Albums

1855 albums sorted by Date: from newest to oldest
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Chamber Music - Released September 21, 2018 | OnClassical

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Symphonies - Released September 19, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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As early as the 17th century in the days of Fleet Admiral Michiel de Ruyter, one of the initiators of the Netherlands Marine Corps, music has played an important role in the navy. Transforming from ships’ bands and ensembles into a land-based full sized orchestra ashore, the Marine Band turned into the all-round musical ambassador of the Royal Netherlands Navy. From military marching formation, intimate accompanying ensemble, extended big band and classic symphonic wind band to a stunning cover band; no music style is absent from the enormous repertoire. The Marine Band of the Royal Netherlands Navy developed an appreciation for Russia and the music of her great composers. As part of the celebrations of 300 years Peter the Great and the jubilee of the city, concert tours to St. Petersburg were made in 1997 and 2003. In 2009 the branch of the Hermitage in Amsterdam was opened with a concert and attended by Queen Beatrix and President Medvedev. In 2013 the Marine Band and the Drums & Fifes of the Netherlands Marine Corps participated in the famous International Military Music Festival "Spasskaya Tower” on the Red Square in Moscow. © Channel Classics
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Theatre Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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With one of the very best orchestras in the world, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, one of today’s most fascinating conductor, Iván Fischer, offers one of the most beautiful recent interpretations of Mendelssohn’s integral A Midsummer Night's Dream. In other words: first the Overture, the phenomenal stroke of genius of a seventeen-year-old – one can only wonder where he discovered all of these orchestral inventions, as in 1826, templates were still rare and Berlioz had yet to enter the musical scene. Afterwards, the remaining pieces were composed sixteen years later for the theatrical presentation of Shakespeare’s play with musical interludes: thirteen very diverse pieces, ranging from the fabulous Scherzo − a masterpiece of finesse and orchestral invention – to delicious singing moments, as well as a pre-Mahler funeral march (reminiscent of Frère Jacques from Mahler’s Symphony No. 1), the overly well-known wedding march, the grotesque dance, and many more. There is little doubt that this is, if not Mendelssohn’s greatest masterpiece, at least one of his absolute pinnacle works. Presented here in a truly irresistible interpretation. © SM/Qobuz
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Gioachino Rossini is most readily associated with opera overtures than opera -- to whom he was a major contributor -- and to some extent with sacred choral music and piano literature. Perhaps least of all he is recognized as a composer of instrumental and chamber music; while he did not produce an inconsiderable amount in these areas, much of his symphonies, concertante-styled works, and chamber music is early and simply cannot keep their pride of place in comparison with his far mightier operas. Nevertheless, Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra have found much to admire in this neglected area of Rossini's efforts, and have recorded the Super Audio CD Gioacchino Rossini: Instrumental Music for Channel Classics. It includes two opera overtures, from La Scala di Seta and Semiramide, the first of his six String Sonatas in G major, two sets of variations, and a Serenata for rather odd combinations of instruments and finally a fanfare for four horns. The recording quality is strikingly immediate and forward, and the playing crisp and very professional. However, there is a rather bland, formal, and conservative feeling to most of it; the explosive excitement that kicks the disc off with the Overture to La Scala di Seta doesn't take hold and most of the rest comes off like a set of rather polite and uninteresting set pieces. There is a little peak of interest when the Andante, e Tema con Variazioni begins, owing to soloist Ákos Ács' lovely clarinet tone and the unanimity of the wind doublings, though once the piece gets rolling the same sense of ennui returns. It is not Rossini's music that's the issue here; certainly the string sonatas have been recorded as a set numerous times, perhaps most successfully by I Musici. The problem is that while Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra achieve great precision and discipline in this music, they lack inspiration; tempi are sluggish and the sparkle one usually encounters in Rossini's music is reduced to a dull glint. While the basic idea of putting together a program of Rossini's purely instrumental compositions -- and therefore providing an alternative to the mountains of CDs devoted to his opera overtures -- is a good one, as a vehicle for that, Channel Classics' Super Audio CD Gioacchino Rossini: Instrumental Music is simply out of gas.
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Solo Piano - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Sacred Vocal Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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Keyboard Concertos - Released September 7, 2018 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released August 31, 2018 | La Dolce Volta

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Duets - Released August 10, 2018 | Alpha

