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Classical - Released May 3, 2011 | PentaTone

Booklet
One of the great benefits of performing Classical and Romantic works in period style is the transformation that lean textures, agile rhythms, and fleet tempos can bring to an overly familiar work. Franz Schubert's Symphony No. 9 in C major, "The Great," is a much-loved classic that almost everybody knows in modern guise, with full orchestral sections, rich colors, and stately pacing. So the idea that a worthwhile performance could be transparent and quite brisk, with reduced forces and a more focused ensemble sound, may seem a bit far-fetched. But Philippe Herreweghe and the Royal Flemish Philharmonic have performed the symphony this way for PentaTone Classics, and the hybrid multichannel SACD is an ear-opener. The tempos may be a bit faster than is comfortable (for instance, Herreweghe takes the first movement at Allegro molto vivace, rather than Allegro ma non troppo), and the orchestra seems pared down, with something of the quality of a chamber orchestra, with the woodwinds predominating. But because of the differences of pacing and clearer instrumental timbres, this is a tremendously exciting rendition, and there's no denying the almost palpable energy of the orchestra. One may quibble with historically informed performance practices, but the results are what matter most, and Herreweghe gets the most out of the music through his methods. No one can complain about Schubert's drawn out repetitions or expanded time scale, because these go by quickly at the fast clip, and the full force of Schubert's expressions are felt in the orchestra's immediacy and clarity. This might not be the version of "The Great" that hide-bound traditionalists would accept, but it is one of the most thrilling recordings of this masterpiece available and not to be missed. © TiVo
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Classical - Released August 7, 2012 | PentaTone

Booklet
After his collection of nine Beethoven symphonies, conductor Philippe Herreweghe tasked himself with a collection of Schubert’s. Released under Pentatone are symphonies n° 6, 8 (incomplete) and 9 (the “Great”). The rest were released under Herreweghe’s label, Phi, in 2015 and 2017. Schubert’s universe, from the early symphonies heavy with the spirit of Haydn and Mozart to the vast pantheistic scores that make up the final two 8th and 9th, certainly suit Herreweghe better than Beethoven. The spirit of the lied which continues to live within Schubert’s orchestra inspires the conductor with most natural phrasing. The architecture is rolled out with great suppleness, and in the eighth, the conductor creates a particularly sombre palette, in a “molten” and silky style that evokes primarily Bruckner, who’s work the conductor is familiar with. An interpretation to rediscover, rich and passionate. © Qobuz
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Classical - Released November 1, 2019 | Sony Classical

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Seventeen years after his first Schubert recording, Arcadi Volodos takes us on another dive into the world of Schubert with the very great and very turbulent Sonata in A Major, D.959. Less than two months before his death, Schubert wrote this penultimate sonata, the most fully-developed in terms of the scope of its final movement. In its crepuscular light, it enfolds the darkness of human solitude in Andantino in F Sharp Minor, which protests against a cheap happiness, first with resignation and then with indignation. Then, a cheering, somersaulting call to life, a most Viennese Scherzo, full of insousiance and serenity, which comes before the final and utterly simple movement, which suffers from no "longueur", however "divine"... Preferring intimacy to ostentation, Arcadi Volodos provides a style of expression which is no less captivating for its sobriety. Going from the most gently-whispered pianissimi to extreme fortissimi, his playing style adapts from moment to moment, a velvet touch that paints unique colours. His interior style of performance, its poetic depth, mixed with the classicism of his approach to the work, all add up to an utterly simple and natural Schubertian language. Returning to the very young Schubert, this inspired recital is rounded off with three rare Minuets (including the stunning D.600, which starts out sounding like an aria by Bach), sculpted with peerless grace and purity: a fitting end to a programme of such high musical quality. © GG/Qobuz
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Classical - Released August 16, 2019 | Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra

