In addition to its own wide-reaching monthly new releases (see www.naxos.com/newreleases.asp), Naxos also distributes several leading labels in many countries around the world. Here is a choice selection of recent releases from some of these distributed labels.
Dacapo is the Danish national label for classical and new music, founded in 1989 and supported by the Danish Arts Foundation. With a focus on Danish composers, Dacapo works to support the Danish music scene and promote its composers abroad.
The label collaborates not only with the best Danish and Nordic artists but also with international top ensembles such as the Vienna Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, the London Sinfonietta and the Kronos Quartet to present releases of the highest quality. As a result, Dacapo’s releases are frequently nominated for the most influential international awards.
Browse Dacapo’s catalogue and subscribe to the label’s YouTube channel to sample its finest releases.
Sørensen’s distinctive music thrives on the intangible, from atmospheres and feelings to memories and dreams. This recording assembles three recent concertos from the Grawemeyer Award-winning composer performed by distinguished Nordic soloists, beginning with a second piano concerto La Mattina played by its dedicatee and inspiration, Leif Ove Andsnes. Sørensen’s clarinet concerto Serenidad for Martin Fröst is inspired by the scents of Spanish poetry, while his Trumpet Concerto for Tine Thing Helseth feeds of his constant obsession with the beauty and vulnerability of Venice. Each is highly evocative and filled with Sørensen’s own etched beauty.
Additional Exciting New Releases and Bestsellers from Dacapo
Dacapo is offering you a FREE DOWNLOAD of Bent Sørensen’s Andante from La Mattina featuring Leif Ove Andsnes and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra. Please scroll down to the end of this page for details.
Seasons of India has captured the essence of Indian life that is infused with the customs and cycles that have shaped generations over millennia. There are regional variations in the timings and precise nature of the seasons, but there are major seasonal festivals celebrated throughout India alongside local customs. Baluji Shrivastav grew up in rural India experiencing first-hand the rhythm of the seasons flavoured by sounds, smells, songs, dances, legends, and poetry. The intense power of nature and her influence on music is encapsulated through the knowledge and imagination of this great multi-instrumentalist virtuoso and composer. It is the reflection of a life dedicated to the rich and boundless beauty of Indian music.
One of the most popular symphonic poems by Richard Strauss is his Thus Spoke Zarathustra , Op. 30. The distinctive theme, followed by timpani blows and powerful, surging chords in the brass, was well-known long before it was used in Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The cumbersome title, along with the fact that the composition tackles Friedrich Nietzsche’s eponymous poetic and philosophical work may even have initially hampered its eventual overwhelming popularity. Strauss’ Burleske for piano and orchestra sounds completely different. In this early work, he attempted to achieve different styles and musical forms. The themes and harmonic progressions of music display the unmistakable influence of Brahms while the structure reveals the influence of Liszt.
The Veil of Pierrette premiered in 1910 as a ballet-pantomime based on a story by Arthur Schnitzler (1862–1931), one of Austria’s most prominent fin-de-siècle figures. Ernst von Dohnányi provided the accompanying score that proved an immediate international success. Movements such as the Wedding Waltz, for example, were frequently heard on radio request shows at the time, giving the equally popular waltz sequence from Richard Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier a run for its money. The pantomime genre was entirely in keeping with the spirit of the age. Following the large-scale, plot-laden ballets of late Romanticism, pantomime explored a more intimate and naturalistic form of expression. This first complete recording of the score enables us to enjoy a fuller picture of the repertoire from this fascinating period of music history.
Joseph Mayseder composed numerous violin pieces and chamber music, and a significant late work, the Mass in E-Flat Major, Op. 64 for mixed choir and orchestra in which he renounced the usual singing solos in favour of the choir. The premiere of the mass took place in 1848 in the Vienna Hofburgkapelle. It was performed from 1875 to 1935 on 49 New Year’s day and therefore was given the nickname New Year’s Mass. Performing musicians in this production include the Vienna Boys Choir, the Men’s Choir of the Vienna State Opera, and members of the Hofmusikkapelle under the direction of the Viennese violinist and conductor Thomas Christian, who also appears as a soloist in the Violin Concerto No. 2, which is also to be heard on this recording.
