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.
Established in 1978 and celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, Dynamic is an independent record label with offices in Villa Quartara, located on the quiet Righi hill overlooking Genoa.
Its production schedule embraces the entire field of classical music but focuses chiefly on the immense heritage of Italian and European music of the 18th and 19th centuries, especially opera and works for violin. Known all over the world as the first record label to have reappraised Nicolò Paganini, Dynamic has extended its range of interest over the last few years to the field of opera through highly fruitful partnerships with Italian festivals and opera houses; in doing so, it has produced recordings of lesser-known titles by Verdi, Donizetti, Pacini, Massenet, Meyerbeer and Tchaikovsky. Its catalogue boasts over 700 titles, with some 30 new titles being added every year.
Dynamic is today’s leading Italian record label for classical music and has also become one of the foremost European producers of operatic DVDs.
Composed in 1835 to mark the death of Vincenzo Bellini, Donizetti’s Requiem received this 2017 performance to mark the 220th anniversary of the composer’s birth. It is the only modern recording currently available and was made at the 2017 Donizetti Festival in a production by Italy’s Fondazione Donizetti. This release, conducted by Corrado Rovaris, was recorded in the Church of Santa Maria Maggiore in Bergamo, where Donizetti is now buried. The whole cast received very positive reviews, especially tenor Juan Francisco Gatell who sung the famous Ingemisco aria with an excellent use of mezzevoci and coloratura.
The Czech Philharmonic Cimbalom Ensemble originated from a group of orchestra members who share passion for traditional music. The ensemble explores and presents the unique approach of every composer and fuses it with new ideas. This recording includes the ensemble’s arrangements of Brahms’ Hungarian Dances, Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies, Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances, Kodály’s Dances of Galánta, and Sarasate’s Zigeunerweisen. Apart from the exquisite performance of technically demanding compositions, the most appealing element of the Czech Philharmonic Cimbalom Ensemble is their deep understanding of folk music and its specific energy which stems out from the very substance of human existence.
Gustav Mahler wanted his Second Symphony to exceed any known format. He also wanted it to tackle the key questions of existence that also preoccupied him throughout his lifetime. The Second Symphony, also referred to as the Resurrection Symphony, requires vast number of orchestral forces. It might have been a reflection of the imperial era of Kaiser Wilhelm but was also a complete expression of Mahler’s existential struggle. Both its form and its overpowering sound make this utterly clear. Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under its chief conductor Mariss Jansons provides outstanding interpretation of the piece.
This 8-album box set offers a generous selection of recordings by the German conductor, Herbert Kegel (1910–1990). The performances are characterised by Kegel’s painstaking precision in achieving an engaging transparency for the listener. While his slow tempi may be initially surprising, the poetry and clarity he evinces from Beethoven’s scores have rarely been shown to greater advantage. Beethoven’s Triple Concerto and Choral Fantasia, Brahms’s A German Requiem, and a disc of 11 short pieces featuring a range of composers, from Gluck to Grieg, complete the compilation.
Violinist Rachel Barton Pine headlines a groundbreaking album of blues-influenced classical works for violin and piano by the 20th and 21st-century composers of African descent. The album’s title track, Dolores White’s improvisational Blues Dialogues, draws on classical, jazz, and country music, as well as African-American vocalizations and a blues harmonic language. David N. Baker’s gospel-tinged Blues (Deliver My Soul) evokes the ecstatic energy of a Protestant church service. World-premiere recordings include Noel Da Costa’s A Set of Dance Tunes for Solo Violin, Daniel Bernard Roumain’s Filter, Errollyn Wallen’s Woogie Boogie, and Billy Childs’ Incident on Larpenteur Avenue.
In the veritable musical frenzy that struck Rued Langgaard near the end of his life, he composed several violin sonatas – a genre he had not paid much attention to since his early days. In this second in a series of three recordings presenting Langgaard’s complete works for violin and piano, the award-winning violinist Gunvor Sihm and the Langgaard expert Berit Johansen Tange perform the Violin Sonata No. 1, composed in the course of four days when Langgaard was vacationing in Southern Sweden, and Langgaard’s last work for violin, the Andante religioso, in addition to the Sunday Sonata, one of Langgaard’s most bizarre and unpredictable compositions.
The piano pieces here trace a trajectory from the Edwardian poetry of Leo Livens to the overdubbing of Peter Reynolds by way of a century of evocative, descriptive and exciting miniatures. Reflecting pastoral, light and experimental traditions, these previously unrecorded works offer rich variety from neglected composers. English pianist, teacher, and lecturer Duncan Honeybourne presents this new release from Grand Piano. His extensive knowledge of neglected English music makes him an ideal champion of this music.
This set of ‘live’ authorized recordings featuring the highly distinguished conductor Bruno Walter with the BBC Symphony Orchestra comes from the BBC’s annual May Festival, held in London in 1955. This release has been sourced from the Richard Itter archive of ‘live’ recordings. The collection is very important for collectors because it has never been released before onto the market. Following the archive’s launch in October 2017 with releases featuring Beecham, Böhm, Cantelli, Karajan, du Pré, Klemperer and Rostropovich, it has received universal praise from both the classical media and record collectors for the excellent sound and performances.
Music floats effortlessly out of Lar’s mind and body. The music pieces on this album attest to this. Graugaard composed three pieces for this release: Engage and Share, Slonk, and Blind Lemon, which was commissioned by the Spanish ensemble El Grup Instrumental de Valencia. Lars Graugaard is a self-taught composer, and has over 200 compositions to his credit that range from symphonic, chamber, and solo settings, to vocal, performative and multi-media works including three operas, with performances in Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas.
Gustav Mahler was already very close to the afterworld when he finished working on the 9th Symphony. So, the work is permeated by a permanent presentiment of death. At the same time, Mahler’s music vibrates with vital energy, putting the listener in a melancholic, yet optimistic mood simultaneously. The result is a harrowing work with moving passages and violent explosions, mirroring Mahler’s personal drama between life and death. The present recording from the Essen Philharmonie (April 2018) demonstrates this struggle perfectly.
This fruitful collaboration by three eminent chamber musicians, Christian Tetzlaff, Tanja Tetzlaff and Lars Vogt, brings together two Piano Trios by the Czech master, Antonín Dvořák. These two chamber music masterpieces express great emotional depth and dark passion. Piano Trio No. 3 suggests a sorrowful musical expression from his mother’s death, and with its nearly symphonic character, it hints to the world of Johannes Brahms. Piano Trio No. 4 includes folkloric elements with a very unusual structure in its six movements. This intense and intimate work serves as a great climax for Dvořák’s series of piano trios.
This new release features the wilfully diverse compositional and emotional landscape of newly discovered and rediscovered 19th-century Russian music, performed with dedication and delight in the music’s individual detail and perspective. Daniel Müller-Schott ranks among the world’s best cellist and can be heard on all of the foremost international concert stages. “A fearless player with technique to burn” (New York Times), he has made his mark by delighting audiences for two decades.
In the present recording, he plays the Ex Shapiro Matteo Goffriller cello, made in Venice in 1727, and a bow made by FX Tourte of Paris in c. 1820.
Dimitri Ashkenazy and Anton Kholodenko are the soloists in the concert pieces by Carl Maria von Weber and Max Bruch. The concertino is Weber ’s first effort for the clarinet and requires first-rate technical command of the instrument . Bruch ’s Double Concerto, Op. 88 is highly enjoyable music and will be a new addition to most listeners’ knowledge. Dimitri Ashkenazy is an Icelandic clarinettist living in Switzerland. He is the son of pianist and conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy. Ukranian violist Anton Kholodenko is best known for his recordings of J.S. Bach. He leads a busy performing career, both in solo recitals and in chamber ensembles.
During his career, Anders Hagberg has proven his musical prowess as an innovative and virtuoso improviser of flutes in genres like jazz and world music. With this new release, he takes his innovative expression to a new level with cinematic vocals, suggestive grooves and enchanting melodies. T he music on this album originally created in interaction with visual art forms, such as dance, pictures, video, and sculpture. It is the result of Hagberg’s a rtistic research on musical states, tonal spaces constructed by musical modes, focusing on the tone colour in melody playing and the role of silence in musical expression.
The repertoire on this album is rife with symbolism and metaphor that further teases out concepts of impermanence, migration, and the transient nature of musical language. From the wordless vocalises of Takemitsu’s Windhorse depicting Tibetan nomads, to the 12th century polyphony of the Codex Calixtinus sung by pilgrims traveling along the Camino de Santiago, to the dramatic shifts of polyphonic style seen in the 15th century motets of Du Fay and the Turin Codex, to Peter Gilbert’s settings of Japanese waka poetry meditating on the phases of the moon – temporality is a common and unmistakable thread.
This is the fifth instalment of the SWR Classic series dedicated to Hans Rosbaud. It contains nine albums of works by W. A. Mozart – a representative selection of the solo concertos, symphonies, serenades and fortunately also the rarely-recorded concert arias. Rosbaud was an expert at presenting Mozart’s charming and instantaneously fascinating melodies without trivialization and exaggerated sentiment. Discipline, capacity for enthusiasm, precise knowledge of the orchestral instruments and his faithfulness to the works were qualities Hans Rosbaud was enormously admired for.
Steffen Schorn is a saxophonist, composer, and sound researcher, interested in the extreme high and low registers as well as in the textures of his instrument. The SWR recordings from 2000 are for him striking landmarks of his own development. Steffen Schorn is one of the outstanding original musical voices of the German jazz and actual music scene. He has performed in over 70 countries worldwide and established, as a specialist for the low end of the woodwind family, instruments like the bass sax, contralto, and contrabass clarinet, B-Flat and E-Flat Tubax as solo instruments.
