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Qobuz’s experts gather all the essentials of each genre. These albums have marked music history and become major landmarks.

With the Ideal Discography you (re)discover legendary recordings, all whilst building on your musical knowledge.

Albums

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Bach: Concertos for 2, 3 & 4 Harpsichords, BWV 1060 - 1065

Gustav Leonhardt

Classical - Released January 28, 2022 | Warner Classics

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Händel: Suites pour clavecin

Pierre Hantaï

Classical - Released November 20, 2020 | Mirare

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The new album from Pierre Hantaï, who is momentarily moving away from his dear Scarlatti, is a veritable gem! The French harpsichordist opens this masterful recital recorded in January 2020 in Haarlem (Netherlands) by Nicolas Bartholomée's team and dedicated to four suites by Georg Friedrich Haendel through one of the least known, HWV 426, the first issue of Book I of 1720. Immediately, his fingers immerse this eclectic, cosmopolitan world, where neighbouring Italy and France collide seamlessly, in a resplendent sunshine. Once again, the phrasing dazzles as much as the science that the worthy heir of Gustav Leonhardt displays in grasping the diversity of character as he does in painting landscapes in changing light.Here, the Suite in F major, HWV 427 is a miracle. It is a moving, opening Adagio, with an unheard-of melancholy fullness, in which the "art of touching the harpsichord", of singing, of making polyphony shine, is carried high. So much so that the perpetual movement of the Allegro that follows may initially startle you, Pierre Hantaï's metrical regularity is astonishing, even in the more ornate repeats. However, the lines never seem tight, which makes you look at the choreography, undoubtedly reproducing the outlines of an imaginary Gavotte: an unforgettable sensation! The second Adagio is a sort of prelude, before a bugle fugue, not so distant here from the most joyful fugues of J. S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier.The focus of the recital is the spacious and rather sombre Suite in D minor, HWV 428; at first the traditional Präludium, Allemande, Courante, then suddenly, a long Air whose theme is tenderly unfolded, morphing into a strange world of "harmonic" ramblings, as if improvised, launched like rockets by the harpsichordist - a work in its own right!On all levels, an enthralling recital, to be treasured, which will give many people the opportunity to enjoy Handel's Harpsichord Suites once again. © Pierre-Yves Lascar/Qobuz
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Walton: Symphony No.1 in B-Flat Minor

André Previn

Symphonies - Released November 16, 2018 | RCA Victor

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This is an absolute MUST LISTEN. One of André Previn’s greatest recordings captured in the 1960s in London – truly a golden era for the American conductor! Here, the London Symphony Orchestra, galvanised and operating in the very heart of its repertoire, is at its most beautiful: the brass section is electric (listen to the Scherzo!), the woodwinds are poetic and the strings unrelenting in their rhythmicity... What sets this recording apart from any other are the very fast tempos, always kept within bounds by André Previn, that help unveil Walton’s great architectural sense in the most unique way – check out the magnificent coda of the initial Allegro assai; throughout this interpretation, Sibelius and Hindemith influences progressively fade away in favour of a truly distinctive orchestration and management of musical time that make this score what it really is: a real oddity in the British musical landscape of the 1930s. André Previn’s performance on the 26th and 27th of August 1966 – he went on to create a new version with the RPO for Telarc − is all the more striking when we consider that around the same time, with the same musicians, he was working on the complete symphonies of Ralph Vaughan Williams which lack in poetry, most probably suffering from the type of analytical frankness that actually exalts Walton’s Symphony No.1. A few years later, he also recorded Walton’s Symphony No.2 for EMI, again with the LSO. This can be enjoyed with wonderful sound recording by the Decca team, conducted here by James Lock. © Pierre-Yves Lascar
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A Bach Recital (Mono recording)

Wilhelm Kempff

Classical - Released August 17, 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

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Mascagni: Cavalleria rusticana / Leoncavallo: Pagliacci

Herbert von Karajan

Opera - Released May 11, 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Bartók: Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Sz. 106 - Hindemith: Concert Music for String Orchestra and Brass, Op. 50

Leonard Bernstein

Classical - Released March 2, 2018 | Sony Classical

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Copland: Appalachian Spring, El Salón México & Music for the Theatre