During the inter-war period, in the cities of the West, a younger generation found ways to enjoy life in the form of dances such as shimmies, foxtrots, tangos and Charlestons: strong rhythms that became a symbol of a carefree and decadent era. The new jazz craze took hold everywhere, and Krenek’s opera Jonny spielt auf became an overnight sensation. The inter-war Zeitgeist in Vienna and the Czech lands is reflected in a programme full of première recordings—many of which were hits in their day—rich with fashionable dynamism, syncopation, and joie de vivre.
This new release features live recordings from the 2019 Alpentöne, a three-day biannual international music festival promoting music associated with the alpine tradition. Alpentöne has no stylistic limitations: contemporary classical music, jazz, folk, pop and miscellaneous forms all form part this unique festival. Performers on this release include Pino Minafra, Alpentone Blasorchester, Ensemble Building Bridge, Andreas Gabriel Ensemble, and more. The artists perform traditional tunes, as well as modern compositions and improvisations.
Die Ruinen von Athen (The Ruins of Athens) was composed to celebrate the opening of the new German theatre in Pest in 1812. Designed to accompany the play of that name by August von Kotzebue, its incidental music is substantial enough to form a kind of one-act Singspiel and is full of attractive arias, duets and choruses and includes the famous Turkish March. Though the work’s theme was rooted in Greek mythology, in reality it was explicitly political in nature, celebrating Pest as ‘the new Athens’. This is the first ever recording of the work with full narration.
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This is where two one-hit-wonders of nineteenth-century Italian operas meet. Mascagni’s Cavalleria rusticana was first performed in Rome in 1890 and Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci in Milan two years later. The subject of Cavalleria rusticana is based on a then very popular peasant tragedy by Giovanni Verga. Pagliacci draws on the play La femme de Tabarin by Catulle Mendès, with the libretto by the composer. Both operas premiered on 29 September 2018 at the Oper Graz with the Grazer Philharmoniker under the direction of Oksana Lyniv.
The second volume in the Witold Lutosławski (1913–1994) symphony cycle by the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and its chief conductor Hannu Lintu brings together two symphonies which belong among the most remarkable symphonic creations of the late 20th century. In his Second and Third Symphonies, Lutosławski lays out the principal foundations of his creative legacy.
The Second Symphony is the most radical of the composer’s four symphonies and takes full use of aleatoric writing. Its symphonic process is built up not of themes and how they evolve but of the dynamics between entire textures, how they meet and contrast. Lutosławski’s Third Symphony is for many the climax among the composer’s symphonies and considered one of the greatest achievements of the symphonies of our time.
Leoš Janáček composed the song cycle The Diary of One Who Disappeared at a time when many people already considered him on a par with the other two masters of Czech national music, Smetana and Dvořák. Although this work is Janáček’s most important original song cycle, his keen interest in the folk songs and dances of his Moravian homeland resulted in a plethora of arrangements, making this music accessible also for the classical concert hall. These include the Six Folksongs Sung by Eva Gabel and the Songs of Detva. The arrangements evince the typically ethnic-sounding music that Janáček refined by adding a sophisticated piano part to adaptations of the existing melody lines, reflecting the tradition of the great song compositions of the 19th century.
Following the 7-disc box set of Gulda’s Stuttgart solo recitals, this instalment features his SWR recordings of piano concertos recorded between 1959 and 1962. Several of these recordings have never been released before such as Mozart’s K. 491, Beethoven’s No. 4, the piano concerto by Haydn, Strauss’ Burleske and the encore by Debussy. These recordings reveal Gulda’s youthful mastery and his equally fresh and exciting interpretations of the classics. His previous SWR release has recently received the ICMA nomination in the Historical Recording category (SWR19081CD).
