Albums

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Cinema Music - Released June 7, 2019 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

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What a pleasure it is to return to Riccardo Chailly, at the head of the Filarmonica della Scala, with a collection on Rota (1911-1979) and more particularly his songs written for the great films of Fellini such as Amarcord, Huit et Demi, and La Dolce Vita! Before him, another Riccardo, Muti, had dedicated, in the 1990s, two albums with Sony Classical to the film scores of the Italian composer – with one collection on his non-cinematographic corpus. Whether Rota’s music was for cinema or the concert hall was of little importance as he rolled out, to the likes of Bernard Herrmann in the United States, a style that was true to himself where one feels his genius and prowess for evoking ambiance mixed with an incredible dexterity for the most diverse genres, as can be heard in Suite taken here from La Dolce Vita. The beginning (O Venezia, Venaga, Venusia) of the following Il Casanova di Federico Fellini, in which the chiming of the pendulum evokes the tragic destiny of the character and the harmonization of somber colors creates a sea-like atmosphere, remains without a doubt one of the most striking tracks on the album. This ambiance returns in the final part, this time all the more mind-blowing (The Dancing Doll). Often influences from the East, of Chostakovitch and Khachaturian (Il Duca di Württenberg), can be heard along with more meridian styles inherited from Italian symphonists from the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. A passionate album not to be missed. © Pierre-Yves Lascar/Qobuz
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Lieder (German) - Released May 31, 2019 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Qobuzissime
Born in a small Norwegian village in 1987 (and is thus inevitably compared to her long-time compatriot Kirsten Flagstad), soprano Lise Davidsen was almost built to embody Wagnerian and Straussian heroines. For her first record under the label Decca, with whom she has signed an exclusive contract, she has chosen to present several facets of femininity in the vocal stylings of Elisabeth (Tannhäuser), Ariane (Ariane à Naxos) and… Pauline. Pauline being Richard Strauss’ beloved wife to whom he dedicated many Lieder from his opus 27 - the 1894 cycle offered to his wife as a wedding gift - until the last Vier letzte Lieder in 1948.Under the supple baton of Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Philharmonic Orchestra embraces the brassy voice of the Norwegian soprano with finesse and elegance. As you will see, this record, with its carefully devised programme, oscillates between youth and old age, in the presence of ghosts and death. You may wonder how one can express mortality at just 30 years old with such a powerful timbre, radiant health and a whole life ahead of you. The answer lies in Lise Davidsen’s voice, which upsurges as if it were a promise of immortality, the music of the last Strauss piece returning one last time to its past, to a Europe in ruins.Discovered in 1984, after the death of the singer and dedicatee Maria Jeritza, Malven (“The Mallows") is Richard Strauss’ true “last song”. Lighter in tone than the Vier letzte Lieder to which it might have belonged, it is presented here in an orchestration by Wolfgang Rihm. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Mélodies (French) - Released May 24, 2019 | Alpha

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Sandrine Piau invites us for a stroll through the heart of romantic French melody with the musicians of the Concert de la Loge playing on period instruments. Known at the beginning of her career as a prominent performer of Baroque song, Sandrine Piau admits that she was nourished by 19th and 20th-century French music from an early age, at a time when she dreamed of becoming a harpist. Palazzetto Bru Zane are therefore going back to their roots, co-producing this album with the Alpha Classics label. Most of the tracks on this album are real discoveries, like these exquisite mini-works by Massenet, Pierné, Dubois, Godard or Guilmant. And what a wonderful idea to have also slipped the real gem that is Aux étoiles between these melodies, the short night-time instrumental that Henri Duparc wrote in 1910. Almost blind, the composer had dictated the orchestration to the very young Ernest Ansermet, who created it shortly afterwards, conducting the Montreux Kursaal Orchestra. A departure from the usual piano accompaniment, these melodies take on an additional grace and elegance in their orchestral setting, under the subtle and diaphanous direction of Julien Chauvin. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Sacred Vocal Music - Released May 24, 2019 | naïve classique

