Naxos Bestsellers February 2024

Top 20 Audio Releases
SUPPÉ, F. von: Fantasia Symphonica • Orchestral Overtures and Preludes
Tonkünstler Orchestra • Rudner

‘…a fresh insight into the now-vanished world of Franz von Suppé, a composer of so many engaging attributes, evidently shared by this conductor [Rudner].’ – Gramophone

The SWR Recordings – MOZART, W.A. • HAYDN, J. • BEETHOVEN, L. van • (1978–1996)
Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra • Bertini

‘The performances all reflect a supremely civilized style, eschewing extremes of tempo, respecting the composer’s directions and with always at least good recording quality and orchestral playing. They make for very enjoyable listening to 19th (and late 18th) century classics.’ – Classical Music Sentinel

BRUCKNER, A.: Symphony No. 1 (1868 Linz version, ed. T. Röder) (Complete Symphony Versions Edition, Vol. 11)
Linz Bruckner Orchestra • M. Poschner

‘…Poschner generates plenty of drive and excitement, steering the music towards a thrilling conclusion, reining back persuasively before the final acceleration.’ – MusicWeb International

FRANCK, C.: Symphony in D Minor • CHAUSSON, E.: Symphony in B-Flat Major
Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin • Tingaud

‘…this splendid new performance does full justice to the piece [Symphony in D Minor]. Even though the catalogue is full to the brim of rival recordings, this one is highly competitive.’ – Classical CD Choice

BEETHOVEN, L. van: Complete Piano Sonatas (9-Disc Boxed Set)
Boris Giltburg

‘It is apparent that Giltburg is a highly advanced technician, but this doesn’t come to the front. Instead, he carefully engraves the music world of each sonata.’ – Record Geijutsu

VERDI, G.: Ernani [Opera]
Meli • Siri • Frontali • Kowaljow • Tziouvaras • Fiorentino Maggio Musicale Chorus and Orchestra • Conlon

‘…this is a wholly idiomatic reading of the score; no quirky tempos or other eccentricities and the playing of the orchestra is first class. The male voices in the chorus are also excellent – as are the female voices…’ – MusicWeb International

France Romance – DEBUSSY, C. • FAURÉ, G. • RAVEL, M. • SATIE, E. • POULENC, F.
Kotaro Fukuma

‘Kotaro Fukuma zeichnet ein aufgewecktes Bild vom pianistischen Frankreich ab dem ausgehenden 19. Jahrhundert. (Kotaro Fukuma paints a vivid picture of pianistic France from the late 19th century onwards.)’ –

STOPFORD, P.W.J.: Sacred Choral Music
(G. Davidson • Choir of St. Luke’s Chelsea • Chelsea Camerata • Jeffcoat • Summerly)

Philip Stopford is admired in Britain and America for his beautifully crafted music, rooted in the Anglican tradition. His works are memorable and colourful, as these world premiere recordings demonstrate. The biggest piece on this album is the Missa Deus nobiscum, a sacred concert work with a scintillating role for soprano soloist that displays Stopford’s compositional skill, creating a journey rather than a sequence of set piece movements. Elsewhere, in pieces for a variety of locations and occasions, his music is evocative, filmic and vividly celebratory.

REZENDE de ALMEIDA PRADO, J.A.: Violin and Cello Works
Emmanuele Baldini • Rafael Cesario

‘The high level of playing presented here by Emmanuele Baldini, a violinist I had never heard of before, speaks volumes as to the high level of both technique and artistry in modern-day players, and I give him great credit for being broad-minded enough to take on this unusual and often challenging repertoire.’ – The Art Music Lounge

RÓZSA, M.: Overture to a Symphony Concert • Hungarian Serenade • Tripartita
Rheinland-Pfalz State Philharmonic Orchestra • Bühl

‘This is an immensely enjoyable disc… the sheer exuberance and command of orchestral colour channelled into these readings is non-pareil.’ – Classical CD Choice

SCHUBERT, F.: Piano Trios Nos. 1 and 2 • Notturno • Rondo brillant • Arpeggione Sonata
C. and T. Tetzlaff • Vogt

‘Hardly anyone else has looked deeper into the unbelievable abysses of Schubert’s late chamber music masterpieces than Christian Tetzlaff, Tanja Tetzlaff and Lars Vogt. These are Lars Vogt’s last trio recordings, and listening to the way he explores Schubert’s music with an almost shy subtlety and makes it resound, often even blossom joyfully, one can only marvel.’ – ICMA

