LISZT: A Gramophone podcast

Pianist Dejan Lazic explores the genius of the composer and virtuoso. In the latest Gramophone podcast, pianist Dejan Lazic explores the genius of Liszt, from his legacy as a virtuoso soloist to his extraordinary transcriptions of the works of Wagner and Mozart among others. The interview – with Gramophone’s Editor Martin Cullingford – also features […]

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TCHAIKOVSKY: Symphony No 1. The Tempest

  Victoria, Monteverdi, Carter, Boulez and a great deal in between: Pablo Heras-Casado is one of those conductors, not common in any generation, who dine further afield than the meat-and-potatoes repertoire offered by most of his colleagues. The work he does has its place and time. A sense of place in the Winter Daydreams Symphony […]

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BENJAMIN BRITTEN: Biography extract – was the composer’s death caused by syphilis?:

“In the history of art,” observed the philosopher Theodor Adorno mischievously, “late works are the catastrophes.” Not disasters: catastrophes — a spectacular subversion of an artist’s oeuvre, all within the context of a sense of mortality overtaking the individual. The final period is necessarily ruptured from the earlier: carefully sculptured works of youth and maturity make […]

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ANDREW DICKINSON: New Music

From the archives: Andrew Dickinson is a young tenor with a strong stage personality and bold ambition, says Rupert Christiansen. Who is he? An impressively bright and ambitious 28-year-old tenor, Andrew Dickinson is about to sing with Glyndebourne and the Royal Opera.  How did he get here? Dickinson grew up in a suburb of Liverpool […]

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PROKOFIEV: Piano Sonata No 6; Suggestion diabolique, CD review Behzod Abduraimov is still only in his very early twenties but he is a remarkable young pianist, writes Geoffrey Norris.

Saint-Saëns/Liszt/Horowitz: Danse macabre. Liszt: Bénédiction de Dieu dans la solitude; Mephisto Waltz No1. Behzod Abduraimov (piano) Decca 478 3301, £12.99 Mark the name. Behzod Abduraimov, born in Uzbekistan and still only in his very early twenties. He is a remarkable young pianist, and it is well worth getting in on the ground floor with this […]

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VIOLIN CONCERTOS: An introduction to 10 of the greatest with highly recommended recordings

Along with the piano, the violin is the instrument best served with concertos, and what a variety there is! Here’s a violin concerto Top 10 that embraces all the great works at the centre of every violinist’s repertoire ranging from the poise of the Mozart via the red-blooded Romantic works like the Tchaikovsky to the […]

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EMILY DICKINSON: The poet who offers composers potentially limitless possibilities

Philip Clark celebrates the American poet who was a kindred spirit of the composers she has inspired As an intellectual loner, a disrupter of poetic convention, an instinctual progressive, a sensual philosopher, an obstinate believer in the validity and vitality of her own work, a transformer of small-town 19th-century America into impassionedly passionate poetic visions […]

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The completion of the Solti/Wagner Decca Ring cycle in the late ‘60s was something of a Watershed.

Reassuringly Expensive. The Solti Decca Wagner Ring cycle in the big wooden presentation box (Ring 1-22) was like that. In the mid ‘70s it retailed for about £49 – at a time when I earned around £30 a week before tax. There it was, this magnificent edifice – ‘The Greatest Achievement in the History of […]

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AMERICAN SYMPHONY RECORDINGS

In addition to the interesting and sometimes surprising recommendations (Gramophone December 2012) of Peter Dickinson, who is assuredly an expert on American music , I wish to add a few.  Randall Thompson’s Second Symphony (1931), quintessentially American in its rhythms, is best represented by Leonard Bernstein’s Sony recording 60594. On the same recording, with the New York Philharmonic, in the Bernstein […]

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BEETHOVEN: Save us from the tyranny of ‘period instrument’ fanatics. Beethoven belongs on a Steinway

David Oldroyd-Bolt writes as follows: “Early Beethoven belongs to an intimate sound world best evoked these days on period pianos, rather than on a loud Steinway,” declared John Allison in his review of Steven Osborne’s recent Wigmore Hall recital. Much as I admire Mr Allison as a critic, he’s dangerously close to the mindset adopted […]

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PAVAROTTI: His greatest recordings?

An unmistakeable voice, thrilling for its purity and power – here are just a few of Luciano Pavarotti’s finest recordings This article includes links to reviews in the Gramophone Reviews Database, which contains more than 45,000 reviews. To find out more about subscribing to the database, please visit: gramophone.co.uk/subscribe Continues HERE

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In defence of the viola

The viola was the instrument of choice for Mozart, Haydn, Bach, Dvorák and Beethoven; Jimi Hendrix and John Cale both played it; violinists turn to it to improve technique. So why is the viola the butt of jokes? Tabea Zimmermann defends her instrument Please click HERE to continue reading

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Bloch/Dallapiccola/Ligeti: Cello Suites – melancholy vignettes and beautiful melodies

Kate Molleson writes ….. The lone cello has played gateway to many a composer’s soul. Bach and Britten, most famously. Ernest Bloch wrote his three solo cello suites in the 1950s, near the end of his life, and they are fleeting and strange. As performed by Natalie Clein, their small scale is poignant – melancholy […]

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RICHARD STRAUSS: Ariadne auf Naxos – which recording should you buy?

Hugo Shirley listens to the available recordings of Strauss’s opera and recommends his favourite The original Ariadne auf Naxos (1912), a chamber opera appended to a reworking of Molière’s Le bourgeois gentilhomme, was not a success. Reluctantly, Richard Strauss and Hugo von Hofmannsthal decided to embark upon a reworking of their bold experiment. The Molière […]

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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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