Hi-Res Distinctions Diapason d'or / Arte
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Quartets - Released March 2, 2018 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - 5 étoiles de Classica
Franz Schubert's songs sometimes found their way into his instrumental works, perhaps most famously in the fourth movement of the Piano Quintet in A major, D667, "Trout," which was based on Die Forelle, D550; the Wanderer Fantasy in C major, D760, which was inspired by Der Wanderer, D489; and the second movement of the String Quartet No. 14 in D minor, D810, which was based on Der Tod und das Mädchen, D531. Digging a little deeper into Schubert's oeuvre, the Signum Quartett explores less obvious relationships, though no less significant, because the mixing of songs and instrumental works was common at his private concerts for his friends, the Schubertiades. This 2018 release on PentaTone Classics, Aus der ferne, presents a handful of Lieder in arrangements for string quartet by the group's violist, Xandi van Dijk, and two lyrical chamber works, the String Quartet No. 8 in B flat major, D112, and the String Quartet No 13 in A minor, "Rosamunde." Listening to this hybrid SACD doesn't require any special research or careful bar-by-bar analysis, because Schubert's melodies are plainly evident and the Signum Quartett plays with great warmth and a light, lyrical spirit, so the program works exceptionally well as pure music, intriguing as the connections between the songs and the quartets are. © TiVo
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Classical - Released February 7, 2020 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
French pianist Adam Laloum is joining prestigious label harmonia mundi for a new album dedicated to Schubert. The album is an example of this young artist’s attractiveness. Laloum makes his piano sing and offers an intensely melancholic poetic vision with a personal and smooth touch. Lesser known than Schubert’s last three sonatas, the Sonata in G major, D. 894 is one of the few pieces published when the composer was still alive. Schumann saw it as his most perfect work and Liszt loved it. The Sonata in C minor, D. 958 was edited ten years after Schubert’s death. It was composed in the fall of 1928, a few weeks before the musician’s death from syphilis. The piece is infused with Schubert’s doubts, demons and fear of his upcoming death. Adam Laloum wonderfully translates the fraternal spirit of dear Franz Schubert, who almost seems to apologize for the piece’s severity, by adding glimpses of bright recklessness or fatalism. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Solo Piano - Released April 12, 2019 | ECM New Series

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
For a truly great interpretation it’s not enough just to play a historical instrument, the playing also has to be up to scratch. This recording released by the world-renowned label ECM showcases a pianist of the highest calibre playing the wonderful Viennese Brodmann piano. András Schiff captures the convergence of thought and sound remarkably well and seldom before have we been given so much insight into Schubert’s innermost thoughts. The softness and the unmistakable legato that the pianist produces on this Viennese instrument give the Sonatas D. 958 and D. 959 an indescribable feeling of nostalgia. But Schubert’s inward revolt was growing and András Schiff leads us steadily to the edge of the abyss. The crystalline sounds of the Scherzo in the Sonata D. 959 are as enchanting as the sound of ancient harpists who were so often depicted by German Romantics. This exploration into sound is also marvellous in the Impromptus D. 899 and the 3 Klavierstücke D. 946 or “Three Piano Pieces”, which have a very expressive counterpoint that differ from the unfathomable depth of the sonatas. This album is a revelation into a whole new world of sound that is unveiled as András Schiff’s fingers touch the keys. Inspiring. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released October 7, 2014 | PentaTone

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Chamber Music - Released April 24, 2020 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
At the height of mental and physical pain, Schubert wrote Octet in F major in 1824, recalling the Septet, Op. 20 composed by Beethoven at about the same age. Their age gap meant that Beethoven opened the Classical age and Schubert the Romantic age. Schubert was composing his first works while Beethoven already had many masterpieces behind him. Played for the first time during a concert in homage to Beethoven who had just passed away, this marvellous Octet didn’t find its way to an editor at the time. It was found to be too long (62 minutes here, respecting all the repeats!) and was forgotten until its first complete edition in 1861 when it was admired by Brahms. During the String Quintet written four years later, the Octet alternates (as so often happens with Schubert) between moments of Viennese grace and deep melancholy. The Modigliani Quartet give a magnificent performance with experienced musicians including clarinettist Sabine Meyer, who showcases her incredibly expressive playing in the sublime Adagio, a true lullaby opening up to the next world that poor Schubert was awaiting in his early thirties. Bruno Schneider on horn, Dag Jensen on bassoon and Knut Erik Sundquist on double bass complete this ensemble of superb musicians giving Schubert a tender and fraternal humanity. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released April 8, 2016 | Erato - Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Choc de Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Solo Piano - Released March 15, 2019 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Symphonies - Released November 9, 2018 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Exceptional Sound Recording - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Classical - Released March 27, 2020 | La Dolce Volta