PROKOFIEV, S.: Alexander Nevsky • Lieutenant Kijé Suite
Carlson • Voketaitis • Saint Louis Symphony Chorus and Orchestra • Slatkin

‘The pairing of these two Prokofiev film-score-derived works is by no means unusual, but it is especially well-done on this re-release, showcasing Slatkin’s skill with interpreting and presenting the material just as neatly as it shows Prokofiev’s in creating the music in the first place.’ –

MOZART, W.A.: Piano Concertos No. 9, ‘Jeunehomme’ and 24
L. Vogt • Orchestre de Chambre de Paris

‘…Lars Vogt’s last recording of Mozart’s Piano Concerti 9 and 24, directed by him from the keyboard, are really special.’ – Doctorjohn Cheaptubeaudio: Audio Reviews and More

DVOŘÁK, A.: String Quartet No. 2 • Bagatelles • Rondo, B. 171
Fine Arts Quartet • Ryoko Morooka • S. Simonian

‘A most satisfying disc full of loving performances.’ – Classical Explorer

BACH, J.S.: Sonatas for Violin and Keyboard, BWV 1014–1019
Sirkka-Liisa Kaakinen-Pilch • Tuija Hakkila

In these new recordings, some of the greatest exponents of Baroque music in the Nordic countries – violinist Sirkka-Liisa Kaakinen-Pilch and keyboardist Tuija Hakkila – join forces. Tuija Hakkila performs on a replica Gottfried Silbermann fortepiano 1747, made by Andrea Restelli. J.S. Bach played one of Silbermann’s fortepianos in 1747 in Potsdam for Frederick the Great and his court musicians.

HAYDN, J.: Complete Concertos (6-Disc Boxed Set)
Cologne Chamber Orchestra • Muller-Bruhl

‘A steal of an album. Steal it!’ – Positive Feedback Online

BRUCKNER, A.: Complete Symphonies (12-Disc Boxed Set)
Georg Tintner

‘It’s a fabulous, fabulous performance and it lasts a good hour and 20 minutes.’ –

20th-Century Middle European Flute Music – BURIAN, E.F. • KRENEK, E. • SCHOENBERG, A.
Luisa Sello • Bruno Canino

These four central-European composers share a history of persecution and emigration but survived the worst excesses of the time. Their works for flute and piano reflect very different aesthetic positions. Schoenberg’s uncompromising Sonata for Flute and Piano is an arrangement of his Wind Quintet, Op. 26 of 1923–24 made a few years later by the Austrian composer Felix Greissle. The Suite by Ernst Křenek is delightfully neo-Classical, whilst the Czech Emil Burian crafted an eloquent, light-hearted work, heard here in its first recording. Paul Dessau’s Guernica was written for piano in 1937 and memorialises the tragedy of that bombed city.

SAINT-SAËNS, C.: Complete Symphonies (3-Disc Boxed Set)
Malmö Symphony Orchestra • Soustrot

‘The conductor is Marc Soustrot, a highly accomplished French musician, specialist in French Romanticism and he puts his heart and soul into these performances. The Swedish orchestra follows him every inch of the way and with HD sound, this set becomes a clear first choice.’ – The WholeNote

SHOSTAKOVICH, D.: Complete Symphonies (11-Disc Boxed Set)
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra • Petrenko

‘My goodness! these are fine, exciting performances… If you’re looking for a single Shostakovich cycle that gives you all the symphonies and performances that really can’t be bettered as a group, as a whole, then Petrenko on Naxos is the way to go.’ –

CHOPIN, F.: Piano Concerto No. 1 • Fantasy on Polish Airs • Andante spianato and Grande
A. Simon • Hamburg Symphony Orchestra • Beissel

‘Although Simon was an exemplary colourist, he makes most interpretive points through lively delineation and clear-cut accents. Heribert Beissel elicits crisp and disciplined support from his orchestra.’ –

Top 10 Audiovisual Releases
CIMAROSA, D.: L’Italiana in Londra (Frankfurt Opera, 2021)
Also available on Blu-ray (NBD0155V)
Vallone • Tognocchi • Lebow • Samoilov • Bintner • Frankfurt Opera and Museum Orchestra • Hussain • Schlather

‘The performances are terrific. …Both the ladies are stylish singers, look terrific and are good actors. Angela Vallone as Livia sings very sweetly but also generates some real emotion. …Bianca Tognocchi as Madama also throws in some coloratura and some quite raunchy acting.’ – operaramblings

SAINT-SAËNS, C.: Samson et Dalila [Opera] (Royal Opera House, 2022)
Also available on Blu-ray (OABD7315D)
Baek • Garanča • Goliński • Malaba • Pingarrón • Sijeqa • Mjandana • Janelidze • Royal Opera House Chorus and Orchestra • Pappano • Jones

