New Podcast: Richard Tognetti on Mozart and Jonny Greenwood

The latest release from Richard Tognetti and the Australian Chamber Orchestra features Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, and Water, a new work by composer and member of Radiohead, Jonny Greenwood. For the lastest Gramophone podcast, Editor Martin Cullingford spoke to the conductor and violinist about the album, which is released by ABC Classics on vinyl in Australia, and […]

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CLAUDIO ABBADO: A celebration

This week on the Gramophone website we are celebrating the career and recordings of the great Italian conductor Claudio Abbado. Among the highlights of Abbado Week are two different guides his finest recordings, a comprehensive overview of Abbado’s career and heartfelt tribute from Gramophone’s Editor-in-Chief James Jolly, and a classic interview with Abbado drawn from […]

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The Best Classical Violin Music

  Aaron Green / ThoughtCo writes: Great classical music for violin is always within arms reach, you just need to know where to look. These classical violin pieces were selected based on melody, popularity, and overall likability. Here’s a list for those of you looking to expand your classical music horizons or for anyone needing […]

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Ask Mr. H: “I love classical music, but I don’t have a real understanding of it in terms of the emotion. I’m not looking to learn about the composers and I don’t want to learn an instrument, but I want to know more about how what moves me moves me. Does that make sense? Can you recommend a book or books?”

Howard Popeck: Certainly. Now forgive me for saying this, but it is possible to over-analyse the wonder of music, the magic and the emotion. It’s a danger, but somehow I sense you aren’t going to fall into the trap. The most wonderful book on the sheer unadulterated joy of classical music without the usual patronising […]

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Ich Habe Genug

J.S Bach wrote his cantata Ich Habe Genug for the Feast of the Purification of Mary to be performed in Leipzig on 2nd February 1727. The work is a retelling of the story of the old man Simeon who, waiting in the temple, was presented with the baby Jesus. As he held the baby in […]

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STRAVINSKY: The Rite of Spring; Firebird Suite (1919 version); Scherzo a la Russe; Tango No. 72 Ivan Fischer conducting The Budapest Festival Orchestra Review By Max Westler

I once thought (wrongly, as it turned out) that basically all versions of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring sounded pretty much the same. Stravinsky had finally done something that all other composers could only dream of: he’d created a piece of music that was conductor-proof. Of course, this didn’t begin to explain why that final chord […]

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SCHUBERT: String Quintet in C, D956, review

Geoffrey Norris writes: Coming in at No 3 behind Beethoven’s Choral Symphony and Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto, Schubert’s C major String Quintet of 1828 has long been a favourite on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs, with 72 guests selecting it as a castaway essential since the programme started in 1942. It is the Adagio […]

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JULIAN BREAM: The Gramophone interview

  We reprint this revealing interview with Julian Bream from January 2007… Sixty years ago, the classical guitar was little more than a musical curiosity in Britain, despite the work of Segovia in Europe – a small-voiced, exotic instrument that wasn’t to be taken seriously. But then a determined Londoner changed everything. Julian Bream’s single-handed […]

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WEBER, MOZART, BEETHOVEN, LISZT & Others: Home Classical Reissue Reviews Nadia Reisenberg, piano – Live Ch. Recitals and Home Solo Performances

Gary Lemco (Audiophile Audition) writes ….. Despite having virtually “retired” from the active concert stage in 1947 in order to fulfill her teaching duties and her parenting role, Nadia Reisenberg (1904-1983) once more commands our attention in a series of chamber (and solo) works organized by her son, producer and commentator Robert Sherman.  With the […]

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Dame Janet Baker: Speaking to Joyce DiDonato

From the archives: An abridged version of this interview was released by Gramophone to celebrate Dame Janet’s 80th birthday on Wednesday (August 21). This fascinating full 30-minute version of the interview covers all aspects of Dame Janet’s career, including what it was like to work with Benjamin Britten and what it feels like to disagree […]

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Debussy/Hosokawa: Etudes CD review – a pianist with an immaculate touch

Between light and shade … pianist Momo Kodama. Photograph: Marco Borggreve Kate Molleson writes … Debussy looked east for inspiration, enthralled by Javanese gamelans and Japanese woodcuts. Toshio Hosokawa, born in Hiroshima in 1955, writes wispy music rooted in the western tradition. Pianist Momo Kodama grew up in Osaka and studied in Paris; her first […]

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Shostakovich: Symphony No 4, review

Vasily Petrenko ensures the proportions and sometimes wild discourse of this symphony are held in perspective, says Geoffrey Norris. The chequered performance history of Shostakovich’s Fourth Symphony has lent it a mystique over and above all the interpretations of what his message – whether public or private – might have been in the other 14 […]

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Why write symphonies?

‘I would like to think we might now be in a phase when composers no longer seek merely to impress with complexity’ Why write symphonies? People often ask me this. They are probably mindful that I’ve spent most of my active life composing for the media. First it was TV commercials – including my music […]

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PHILIP GLASS: Symphony No.9 reviewed by Stephen Mejia

“I have no real foundation on which to discuss the merits or shortcomings of symphonic music—I’m too busy contemplating Drake, Mike Posner, and Nicki Minaj—but I have heard that the Ninth is considered “the cursed” symphony.  I think it begins with Beethoven, who died after completing his Ninth. Mahler, I’ve read, was so disturbed by […]

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Top 10 Baroque Period Composers

Coming in at number one is Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750), one of the best-known of all composers in classical music. Bach was born into one of the great musical families of the day. A natural genius at the keyboard, he mastered the organ and harpsichord and was simply a brilliant composer. Bach brought baroque music […]

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Beethoven Eroica Symphony #3 & #1 – played by the Dresden Philharmonic, Conductor Herbert Kegel

Generally I try to keep my emotions under control. Well, I’m a bloke – right, John? Some emotions emerge from time to time from the mental vault where I store them, usually the blind rage and physical fury variety. A pity, but true. 180 degrees away though, I do feel very strong emotions about music. […]

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The Listening Room: Episode 8

Schumann’s First from San Francisco, a fine new Scriabin Piano Concerto from Oslo and Julia Varady in Wagner. Baroque delights from Califano and Stradella and a few tasty morsels from brand-new releases The symphonic cycle of choice in the past couple of years has not been the Beethovens or the Brahmses (though we’ve had a […]

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