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
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Classical - Released October 4, 2019 | CAvi-music

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Chamber Music - Released October 13, 2017 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
Following a first recording on Alpha devoted to Brahms which garnered much praise – ‘real duo playing’ said Gramophone, while Classica discerned ‘shared music making . . . a world full of nuances and subtlety, boundless sonic imagination (Marie-Elisabeth Hecker), playing of rare intelligence (Martin Helmchen)’ and awarded the disc a ‘Choc’ – the duo is reunited. Its new programme features two summits of chamber music: Schubert’s famous Arpeggione Sonata – named after a now obsolete instrument that was a cross between the guitar and the cello – and his no less celebrated Trio no.2 D929, which achieved even greater popularity thanks to Stanley Kubrick’s film Barry Lyndon. In the latter, the duo is joined by an eminent musician with whom they enjoy playing, Antje Weithaas, ‘one of the great violinists of our time’ (Fonoforum) and also one of the teachers most sought after by the young generation. For example, she taught Tobias Feldmann, the young violinist recently signed by Alpha. © Alpha Classics
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Quartets - Released April 21, 2014 | Evidence

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Chamber Music - Released April 27, 2010 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Classical - Released September 11, 2020 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet
A few years after the success of her album crossing Baroque music with folk, "Love I Obey", the Franco-American singer Rosemary Standley visits Schubert, this time with the complicity of the Ensemble Contraste: “We all have a few notes of Schubert buried deep inside us,” say the artists, who have got together around his music and brought it to an original sound texture, the result of their varied influences- classical, pop, jazz, folk. They have picked some of the best-known lieder and universally loved instrumental pieces, incorporating in them rhythms from other countries and instruments unusual in this repertory: the jazz trumpet of Airelle Besson, the guitar of Kevin Seddiki, the percussion of Jean-Luc Di Fraja join forces with the viola of Arnaud Thorette, the piano, cello and double bass of Ensemble Contraste - not forgetting the exceptional participation of the soprano Sandrine Piau, who joins Rosemary Standley for several duets. The arrangements are by Johan Farjot. © Alpha Classics
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Classical - Released January 1, 1979 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released October 16, 2015 | naïve

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or / Arte - 4 étoiles Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Described by the prestigious British music magazine Gramophone as ‘the most innovative and transcendent interpreter of all’ for his work in Rachmaninov and Prokofiev, as well as being capable of a grand refinement and a ‘crystalline beauty’ (The Financial Times) in Mozart and Schubert, Nikolai Luganski is an extraordinarily deep and versatile pianist. His CD recital of sonatas for piano by Rachmaninov won him a Diapason d’or and an ECHO Klassik prize, whilst his recording of the concertos of Grieg and Prokofiev was awarded an ‘Editors Choice’ by Gramophone. His previous recordings were also greeted with many awards, including a second Diapason d’or, the BBC Music Magazine Award, and a prize from ECHO Klassik. Here, he performs one of the ultimate Schubert sonatas, the incredible and titanic Sonata in C minor, which was written in the summer of 1828, a few months before the death of the composer. We hear – and Luganski emphasizes – the resonant impact of the last sonatas by Beethoven, by which Schubert was so fed and freed. The symphonic dimensions of this sonatas require an interpreter with strong shoulders, therefore: enter Luganski. Shortly before this work, Schubert composed his second collection, Impromptus, which hit somewhere between poetry and sombre savagery, as the Russian interpreter endorses here.