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Classical - To be released April 2, 2021 | Mirare

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Classical - Released January 15, 2021 | Mirare

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Classical - Released January 8, 2021 | Mirare

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On the occasion of the recording of Pierre Boulez's Anthiphonie, Florent Boffard brought together three composers around the sonata, an emblematic musical form. A robust architecture in Beethoven's work, it becomes, through its confrontation with Boulezian modernity, an open and multiple form. The bringing together of the three universes highlights the timeless power of the musical word, when genius imposes its style. © Mirare
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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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Classical - Released November 13, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released November 13, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released November 6, 2020 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
The musicians of Les Ombres pay tribute to Luigi Boccherini. The free and audacious composer was an insatiable traveler and the inventor of the string quartet whose belatedly acknowledged genius has now earned him a major place in the history of music. © Mirare
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Classical - Released November 6, 2020 | Mirare

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Three young musicians playing three young composers’ trios with piano. It’s Trio Zeliha’s debut album and it’s a masterpiece. Violinist Manon Galy, cellist Maxime Quenesson and pianist Jorge González Buajasan all have plenty of experience playing the grand masters’ works, both solo and in trio. They’ve also received encouragement and endorsements from the great Menahem Pressler. There’s a great deal of talent between them and their strong personalities complement and bounce off one another.Shostakovich composed Piano Trio No. 1 in C Minor in 1923 when he was 17 years old. You can already hear his signature style coming through with his sarcastic, abrasive harmonies. He reused one of the themes the following year in First Symphony, never turning his back on his early works. Known for his famous – and somewhat overplayed – waltzes, Anton Arensky’s personality really shines through in Trio in D minor. The work was written in 1894 in remembrance of the cellist Karl Davidov who founded the Russian cello school, much like Tchaikovsky had done a few years earlier when he composed a memorial trio for his friend and mentor Nicolai Rubinstein. Arensky’s long beautiful trio depicts the life of his late friend with an expressiveness that the three young musicians take to new heights.Mendelssohn also uses the D minor key in his First Trio. Though instead of communicating tragedy, it conveys a wildly romantic appetite for life. The Trio Zeliha add light and dark shades to this frenzy while never losing sight of form and elegance. In addition to the three amazing musicians, the quality of the sound recording is worth mentioning. With a tasteful texture and a spicy flavour, it does absolute justice to the youthful enthusiasm of the works and their performers. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released October 2, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released October 2, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released September 25, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released September 11, 2020 | Mirare

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Although best-known as a composer of orchestral and operatic music, Georges Bizet (1838-1875) was also a virtuoso of the piano, for which he left a number of first-rate works. This recording assembles several of his piano pieces and transcriptions alongside arrangements of his works by other composers. This music "without words", whether inspired by the art of his contemporaries, Romantic Germany, the Orient and Venetian gondolas, reveals all the subtlety of his style and his melodies for the nineteenth-century king of instruments. © Mirare
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Classical - Released August 28, 2020 | Mirare

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Isaac Albéniz's Suite Iberia took the composer some four years to complete, finishing it only shortly before his death. Consisting of 12 dance movements spread across four "notebooks", Iberia is a work culminating a career of capturing the essence of Spanish music and folklore. Successful performance of the suite relies on the performer having an innate and unwavering understanding of the Spanish musical idiom, exquisite detail, and nuance of ornamentation, and the ability to savor every note and every chord. Spanish-born pianist Luis Fernando Perez is certainly up to this challenge, having received the majority of his early training in his homeland. Perez's technical acumen cannot be faulted, and his steadfast adherence to the original score is quite laudable. From a musical standpoint, Perez's performance is equally satisfying. His pacing is spacious and leisurely; he plays with panache and ease throughout, brilliantly capturing the dance characteristics of each of the 12 movements. The most notable quality Perez lacks that one of his mentors - Alicia de Larrocha - possessed in abundance is a rich, warm sound. His instrument at times seems too clean, too edgy. A bit more resonance and depth, particularly in the lower half of the instrument, would be beneficial. © TiVo
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Classical - Released July 31, 2020 | Mirare

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Classical - Released June 5, 2020 | Mirare