The Duo Zigiotti Merlante performs mandolin and guitar pieces by Carlo Munier, Enrico Marucelli, and Luigi Mozzani using various vintage instruments suitable to the historical period of the recorded compositions. These three composers were leading figures of the Italian scene between the late 19th and early 20th centuries as virtuoso multi-instrumentalists, mandolinists, teachers, directors, and producers of a great number of works. The mandolin compositions of Enrico Marucelli and Carlo Munier are important exercises in improving techniques and interpretation. Luigi Mozzani, aside from the impressive body of works, was also well-known for making extraordinary guitars. His harp guitars are famous worldwide. His success continued after the celebrated guitarist Andreas Segovia chose a Mozzani standard 6-string guitar for himself.
In Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1, the violin tells its dark story, entering into a vicious circle of ostinato Passacaglia bass lines, losing itself in the loneliness of the extended cadenza and repeatedly falls back into beguilingly beautiful singing. Peter Tchaikovsky initially thought his Symphony of Fate was a failure and believed himself to be at the end of his creative powers. But, the audience’s enthusiasm for the work grew with each performance. This recording of the Fifth Symphony is another milestone in Andris Nelson’s Tchaikovsky cycle with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig.
Death is never far away in Leoš Janáček’s work: in The Cunning Little Vixen, the main character falls under the fire of a hunter, Katia Kabanova kills herself, Emilia Marty in The Makropulos Case has to deal with the hard consequences of eternal youth. From the House of the Dead makes no exception, especially since the composer knew he was living out his final days when he decided to adapt into an opera Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s eponymous novel, a literary work inspired by the time the novelist spent in a Siberian prison. Stage director Frank Castorf, who created a memorable Ring Cycle in Bayreuth for the Wagner Bicentennial in 2013, embraces the aesthetics of the grotesque and absurd suggested by Janáček’s score, and chooses to crudely display, with stark realism, the physical and psychological violence at the heart of the opera.
Hamburg Ballet Director John Neumeier has always been deeply moved by the powerful, majestic, and striking music of Ludwig van Beethoven and for many years has thought about creating a full-length ballet on the music of this iconic artist. With the 2020 Beethoven Jubilee celebrating the 250th anniversary of the birth of the German composer in the offing, Director Neumeier realised that the Hamburg Ballet’s upcoming season provided the perfect opportunity for him to bring his vision of Beethoven’s works to artistic fruition. Many are eagerly anticipating Neumeier’s new ode to Beethoven with the debut of his ballet, Beethoven Project.
Premièred on 21 May 1892 at Milan’s Teatro Dal Verme under the baton of Arturo Toscanini, Pagliacci was an immediate success, and today it remains Leoncavallo’s best-known opera, just as Vesti la giubba is perhaps one of the most famous operatic arias of all time.
The composer drew inspiration from a real incident that had occurred in a Calabrian town, an incident steeped in love and death, which inspired him to write his personal contribution to the new stylistic-aesthetic trend in Italian opera. In the Prologue, Leoncavallo inserted a clear manifesto on verismo (real theatre). His aim was to ‘paint a scene from real life’ and since ‘the artist is a person, […] he should write for the people. Therefore, he took inspiration from real life.’ (connessiallopera.it)
Also available on Blu-ray (DYN-57863) and CD (CDS7863)
This new release is an in-depth portrait of dance superstar Natalia Osipova directed by BAFTA-winning filmmaker Gerry Fox. Force of Nature Natalia follows a season in the life dance superstar Natalia Osipova. With unique access to Natalia’s personal archive, we follow her preparations for a fifth season as a principal of the Royal Ballet as she continues to champion contemporary dance with some of the world’s greatest choreographers. Natalia opens up about her life and history, her childhood in Russia, her time with American Ballet Theatre and her journey to the Opera House. It is an unparalleled opportunity to get up close and personal with the leading ballerina of our generation and understand why critics and audiences all over the world call her a force of nature of the dance world.
Bent Sørensen is one of the most listenable Danish composers of his generation. ‘Sørensen’s music is not recycled; in no way does it rely on the yellowing pages of history for its musical nourishment. His musical language is undeniably of the present day, both aesthetically and technically.’ (Karl Aage Rasmussen).
Download and enjoy Bent Sørensen’s Andante from La Mattina featuring Leif Ove Andsnes and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra conducted by Per Kristian Skalstad!
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