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Classique - Released October 4, 2019 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc Classica de l'année
Like other new virtuosi before him, Lucas Debargue has recorded his own version of a selection of 52 sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti. His affinity with the Italian composer’s particular universe was already revealed in his very first album which showcased four of his sonatas alongside Ravel (a splendid version of Gaspard de la nuit), Liszt and Chopin. The vast corpus of Scarlatti’s 555 sonatas offers an almost infinite amount of inspiration to pianists, with regard to rhythm, as well as to the colour and stylistic approach. Just as we would have expected, the original personality of the French pianist brings a breath of fresh air, sometimes radical, to this delicate music, often bordering on the peculiar. For this new recording from Sony Classical, Lucas Debargue has chosen sonatas which are not often played, and a brand-new instrument, the already legendary 280 VC from the latest generation of the famous Vienna piano-makers Bösendorfer, now entirely owned by the Japanese brand Yamaha. Debargue almost never uses the pedals and has no organological or musicological troubles, claiming to be heavily influenced by Scott Ross’ recordings which he grew up with. Thus Scarlatti’s subtle writing is highlighted with no gimmicks, benefiting from the fine acoustics of the Church of Jesus Christ of Dahlem in Berlin as well as a natural and airy sound recording. The result is a timeless and fascinating vision of this music which walks us through time. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Piano solo - Released September 13, 2019 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Pianist Igor Levit came on the scene with an album devoted to Beethoven's late piano sonatas, works normally not undertaken until a player has had some experience. As if that were not enough, he released a three-CD set featuring Bach's Goldberg Variations, BWV 988, Beethoven's Diabelli Variations, Op. 120, and Frederic Rzewski's The People United Will Never Be Defeated: three giant and challenging variation sets. Seemingly determined to outdo himself, he returned in 2019 with a complete set of Beethoven's sonatas. The four late ones, which made a critical splash, are included here (as played in 2013, not in new versions), and the rest follow somewhat in the pattern you might expect from the earlier album. Levit has said that he admires Artur Schnabel's Beethoven recordings from the 1930s, and indeed he has some of the same go-like-the-wind quality. His combination of fast tempi and graceful phrase shaping works well in many of the early sonatas, although in the Op. 10 set his tempos leave him little room for the marked Presto in the first movement of Op. 10, No. 3. His slow movements are a mixed bag, with the Adagio of the Piano Sonata No. 14 in C sharp minor, Op. 27, No. 2 ("Moonlight"), lacking the evocative moods of some of the others. The first movement of the Piano Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57 ("Appassionata"), takes the forward sweep too far as the important short-short-short-long motif is reduced to decoration. Levit is never less than carefully considered in his phrasing, though, and many movements have a wonderful liveliness. Sample the joyous finale of the Piano Sonata No. 28 in A major, Op. 101, the first adumbration of the almost mystical quality of the late Beethoven. The late sonatas are worth revisiting, especially the masterfully clear Piano Sonata No. 29 in B flat major, Op. 106 ("Hammerklavier"), and the Piano Sonata No. 31 in A major, Op. 110. The collection may be brash in many ways, but it lives up to its ambitions and demands attention.
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Opéra - Released February 14, 2014 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - 4 étoiles Classica - Hi-Res Audio
There are many splendid recordings of Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro that appeal to every taste, but there are relatively few that can be categorized as historically authentic, in the truest sense of the term. Of these, the 2014 Sony release by Teodor Currentzis and Musicaeterna may be the most thoroughly researched and carefully restored version available. Taking pains to consult original sources, and to use period instruments or modern replicas (including a fortepiano, a lute, and even a hurdy-gurdy), Currentzis creates a Classical sound that works brilliantly with the score as written and as Mozart intended, and makes the music as vivid and exciting as possible. Currentzis also has called for a historical approach to singing, and embellishments that were typical of Mozart's day are employed, as well as a more intimate delivery and purer vocal style with less vibrato. The cast may not feature international stars, but the artists are well-suited to Currentzis' goals of presenting Figaro in true period practice. Prominent in this production are Andrei Bondarenko as Count Almaviva, Simone Kermes as the Countess, Fanie Antonelou as Susanna, Mary-Ellen Nesi as Cherubino, and Christian van Horn as Figaro, who give their roles distinctive characterizations along with their impeccable vocal production. Sony's recording is rich in details and close enough to the musicians to give a front-row feeling. Le nozze di Figaro is presented on three CDs in a deluxe hardcover book that includes an interview with the conductor and the complete libretto in English, Italian, German, and French.
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Piano solo - Released April 7, 2017 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or de l'année - Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Award - Gramophone Record of the Month - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Concertos pour violoncelle - Released November 30, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Diapason d'or / Arte - Le Choix de France Musique
Cellist Sol Gabetta and her almost-favourite pianist, Bertrand Chamayou, focus here on Schumann's all too rare repertoire for cello and piano. And once again, none of these pieces are intended a priori for cello, even though the original scores do propose the instrument as a possible alternative to the clarinet in Fantasy Pieces or the horn in Adagio and Allegro. It was only with Five Pieces in Folk Style that Schumann immediately thought of the cello! Here, Chamayou plays on a Viennese fortepiano by Streicher, dated from 1847 - three or four years after the composition of these three works. The Concerto for cello is accompanied by the Basel Chamber Orchestra, who also play on instruments from the romantic era, giving a more hushed yet incisive sound for the attacks. There’s more of an emphasis on the woodwind section as well, in contrast to the over-inflated string ensemble that so many modern orchestras offer up. © SM/Qobuz
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Piano solo - Released October 5, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Pianist Igor Levit moved from Russia to Germany when he was eight, but there's still a lot of Russian in his outlook: an attraction to the pure virtuoso tradition, and a tendency toward big statements and the big questions. Nowhere has this been more true than on Life, an album that succeeds both thematically and as a thrilling embodiment of late-Romantic pianism at its best. The title, and the contents, refer to the album's memorial function: Levit chose the program to honor a close artist friend who died in an accident. The music is monumental enough to live up to its death-haunted theme, rising out of silence in the Fantasia after J.S. Bach of Busoni and continuing with a remarkably sustained mood of soberness and dignity, punctuated by frenetic outbursts. Busoni is one major presence on the program; the other is Liszt, and the two come together in the Busoni transcription of the Fantasy and Fugue on the Chorale Ad nos, ad salutarem undam of Liszt, originally for organ and an impressive virtuoso task on the piano. So the program works well also as a revival of pure late-Romantic pianism: you can easily imagine that Liszt would have loved this, and loved to play it. A third theme interweaving the works on the program is that of reinterpretation, as in the Brahms transcription of the Chaconne from the Bach Partita for solo violin in D minor, BWV 1004; the fact that Levit has played these works in different orderings in recital testifies to the program's remarkable cohesiveness. There is music by Frederic Rzewski in a memorial vein, and Bill Evans' serene Peace Piece is a lovely conclusion. Bravo!
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Concertos pour violoncelle - Released November 30, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica
Looking at the program here, you may not have been aware that Robert Schumann contributed so many works to the cello repertory. He didn't; the two central works were originally written for other instruments and are presented here in versions for cello and piano. Nevertheless, there is no hint of the program being scraped together. This is because Argentine cellist Sol Gabetta has assembled a group of mostly late Schumann works (the Fantasy Pieces, Op. 73, might be called transitional) that aren't terribly common, probably have never been heard together before, and offer all kinds of insight into the late Schumann style that heavily influenced the young Brahms. The contrapuntally dense Konzertstück für Cello und Orchester, Op. 129, generally rendered as Cello concerto in English, was one such work; it's a thorny work that Schumann's contemporaries wouldn't touch, but Brahms would later write concertos that would similarly be accused of not favoring the soloist enough, but that continued to rethink the concerto form. The work gets a fine performance here, influenced by historical-instrument readings, from Gabetta and the Kammerorchester Basel under Gabetta's frequent collaborator Giovanni Antonini. Sample the first movement for an idea of the clarity they bring to Schumann's gnarly textures. Of course, another periodic aspect of the Brahms style was an interest in folk-like melodies, and here that's anticipated by a very rarely heard Schumann work, the Fünf Stücke im Volkston, Op. 102 (Five Pieces in Folk Style). This one is worth the price on its own; the five works move progressively away from folk models, and really the work is unlike anything else in the repertory. The two middle works are played well enough by the cello, and all in all this is a fine, even revelatory Schumann recital even if the cello concerto, recorded two years earlier than the other pieces, seems to inhabit a different sonic world.
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Piano solo - Released September 23, 2016 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année
The French pianist Lucas Debargue was a Tchaikovsky Competition sensation in 2015 (although he did not win), and this studio debut gives you a good idea of what the fuss was about. Debargue offers the French tradition in all its calmly urbane glory. You might like various aspects of this release: the unapologetically pianistic but flawlessly elegant Bach Toccata, the Medtner Sonata in F minor, Op. 5. You might sample one of the movements of the latter, inasmuch as the preponderance of recordings of Medtner's solo piano music tends to favor the thunder and lightning of Marc-André Hamelin, for example. Debargue does not reach such dramatic heights, but there's room for more restrained readings of Medtner. The highlight is the utterly distinctive reading of the Beethoven Piano Sonata in D major, Op. 10, No. 3. This work, with its four-movement plan and expansive themes, is generally taken as an example of how Beethoven was stretching his wings toward his epic style, but Debargue effectively takes it on its own terms, with a playful opening movement and an almost static slow movement that may not be to everyone's taste, but certainly makes something new of this much-played sonata. There's a good deal of intelligence and care shown in the small details throughout, and the recording marks Debargue as a young French artist to watch carefully.
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Classique - Released January 24, 2014 | Sony Classical

Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama
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Classique - Released April 26, 2013 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Hi-Res Audio
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Concertos pour clavier - Released February 23, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - 4 étoiles Classica
For his first album with Sony Classical, Adam Laloum returns to one of his favourite composers. He distinguished himself with his first recording in 2011, for Mirare, which contained four of the composer's major works: Variations on an original theme Op. 21 No. 1, the wonderful and too-little-played Klavierstücke from Op. 76, the two Rhapsodies Op. 79 and the 3 Intermezzi Op. 117. And so it is hardly a surprise that today he is offering up his vision of Brahms's Concertos. Sony Classical has marshalled its formidable resources: one of the best orchestras in Germany, the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin; and one of the young wolves of orchestral conducting from Asia (but already well-known in Europe - witness his many collaborations with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande for Pentatone) join them twice, once in August, then in October 2016, in the Radio Berlin Großer Sendesaal, for sessions which must have been a childhood dream come true for the young Frenchman. An amazing experience! © 2018 Théodore Grantet/Qobuz
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Musique concertante - Released December 14, 2012 | Sony Classical

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica
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Musique symphonique - Released March 5, 2010 | Sony Classical

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Classique - Released April 28, 2017 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica
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Classique - Released January 2, 2015 | Sony Classical

Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica
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Opéra - Released January 6, 2012 | Sony Classical

Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica
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Musique concertante - Released September 11, 2012 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Classique - Released September 4, 2009 | Sony Classical

Distinctions 4F de Télérama - The Unusual Suspects

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