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Founded in 2018 by the singer Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, a specialist in baroque music and Monteverdi in particular, the ensemble I Gemelli has set itself the task of protecting the great works of the Italian "Seicento" (meaning 17th century), not hesitating to unveil many scores that are as yet still unpublished, waiting deep in the libraries for the musicians who will bring them to life.This is the case for composer Chiara Margarita Cozzolani, to whom the conductor and her ensemble dedicate their first album, with several superb psalms and motets collected here to form an office of “Vêpres à la Vierge” (Vespers to the Virgin). It’s the extraordinary richness of the Italian convents’ archives that has enabled the unearthing of this sensual and delicate music published some thirty years ago after Montevardi’s Vêpres, which seems to have served as a model.A nun, then abbess of the convent of Saint Ragedonde in Milan, Chiara Margarita Cozzolani was born into an upper-class Milanese family. Emiliano Gonzalez Toro’s choice was the collection of the 1650 Salmi a otto voci ("Psalms for 8 voices") and the Concerti sacri, published in 1642. They are connected to each other by an older work, composed by Caterina Assandra, with the text of "Duo Seraphim" already set to music by Monteverdi in his own Vêpres from 1610.Looking to the future, with the use of dissonances reinforcing expression, these psalms and motets alternate between parts for choir and those for soloists, with a voice treatment designed to highlight the talent of the singers of Sainte-Radegonde. A double debut album: the first for the ensemble and the first dedicated to this composer whose talent demands our full attention, just like her contemporaries Cavalli, Strozzi or Benedetto Ferrari. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released May 17, 2019 | Ramée

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No eighteenth-century composer was so adept at so many musical styles as Georg Philipp Telemann. Telemann's versatility and inventiveness kept his musical style avant-garde during his entire life. He was not only praised by his contemporaries but was highly respected by the next generation: his fame was immense. Thererfore New Collegium, one of the promising ensembles of the younger generation, has chosen for their first studio recording on the Ramée label to show Telemann the chameleon, the breadth of his musical palette. Some of the pieces will undoubtedly sound familiar; others, such as the Italianate Trio for violin and cello obbligato, or the pastoral Trio for two violins in scordatura, will surely be delightful, new surprises for many. Coming in and out of disguise with Telemann’s chameleonic notes we often find ourselves wondering: is this truly music by just one composer, not six? © Ramée
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Classical - Released May 10, 2019 | Alpha

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2019 will see the 500th commemoration of the death of one of the greatest geniuses humanity has produced: Leonardo da Vinci, scientist, inventor, painter – and musician. Doulce Mémoire, having devoted themselves to Renaissance music for the past 30 years, have decided to pay homage to Leonardo. Their founder-director, Denis Raisin Dadre, an eminent specialist in the music of the period and a great lover of pictorial art, has devised an original programme: ‘Rather than just make music from the time of Leonardo, I’ve taken my cue from the paintings themselves. I’ve worked on what could be the hidden music of these pictures, what musical pieces might be suggested by them….’ He chose around fifteen paintings, many of which are now in the Louvre: The Baptism of Christ, The Virgin of the Rocks, Portrait of Isabella d’Este, Portrait of an Unknown Woman (La belle ferronnière), Saint Anne, St. John the Baptist… and of course La Gioconda. He then matched them with works by Jacob Obrecht (1457-1505), Josquin Desprez (1450-1521), laude for the Annunciation. There are also some frotolle, and songs to texts by Petrarch accompanied by the lira da braccio, an instrument Leonardo played himself. This recording comes with a handsome booklet, including reproductions of the pictures by Leonardo, some in detail, giving an intimate insight into them; there is also a text by Denis Raisin Dadre explaining his selection. © Alpha Classics
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Classical - Released May 3, 2019 | Alpha

