans orchestral, concerto, keyboard, chamber, music for the stage, choral and vocal works, encompassing his most familiar and iconic masterpieces, alongside rarities and recently reconstructed fragments and sketches in world premiere recordings.
Visit and bookmark the mini-site for this release, which will be regularly updated.
Check out DeepDiscount.com’s unboxing video of the Naxos Beethoven Complete Edition: