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Opera - Verschenen op 29 november 2019 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 4F de Télérama - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Created in 1804 in Vienna before an audience of French officers, none of whom understood any German, Beethoven’s only opera, Leonore, was not successful. Based on a true story which took place during the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution -- the story of an intrepid young woman who dresses up as a man in an attempt to rescue her husband, a victim of arbitrary arrest and imprisoned in a dark cell -- Beethoven took his inspiration from several sources. The story, very in keeping with the troubled times, was indeed put to music in 1798 by the French composer Pierre Gaveaux from a libretto by Nicolas Bouilly, then again a little while later in Italian, in 1804 in a smaller-scale work by Ferdinando Paër. The Italian-German composer Simon Mayr then created a “sentimental farce” in Padua not long after Beethoven’s Leonore. Having dreamed of a tragically utopian level of universal human fraternity his whole life, as well as the image of a couple whose relationship is ideally based on marriage and loyalty, Beethoven had found a story which perfectly corresponded to his own political opinions, formed as a result of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution (before the emergence of Napoleon’s power). We now know that he reworked this lyrical work twice, turning it into the format we know it as today with its new name Fidelio. For René Jacobs, the original 1804 version is preferable to the successive amendments and deletions which were made. And we can’t blame him for this, his new recording highlighting all the beauty and modernity of this unfortunately destined first version of Leonore. In 1804, Beethoven has all his resources at his disposal: it’s the year of the Eroica symphony and the Appassionata sonata. By means of his directorial verve, his acute sense of theatrics and a distinguishably well-chosen cast, René Jacobs does this original version of Leonore justice in all its wonder, with all the delights which Beethoven, worried about being portrayed at the opera, ruthlessly scored from his work. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Concertmuziek - Verschenen op 8 november 2011 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Choc de Classica - Hi-Res Audio
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Concertmuziek - Verschenen op 25 maart 2013 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Hi-Res Audio
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Symfonische muziek - Verschenen op 11 maart 2011 | harmonia mundi

Booklets Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Klassiek - Verschenen op 10 februari 2014 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Hi-Res Audio
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Kamermuziek - Verschenen op 9 februari 2018 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 étoiles de Classica
It was for the occasion of the Covent Garden premiere of his oratorio Joshua in 1748, that Handel composed – or rather arranged – the first of his three Concerti a due cori (« Cori » does not mean here a vocal group, but two instrumental groups – two oboes, two horns, and one bassoon each, a total of ten soloists – answering to each other on the playing grounds provided by the strings), namely the HWV 332. At that time, it was customary to lighten up performances of the largest compositions, especially oratorios, with a sprinkling of instrumental pieces. But as Handel was a busy man and a businessman, and producing so much music so fast was no easy feat. This accounts for the fact that so many of his instrumental pieces are in fact recyclings – transcriptions, reorchestrations, transcriptions, according to what was available and requested – of earlier works, mostly his own, sometimes that of fellow composers – who would not necessarily be informed of the pillage. In the case of Concerto a due cori No. 1, Handel plundered a handful of his own operas and oratorios. The second of Handel's Concerti a due cori, HWV 333, written around the beginning of 1747, was premiered at Covent Garden in 1748 as part of a huge musical banquet, the main course of which was the brand new oratorio Alexander Balus. Here, the composer drew from some of his own English oratorios: Esther and Messiah, the latter still quite unknown. The wind groups take over melodic lines given to singers in the original choral versions of the adapted music. The third Concerto, HWV 334, contains mostly brand new music – yes! – even though the first movement is reworked in part from Handel's so-called Fitzwilliam Overture, for two clarinets and horn, while the concluding Allegro, with its brilliant and difficult horn writing, is a rewrite of a hunting aria from his own opera Partenope. For this recording, the Freiburger Barockorchester has added a twist: each soloist group is accompanied by its own string ensemble, thus creating a higly energetic stereo effect. One orchestra is conducted (from the violin) by Gottfried von der Goltz, the other – also from the Konzertmeister position – by Petra Müllejans. © SM/Qobuz
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Klassiek - Verschenen op 26 juni 2020 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet
A fantasy that turned into a symphony? First and foremost, this double album enshrines the exemplary work of an ensemble whose designation ‘Baroque Orchestra’ by no means limits its excursions into later repertories: under the watchful eye of a gifted conductor, the ‘Freiburgers’ (and co.) offer us a profoundly renewed vision of the Ninth, that myth among myths, that touchstone of a genre in quest of the absolute – and the direct descendant of a much earlier Choral Fantasy. The latter work showcased one of Beethoven's most extraordinary talents: improvisation. Kristian Bezuidenhout has joined forces again with his concerto partners to let us experience this little-known score as if it had just been premiered ... then transcribed by Beethoven himself! © harmonia mundi
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Klassiek - Verschenen op 21 augustus 2020 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet
In their own way Beethoven’s five piano concertos relate a part of their composer’s life. In the previous volume of this complete recording, Kristian Bezuidenhout, Pablo Heras-Casado and the musicians of the Freiburger Barockorchester explored the beginning (Concerto No. 2, a springboard to Viennese fame) and the end (the ‘Emperor’) of the story; they now turn to the most personal of all the Beethoven concertos, the Fourth, which, at a time when the spectre of total deafness threatened his career, shattered the conventions of the genre – as did such orchestral works as Coriolan and the Overture to The Creatures of Prometheus. © harmonia mundi
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Opera - Verschenen op 3 mei 2013 | harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 29 juli 2011 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 13 april 2010 | harmonia mundi

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Opera - Verschenen op 24 maart 2003 | harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 22 december 2004 | harmonia mundi

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Concertmuziek - Verschenen op 26 augustus 1990 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 27 augustus 2009 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 31 augustus 1990 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Symfonische muziek - Verschenen op 17 april 2020 | harmonia mundi

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Symfonische muziek - Verschenen op 4 juni 2002 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 4 december 2020 | harmonia mundi

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Klassiek - Verschenen op 26 augustus 1993 | deutsche harmonia mundi