Philadelphia Orchestra – Gala (1958)

FrontCover1The Philadelphia Orchestra (founded in 1900 !) is an American symphony orchestra, based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. One of the “Big Five” American orchestras, the orchestra is based at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, where it performs its subscription concerts, numbering over 130 annually, in Verizon Hall.

From its founding until 2001, the Philadelphia Orchestra gave its concerts at the Academy of Music. The orchestra continues to own the Academy, and returns there one week per year for the Academy of Music’s annual gala concert and concerts for school children. The Philadelphia Orchestra’s summer home is the Mann Center for the Performing Arts. It also has summer residencies at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and since July 2007 at the Bravo! Vail Valley Festival in Vail, Colorado.

The first record from 1926 … The Nutcracker Suite … see below
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The orchestra also performs an annual series of concerts at Carnegie Hall. From its earliest days the orchestra has been active in the recording studio, making extensive numbers of recordings, primarily for RCA Victor and Columbia Records.

The orchestra’s current music director is Yannick Nézet-Séguin, since 2012. (wikipedia)

And here´s one of their countless albums, called “Gala” and we hear 4 msterpieces of classic music (see tracklist).

And I´m very glad, that this old album is in a more or less good condition … so my vinyl rip should be s pleasure for everyone, who loves this kind of music, like I do.

Enjoy the power of classic music !

And the first time I heard a small little part of the “Nutcracker Suite” was while I´m listening the Emerson, Lake & Palmer album “Pictures At The Exhibition” and we should never forget, that Ravels “Bolero” was on a Colosseum album …

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Personnel:
Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Eugene Ormandy

Eugene Ormandy

Tracklist:

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a:
01. Miniature Overture 3.12
02. Danses Caracteristiques: March – Dance Of The Sugar-Plum Fairy – Russian Dance (Trepak) – Arabian Dance – Chinese Dance – Dance Of The Reed-Pipes 12.04
03. Waltz Of The Flowers 6.30

Claude Debussy:
04. Clair De Lune (from “Suite Bergamasque”) 4.13

Edvard Grieg:
05. Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, Op. 46 12.08
05.1. Morning Mood
05.2.Ase’s Death
05.3. Anitra’s Dance
05.4. In The Hall Of The Mountain King

Maurice Ravel:
06. Bolero 14.04

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Bruno Sanfilippo – Pianette (2019)

FrontCover1Bruno Sanfilippo is an Argentinian pianist, musician and composer.

Bruno Sanfilippo (born September 13, 1965) is a musician, pianist and contemporary classical music composer from Buenos Aires, Argentina. He currently resides in Barcelona, Spain. His sound has been described as an exploration of minimalist piano concepts and electroacoustic music. In 2015, he became one of the main exponents of the LIFEM 2015 festival, specializing in minimalist music.

The artist began playing the piano at a young age, starting with the Pleyel et Cie piano from his parents’ home[3] in Buenos Aires. Although Sanfilippo draws inspiration from various genres, in his early years, he was influenced by classical composers such as Satie, Debussy and Ravel. In 1988, Sanfilippo graduated from the Galvani Conservatory in Buenos Aires with a degree in Musical Composition.

In 2000, the artist left his native Argentina and began his life, and a new chapter of his career, in Barcelona, Spain.

In 1998, Sanfilippo started Ad21 music, a personal platform/label responsible for some of his albums except, The Poet, which was signed with 1631 Recordings and Decca Publishing in 2016, and Unity through the Russian label Dronarivm in 2018.

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Sanfilippo has participated in concerts and music festivals in both the national and international music scene. This includes performances at the Insolit Music Forum in Barcelona in 2007, the Stalker festival in Tallinn in 2012, the Antara Festival in London in 2013[6] and the LIFM festival in London in 2015.

The LIFEM 2015, or the London International Festival of Exploratory Music, was an opportunity for Sanfilippo to participate in the Minimalism Unwrapped series with fellow composers, Wim Mertens, Sylvain Chauveau and Greg Haines.