Leonard Bernstein

Classical - Released November 24, 2017 | Sony Classical

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This well-known monographic album devoted to Aaron Copland is also a joyful symbol of the long friendship that united a young, nineteen-year-old Bernstein with one of the greatest American composers. The two men, separated by an age difference of eighteen years, met on campus at Harvard during a modern dance show. While Copland was already a well-respected composer, Leonard Bernstein remained a complete unknown, full of talents and projects. The elder helped the young musician by recommending him to the Curtis Institute, and then the Tanglewood Music Festival. Grateful, Bernstein played Copland’s music his whole life out of affection as well as genuine passion. Released in 1962, this LP features three ballets. Appalachian Spring, composed in 1944 for Martha Graham, tells the story of American pioneers by citing numerous folk songs of that time, including Shaker Dance that acts as a link between the eight movements of the piece. El Salón Mexico, originally a purely orchestral piece, is the idealised representation of a Mexican folk-song salon, even if the influence of Stravinsky is clear. Based on scores bought in situ by the composer, several styles of music shine through, from the most popular to the most academic. Music for the Theater, composed in 1925, is a string of small pieces inspired by jazz music that caused quite a scandal in conservative concert halls in the 1920s! © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Copland: Rodeo & Billy the Kid

Leonard Bernstein

Classical - Released November 24, 2017 | Sony Classical

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Mozart : Don Giovanni (2016 Remastered)

Carlo Maria Giulini

Full Operas - Released January 1, 1992 | Warner Classics

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' This set... put into the hands of those who have not yet unlocked the paradise of Mozartean opera, is worth... what ? A year at a foreign university ? I don't believe I exaggerate.' (Gramophone)
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Verdi : Il Trovatore (Remastered)

Zubin Mehta

Classical - Released July 28, 1998 | Sony Classical

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Unquestionably a jewel in the crown of the discography: incandescent and inspired conducting from start to finish (under the baton of Zubin Mehta, not the only example), and great voices of the time, sumptuous and committed — Leontyne Price, Fiorenza Cossotto, Sherrill Milnes and Placido Domingo. A fascinating and burning work is answered by an interpretation of flesh, fire and ashes to be counted in the leading pack of Trovatori in the catalog. (Qobuz/GG) 
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Puccini : Tosca (Remastered)

Zubin Mehta

Classical - Released January 1, 1973 | Sony Classical

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In unison with Zubin Mehta's inspired direction, where dramatic intensity and tenderness contrast, the cast is excellent, especially the three leading roles : Leontyne Price for her vocal quality and commitment to the limits, Domingo at the top of his voice, true and nuanced, and magnificent baritone Sherrill Milnes. A very lively and vibrant performance of the highest standard, probably the best in the entire discography. (Qobuz)
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Brahms: Violin Concerto

Itzhak Perlman

Classical - Released September 25, 2015 | Warner Classics

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Bach: The Goldberg Variations (1981) - Gould Remastered

Glenn Gould

Solo Piano - Released September 11, 2015 | Sony Classical

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Vivaldi : 12 Violin Concertos - "La Cetra", Op. 9

Holland Baroque

Classical - Released July 3, 2015 | Channel Classics Records

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Schumann: Genoveva

Kurt Masur

Opera - Released May 1, 2015 | Brilliant Classics

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Grieg: Lyric Pieces

Emil Gilels

Classical - Released January 1, 1974 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No.3 / Ravel: Piano Concerto In G Major

Martha Argerich

Classical - Released January 1, 1967 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Tchaikovsky: Symphonies Nos.4, 5 & 6 "Pathetique"

Evgeny Mravinsky

Classical - Released April 7, 2015 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker

Antal Doráti

Classical - Released January 1, 1991 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

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Séverac: Cerdaña, En Languedoc & Les Naïades et le Faune indiscret

Françoise Thinat

Classical - Released November 9, 2014 | Tessitures - Satine

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This is a real marvel! Listen to this album, a darling of discophiles, a work that reminds us that Déodat de Séverac (1872-1921) was one of the forgotten masters of 'French' music at the beginning of the 20th century, rather like Gabriel Dupont (1878-1914), who also died too soon. Françoise Thinat, founder of the Orléans International Piano Competition and professor at the École normale de musique de Paris, gives this music a generous, sensual treatment, that recalls Gabriel Fauré and Isaac Albéniz. She uses unusually broad phrasing in Les muletiers devant le Christ de Llivia, the fourth piece in Cerdaña's collection, and in Coin de cimetière, au printemps from the suite En Languedoc where the precision of the recordings, the ample and expressive gestures, the supremely elegant rendition of the material, leave a lasting impression. This must surely be the best way to discover Déodat de Séverac, ranking far ahead of Aldo Ciccolini, Jean-Joël Barbier or the most recent François-Michel Rignol. © Pierre-Yves Lascar / Qobuz