From McGill University’s Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (Montreal, Canada) comes a path-breaking project. Performer and musicologist Tom Beghin, Tonmeister and producer Martha de Francisco, and recording engineer Wieslaw Woszczyk apply VIRTUAL ACOUSTICS for the first time to a recording of this magnitude. In the “Immersive Presence” Laboratory, surrounded by a semi-sphere of 24 loudspeakers, Tom Beghin plays “as if” in the historical room. His sounds are captured, mixed with reverberation responses identical to those of the actual location, and retransmitted almost instantaneously through the sphere, allowing him to engage “the room” then and there.
Four Blu-ray audio discs contain hours of music, offered both in 5.0 surround and high-resolution stereo, as well as three hours of HD-video, including a “making of” documentary. Played by one of today’s most thoughtful and eloquent musicians on seven historical keyboards, specially built by four renowned master artisans, some unheard since the days of Haydn, The Virtual Haydn takes you through nine virtual rooms, precisely mapped and recreated from settings in which Haydn’s music would have been played.
MULTICHANNEL DISC OF THE MONTH – Audiophile Audition★★★★★
‘This is extraordinary. Epithets such as ‘landmark’ or ‘ground-breaking’ are often used in the marketing of recordings, but this is one of those truly rare occasions when, in several respects, new ground is being traversed, with importance beyond the repertoire involved… this is as stimulating, sincere, thoughtful, spirited and joyful a traversal of Haydn’s solo keyboard works as you will find anywhere… Tom Beghin simply gives superlative performances.’ – BBC Music Magazine
‘It’s an intriguing set, and fortunately nothing like as gimmicky as the concept may sound!’ – Gramophone
‘For a few glorious minutes, you become Haydn… crowning jewel of the historically informed performance movement’ – La Scena Musicale
‘This revolutionary recording project stands as a tribute to the timeless appeal of a composer whose life and career revolved around similarly experimental interactions with technologies and audiences.’ – Flanders Music Centre