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‘The senses reign, and Reason now is dead’ (Petrarch). Giovanni Antonini, flautist and founder of the legendary Italian ensemble Il Giardino Armonico, enjoys musical voyages, the discursiveness of music. He begins with an anonymous 16th century pavane, La Morte della Ragione ("The Death of Reason"), which he believes refers to In Praise of Folly, in which its author Erasmus distinguishes between two forms of madness: ‘a sweet illusion of the spirit', and a negative form, ‘one that the vengeful Furies conjure up from hell...’. This succession of ‘musical pictures’ leads us to the threshold of the baroque era, starting out with the Puzzle Canon by John Dunstable (1390- ca.1453), whose manuscript is an enigma, via the ‘bizarre’ style of Alexander Agricola (1446- ca.1506) and his obsessive, ostinato rhythm – almost an anticipation of minimalist music… to the improvisatory freedom of the Galliard Battaglia de Scheidt (1587-1654), a battle piece involving a great many diminutions or ‘divisions’, a common technique of improvisation in the Renaissance... This grand instrumental musical fresco of time and space is a kind of self-portrait of Giovanni Antonini and his longstanding musical colleagues. To accompany this recording, a richly-illustrated booklet presents a free-ranging iconographical tour combining pictures and contemporary photos. © Alpha Classics
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Symphonies - Released May 3, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Chamber Music - Released May 3, 2019 | Glossa

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Popular madrigals and chansons of the 16th century served as models for richly embellished “alla bastarda” versions on the viola da gamba. In this recording, the vocal originals are presented together with the extremely virtuoso instrumental versions which represent the first and hardly surpassed apex of solo literature for viola da gamba. For 25 years, Paolo Pandolfo has been one of the leading viola da gambists of his generation, researching and promoting the repertoire of his instruments in all directions. The thorough knowledge of all aspects of the viola da gamba repertoire becomes clear in his extensive discography. Not only has he recorded the most important works of the viol literature, but also very personal musical statements in which he combined the youthful experiences as a double bass player and guitarist with compositions and improvisations that are just as influenced by jazz as they are by the historical repertoire. With the “bastarda” diminutions, he now proffers an early milestone of the solo viol literature in which the exuberant virtuosity serves to present enchantingly beautiful music. On this very special project, with instruments built ad hoc, he is joined by some of the finest continuo players of the early music scene (Boysen, Granata, Chemin, Pedrini) and the exquisite vocal ensemble La Pedrina, together producing what definitely will be considered as a key recording of repertoire for the viola da gamba. © Glossa
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Quartets - Released April 26, 2019 | Alpha

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Formed in 1994 at the Royal College of Music in London, the Belcea Quartet already has an impressive discography, including the complete Beethoven string quartets. For this new recording, the ensemble has chosen three quartets by two iconic composers of the 20th century: Leos Janáček and György Ligeti. Fifteen years after their first recording for Zig-Zag, and after some changes in personnel, they have decided to record again the two string quartets by Janáček. The First Quartet was inspired by Leon Tolstoy’s famous novella, The Kreutzer Sonata: the four-movement work follows the narrative, including its culminating murder. The Second Quartet is subtitled Intimate Letters, in homage to Kamila Stösslova, with whom the composer had an important relationship expressed through letters, one that influenced both his life and his music. Finally, the First Quartet by Ligeti, subtitled Métamorphoses nocturnes because of its particular form. The composer described the work as a sort of theme and variations, but not with a specific theme that is then subsequently varied: rather, it is a single musical thought appearing under constantly new guises – for this reason the word ‘metamophoses’ is more appropriate than ‘variations’. © Alpha Classics
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Keyboard Concertos - Released April 19, 2019 | harmonia mundi

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Sacred Oratorios - Released April 12, 2019 | harmonia mundi

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Duets - Released April 12, 2019 | La Musica

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Classical - Released August 5, 2011 | Warner Classics

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Symphonies - Released April 5, 2019 | Sony Classical

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Full Operas - Released April 5, 2019 | CapriccioNR

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Masses, Passions, Requiems - Released March 29, 2019 | Les Indispensables de Diapason

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Chamber Music - Released March 22, 2019 | Aparté

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Vlado Perlemuter and Jean Hubeau’s pupil, Michel Dalberto has established himself during a forty year career as a master. And as an ardent defender of French music he launched on Aparté a series dedicated to Debussy, Fauré, Franck and Ravel. “With these recordings of works of four major French composers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, I wish to prove myself worthy of the teachers who used to provide a specific idea of French music made of severity and sensuality, a mixture of rigour and freedom.” After a first opus devoted to Debussy and a second to Fauré (both rewarded with international awards), Michel Dalberto chose the Salle Philharmonique in Liège to record the third part of this collection – that is to say in César Franck’s home town. © Aparté
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Chamber Music - Released March 22, 2019 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released March 22, 2019 | Warner Classics

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