‘Garanča is an irresistible Dalila, seductively smooth in submission, steely in command and appealing in between… the Covent Garden choir sing lustily… The ROH orchestra nicely brings out the different moods that characterise the Israelites and their oppressors.’ – British Theatre Guide

PROKOFIEV, S.: Cinderella [Ballet] (Royal Ballet, 2023)
Also available on Blu-ray (OABD7316D)
Nuñez • Muntagirov • Royal Opera House Orchestra • Kessels • Ashton

‘The dancers in this production are excellent, especially Marianela Núñez as Cinderella. …She is graceful and athletic and conveys with her facial expressions and body language all the emotions of the innocent, good-hearted and often forlorn Cinderella.’ – MusicWeb International

WAGNER, R.: Der fliegende Holländer (Sofia National Opera, 2022)
Also available on Blu-ray (DYN-57991)
Marquardt • Rydl • Nikolaeva • Sofia National Opera Ballet, Chorus, and Orchestra • Gergov • Kartaloff

This new staging was praised by and for being ‘a triumph in faithfully presenting Wagner’s opera with an innovative production which was both exciting and created special effects’.

DELIBES, L.: Lakmé [Opera] (Opéra Comique, 2022)
Also available on Blu-ray (NBD0177V)
Devieilhe • Antoun • Degout • Bré • Pygmalion Chorus and Orchestra • Pichon • Pelly

‘…a real plus for this performance is the playing of the orchestra on period instruments, including a listed ophicleide, which lends the whole sound of the opera a rapturous feel under the enthusiastic direction of the lithe Raphaël Pichon.’ – MusicWeb International

LEVAY, S.: Elisabeth [Musical] (Vereinigte Bühnen Wien, 2022)
Also available on Blu-ray (NBD0164V)
Orchester der Vereinigten Bühnen Wien • Römer • Mehmert

Treading a tightrope between death, life and intense romance in the opulent world of 19th-century Habsburg royalty, Elisabeth tells the story of the beautiful Empress of Austria, from her wedding, to her tragic assassination by the hand of the Italian anarchist Luigi Lucheni. Ongoing dark obsessions and inner turmoil are undercurrents as family schisms flare up amidst a crumbling empire. These powerful themes and a potent score brimming with fabulous music have combined to establish Elisabeth as the most successful German-language musical of all time. This spectacular open-air event presents Elisabeth at the fabled empress’s real-life home – Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna.

TCHAIKOVSKY, P.I.: The Nutcracker [Ballet] (Royal Ballet, 2018)
Also available on Blu-ray (OABD7259D)
Nuñez • Muntagirov • O’Sullivan • Sambé • Avis • Royal Opera House Orchestra, Covent Garden • Wordsworth • Wright

‘When it comes to Nutcrackers, there is simply nothing to beat it.’ – The Times

SCHREKER, F.: Der Schatzgräber [Opera] (Deutsche Oper Berlin, 2022)
Also available on Blu-ray (NBD0173V)
Johansson • Strid • Laurenz • Pursio • Pauwels • Mayer • Berlin Deutsche Opera Chorus and Orchestra • Albrecht • Loy

‘Elisabet Strid, a jugendlich-dramatisch soprano of small stature but huge voice and presence, makes a memorable anti-heroine… Marc Albrecht, conducting, revels in Schreker’s vivid, gutsy score, deftly capturing its beauties and brutality – elements which, for Schreker, are so often intertwined.’ – Opera

OFFENBACH, J.: La vie parisienne [Operetta] (Palazzetto Bru Zane, 2021)
Also available on Blu-ray (NBD0163V)
Devos • Briand • Mauillon • Leguérinel • Buendia • Namur Chamber Choir • Les Musiciens du Louvre • Dumas • Lacroix

‘Jodie Devos is the glovemaker Gabrielle, singing like a nightingale and acting with sweet simplicity… Dumas marshals his orchestral and choral forces with panache, instilling a creditable sense of style.’ – Opera

TCHAIKOVSKY, P.I.: The Sleeping Beauty • The Nutcracker • Swan Lake [Ballets] (Royal Ballet, 2015–2017)
Also available on Blu-ray (OABD7249BD)
Royal Ballet, Covent Garden • Royal Opera House Orchestra, Covent Garden • Gruzin • Kessels

‘Osipova was riveting throughout… [Golding] demonstrates real brilliance and prowess.’ – (Swan Lake – The New York Times)

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