The 16th and 17th centuries were important for the development of the transverse flute, during which the instrument became more accurate in its tuning, more powerful in its sound, and more agile in quick passages, so much so that it superseded the recorder and began to compete with the violin, even replacing it in some sonatas or concertos. Virtuoso flutists were undoubtedly a source of inspiration for the composers who produced pieces that became landmarks in the history of music, but it was also thanks to the diffusion of the instrument among amateurs that the transverse flute repertoire was enriched by an extraordinary number of compositions.
Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir salutes its 40th anniversary season with the release of Gloria, a program originally recorded and released by CBC Records in 2008. Ivars Taurins directs the 25-voice choir and the orchestra under Music Director Emerita Jeanne Lamon in this program of sacred baroque works. Soprano Ann Monoyios, countertenor Matthew White, and tenor Colin Ainsworth are the featured vocal soloists. Works in this recording include Gloria in excelsis Deo by J.S. Bach, Vivaldi’s exuberant and joyous Gloria, and Mondonville’s Dominus regnavit.
Internationally recognized organist Jung-A Lee performs an intimate recital on the great Walt Disney Concert Hall organ as a gift to Simon Woods, the new CEO of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and as a token of appreciation in honour of the orchestra’s 100th anniversary season. Jung-A’s infectious and delightful sense of humour infuses her musical performance and repertoire choices. Jung-A Lee has performed in Europe, North America, and Asia as organist, pianist, and conductor. In 2009 she founded Music Mission International to promote organ music.
Bringing together again, for the first time since their premiere, Tchaikovsky’s opera Iolanta and ballet The Nutcracker, was the audacious challenge that Russian stage director Dmitri Tcherniakov accepted for the Palais Garnier in Paris in March 2016: a revolutionary production, which was to become one of the key events of the Paris Opera season. Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva delivers a flamboyant interpretation of the blind princess Iolanta and shares the stage with Polish tenor Arnold Rutkowski and Ukrainian bass Alexander Tsymbalyuk. The internationally renowned French conductor Alain Altinoglu joins forces with the Paris Opera Orchestra and Chorus, while the Paris Opera Ballet revives the most popular ballet of all time.
Celebrating his 75th birthday with a programme of Stravinsky, Hummel and Beethoven, “everything about Mariss Jansons exudes joy and sovereignty,” wrote Süddeutsche Zeitung. This thrilling, varied concert was recorded in January 2018, with Jansons and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra demonstrating the close relationship which has developed between them over the past 18 years. This recording also features a stellar quartet of soloists partnering with one of this fine orchestra, playing under the conductor who, even at 75, continues to inspire them to great artistic heights.
Tutto Verdi sets standards by which all similar projects will be judged. It includes all 26 operas by the greatest Italian stage composer, together with his immortal Requiem, all of them in definitive performances. This impressive set also includes 10-minute introductions to each opera as well as the documentary Verdi’s Backyard, and a 280-page booklet detailing each performance. The Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Regio di Parma shines in each of these productions, as do the world-renowned soloists that include Daniela Dessi, Marcelo Alvarez, Leo Nucci, Fiorenza Cedolins, Irinia Lungu, and many more.
In the wake of the beloved Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky’s untimely passing in November 2017, tributes, memorials, and musical event dedications have flowed non-stop. But none thus far has matched the sheer scope, power, and sonic splendour of this all-Russian performance of Verdi’s blockbuster Requiem Mass. The all-star cast of soloists sings their hearts out for Dmitri, under the baton of the vaunted Maestro Yuri Temirkanov leading the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra and the Bolshoi Theatre Chorus. The result is an incredibly heartfelt and moving musical tribute to one of the greatest baritones who has ever lived.
My! The woods outside Athens are a busy place on this magical night! Four runaway lovers find themselves smack bang in the middle of a dispute between the King and Queen of the fairies, and, if that wasn’t enough, a troupe of amateur actors are trying to rehearse a play. Between these unlikely groups flies Puck, armed only with a wicked sense of humour and a love potion capable of making anyone fall for the first person they set eyes upon. Fusing music dance and some serious comedy, Emma Rice’s first production as Artistic Director brings the Dream crashing into the Globe’s magical setting.
Four internationally celebrated films, first released in cinemas, are now available together on this release. Manet is a fascinating close-up of Manet’s works, a detailed biography, and an exploration of 19th century Paris. The Impressionists and the Man Who Made Them focuses on an exhibition of paintings collected by 19th century Parisian Paul Durand-Ruel . I, Claude Monet is a fresh and intimate cinematic exploration of some of the most loved and iconic scenes in western art. Finally, The Artist’s Garden: American Impressionism is a story closely tied to a desire to preserve nature at a time of rapid urbanization in America.
Dynamic presents the second volume of a series of three releases dedicated to Overtures and Symphonies spanning three centuries of Italian opera. The first volume was dedicated to the 18th-century, while this second features the early 19th-century. The great popularity of Italian Opera in European courts and theatres transformed this music genre, which had first appeared at the beginning of the 17th-century as a court entertainment, into a product of wide international circulation, universally loved. In the wake of its success, other European nations developed a local operatic tradition, but Italian opera kept a predominant role in Europe throughout the entire 19th century.
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