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Two young Belgian soloists—including Lorenzo Gatto, despite the Italian consonance of the name—have been gathering for several years around Beethoven, and here is their interpretation of three Beethoven sonatas: the First written even before the end of the 18th Century—1798—, followed by the very last that is the Tenth Op. 96 from 1812—created by the infamous Pierre Rode on violin, and the archduke Rudolph of Austria who, incidentally, must have been an amazing pianist—, to finish with one of the most famous ones, the Fifth called “The Spring Sonata” (a name not chosen by the composer). Despite dating “only” from 1801, this sonata is incredibly different from the First regarding its architectural maturity, its intense lyricism and its audacities of all kinds. Gatto, who won the Queen Elisabeth Competition, plays on nothing less than the Stradivarius “Joachim”, while Libeer, a chamber music enthusiast, has a field day on a big concert piano with parallel strings and of an almost orchestral sound. Their first volume, released in 2016, was more than noticed by the critics and the audience—and was a great success on Qobuz. © SM/Qobuz
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Violin Concertos - Released June 22, 2018 | Sony Classical

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While Max Bruch's First Concerto was recorded, re-recorded and over-recorded to the nth degree, we can't say the same of Bruch's very elegant Scottish Fantasy Enter Joshua Bell, the new artistic director of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, both playing the violin and heading up an ensemble to offer us both the Concerto – which he had recorded about thirty years ago with Marriner – and the Fantasy, a discographic first for him. This Fantasy, written in 1880 after the Second Concerto, was Sarasate but first performed by Joachim. The composer weaves it together from an infinitely elegant tissue of themes, and melodic impressions of Scotland, real or imagined. Joshua Bell, of Scottish descent himself, swims like a wild salmon through the clear waters of lochs and highland torrents, while the orchestra, clearly rapt, offers him a beautiful foil. © SM/Qobuz
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Full Operas - Released June 22, 2018 | Warner Classics

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Full Operas - Released June 22, 2018 | Warner Classics

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Mélodies (French) - Released June 22, 2018 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique
Remembering Gounod as just a masterful composer of great French operas, it’s easy to forget that he also wrote, among many various pieces of work, close to one hundred and fifty melodies throughout is long and rich career. Surprisingly, almost one third of these pages were written in English (during his years in London, between 1870 and 1874), about fifteen of them are in Italian, as well as a few in Spanish and German. Most of them of course are in French, among which Tassis Christoyannis and Jeff Cohen selected twenty-four gems, a comprehensive array ranging from his very first published melody – his Où voulez-vous aller from 1839, the year of his Prix de Rome! – to his À une jeune Grecque of the utmost maturity, in 1884. The composer explored all of the styles he held dear, with all the eclecticism he’s famous for: French romanticism, German Lied, orientalism, old-fashioned archaic writing… Gounod was particularly sensitive to the words’ meaning as much as their sound, the back and forth of verses and the variety of periods, and excelled in finding a melodic movement to perfectly fit the inflexions of pronunciation, the expressive flow of speech and setting the perfect phrasing for an eloquent result. With him, unlike his illustrious elder Berlioz, music served the words, carried them and elevated them if possible. Let’s discover this beautiful pearl rosary, made of works we would love to hear in recital more often. © SM/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released June 22, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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While Bartók’s Divertimento for String Orchestra − written in 1939 upon commission by Paul Sacher who provided him with living arrangements in Switzerland – was indeed planned for a string ensemble, Brahms’ 1890 String Quintet No. 2 was initially intended for five soloists, but the Amsterdam Sinfonietta decided to perform it as a chamber orchestra. Undoubtedly their intention was to highlight the orchestral aspect and the richness of the writing, and they did just that masterfully! The juxtaposition of these two masterpieces is no coincidence: Brahms drew influence from “false-Hungarian” music, inherited from the gipsies of Vienna’s cafés and often borrowing from gleaned melodies, while Bartók – at least in the first and last movements – relied on actual Hungarian musical language, although his folklore is for the most part completely imaginary! The second part of this Divertimento is one of the saddest things one could ever imagine, with a slow and unrelenting march filled with heavy harmonies and complaints rising from the very bottom of the soul. It’s worth noting that the Sinfonietta, led by Candida Thompson on the violin, doesn’t hesitate to transform the end of trills in glissandos, and although the partition doesn’t command it, it provides extra lament to the piece. Was Bartók, just a few weeks before World War 2 erupted, letting his sadness run wild about leaving Hungary, Europe, and soon after, life itself? The last movement, although joyful and danceable, almost feels like a headlong rush. © SM/Qobuz