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Chopin was an absolute master of “small forms” (preludes, ballads, nocturnes, mazurkas, impromptus, études, polonaises), which often overshadowed his larger works such as the three piano sonatas and the sonata for cello and piano which are brilliant but are often criticised for being disparate pieces strung together. Yet, upon closer examination, many musicologists have found that these works are carefully structured and as accomplished as the classical models established by Haydn and Beethoven.In this recital for Mirare, the Russian-Lithuanian pianist Lukas Geniušas has once again set his sights on Chopin after his interpretation of Chopin’s twenty-four Etudes (for Dux Records) in 2013 was highly praised. Two years later, the release of his monographic album dedicated to the Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor and the Concerto in E minor by the Chopin Institute in Warsaw (Narodowy Instytut Fryderyka Chopin), was once again a success.Having studied at the Moscow Frederic Chopin College of Music Performing, the brilliant young Lukas Geniušas now remains loyal to his favourite composer. He leads up to Sonata No. 3 by playing a mix of eleven Mazurkas, like walking down an impressive avenue of lime trees leading to a stately home. His great technique and remarkable sensitivity allow him to pick up on even the most subtle and delicate details of Chopin’s music. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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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 17, 2020 | Mirare

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Having become a film star (played by actor Jean-Pierre Marielle, who was passionate about music), Monsieur de Saint Colombe comes to us here from the comfort of his own home where he gave concerts which proved very popular with amateur musicians as well as his two daughters. His repertoire mainly consisted of dances, namely stylised dances intended for “the personal and tranquil enjoyment” of enlightened listeners. These dances were composed in suites from the middle of the 17th century onwards and follow on from one another in an order that was gradually established over time, from the most dignified or the noblest (and slowest) to the liveliest. Not only was Jean de Sainte-Colombe admired for the grace and stability of his left-hand technique, but also for his use of silver-spun strings which were very much in vogue in France at the time and added a prestigious aesthetic to his music. He was widely praised for his beautiful playing and his way of reaching chords with beautiful dissonances that lifted the spirits of his learned and cultured audience. Philippe Pierlot (primary artist, bass viol), Lucile Boulanger (bass viol) and Myriam Rignol (bass viol) invite us into this mysterious and sophisticated world on this album, with a collaboration from Rolf Lislevand on theorbo for two of the pieces. Playing excerpts from his Pieces in D, in G and in C, it becomes clear why the composer was hailed by many during the era of Louis XIV as the “Orpheus of his age”; a legendary musician in ancient Greek mythology. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released April 17, 2020 | Mirare

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Clarinetist Raphaël Sévère and pianist Paul Montag explain that their On Tour album, although not recorded live, consists of pieces they feel they have performed especially successfully in concert. The title could be taken another way, though, and this points to why their program holds together unusually well. All of the music (at least if one is willing to provisionally accept jazz as a folk form) is rooted in folk idioms in one way or another, and the musicians conduct a "tour" not only of the folk music of different regions but of the uses of folk traditions in 20th century concert music. The opening Dance Preludes of Lutoslawski may be worth the price of admission in themselves; performers in recent years have finally gotten past Lutoslawski's disparagement of his early Bartók-influenced pieces, and Sévère and Montag nicely catch the varying treatment of folk dances here. The Clarinet Sonata of Francis Poulenc, written for jazz clarinetist Benny Goodman and premiered by him and Leonard Bernstein on the piano in 1963, was among Poulenc's last works, and it's an elegant, underrated work. Bernstein is represented by his Clarinet Sonata of 1942, a Bartókian piece that suggests the Latin American influences to come in Bernstein's output. Bartók's Romanian Folk Dances, Sz. 56, are briskly dispatched, and another major attraction is the pair of Hungarian-flavored works by Leo Weiner, not derivative of Bartók and very rarely heard. The program closes with a two-movement work by Sévère with links to the Bernstein sonata, suggesting that the tradition of folk-based concert music is alive and well. A highly listenable clarinet-and-piano recital that is also rigorously put together. © TiVo
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Classical - Released February 14, 2020 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Classical - Released February 14, 2020 | Mirare

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