He has been lauded as an “exceptionally refined sound-sculptor” and his work has been compared to Max Richter, Arvo Pärt, Jóhann Jóhannsson, Harold Budd, and many more in the area of contemporary classical.

A sample of Sanfilippo’s “Ambessence Piano & Drones 1” was used in Canadian rapper Drake’s 2013 song “Started From The Bottom”.

Bruno Sanfilippo’s piano-based music continues to oscillate around melodic or atmospheric moods and with his new album released on New Years Day called ‘Pianette’, he returns back to the more melodic side of his compositions. (wikipedia)

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‘Pianette’, as an album, is the most structured and melodic of Bruno’s work for some time. There is a music box and ballet-like quality to the majority of the tracks and that’s clear from the opening title track. This is because the album itself is inspired in part by mechanical toys. It sets the tone of lush but dampened melodies, quietly beavering away under the surface. It also sets the pattern for the chords and notes being used as often at points during each track the music veers into a slight dissonance of chord change that makes you feel like something is beautiful – but not quite right. It’s a gentle curious mark that draws you into so many of the pieces such as ‘Paloma’ which revels in that state.

As the album moves forward we also start to dive inside the piano with its intimate microphone set up. ‘DOLL’ feels percussive with its stops, hammers and dampeners alluding to that mechanical toy feel. ‘Marionette’ sounds like there is a guitar playing too but its all in the pianos internals. It’s not quite like a prepared piano, but the softness of the sound really helps craft the tracks where this type of audio production is used.

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The album refuses to build up or slow down too much – it has an intensity to it that reminds me of old Europe and that comes home in the closing track ‘Goodness’ which is as close to a dramatic finale as the album gets.

Bruno Sanfilippo has made my favourite work of his with ‘Pianette’. It’s unashamedly new-classical in its composition, eerie with its tense production and melodic dissonance and oh so subtle in how it uses the piano to create mechanical life. The piano is easily one of the most expressive instruments on Earth, so playing these two ideas off against each other has created an inspired album of muted greatness. —higherplainmusic.com

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Personnel:
Bruno Sanfilippo (piano)

Inlet

Tracklist:
01. Pianette 3.29
02. Doll 5.14
03. La Mariposa 2.48
04. Marionette 3.18
05. Paloma 3.57
06. Multicolor 2-52
07. Empty Circus 2.39
08. Tin Soldiers 3.32
09. Wooden Toys 3.52
10. Dreams Of An Elephant 3.01
11. ClarOscuro Solo Piano Version 4.43
12. Goodness 3.55

Composed by Bruno Sanfilippo

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His website:
website

Gwilym Simcock – Blues Vignette (2009)

FrontCover1Gwilym Simcock (born 24 February 1981) is a Welsh pianist and composer working in both jazz and classical music, and often blurring the boundaries of the two.

Simcock was chosen as one of the 1000 Most Influential People in London by the Evening Standard. He was featured on the front cover of the August 2007 issue of the UK’s leading Jazz journal Jazzwise Magazine.

Simcock was born in Bangor, Gwynedd. At the age of eleven he attained the highest marks in the country for his Associated Board Grade 8 exams – on both piano and French horn. He went on to study classical piano, French horn and composition at Chetham’s School, Manchester, where he was introduced to jazz by pianist and teacher Les Chisnall and bassist and teacher Steve Berry. He went on to study jazz piano at The Royal Academy of Music, London with John Taylor, Nikki Iles, Nick Weldon and Geoff Keezer.

He graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with a first-class honours degree and the “Principal’s Prize’ for outstanding achievement. Whilst at the Royal Academy of Music he studied with many renowned musicians including Milton Mermikides.

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In 2008 he was commissioned to perform at The Proms at the Royal Albert Hall in London. He composed a Piano Concerto “Progressions” which he performed with his trio and the BBC Concert Orchestra on 9 August 2008, broadcast live on BBC2 TV.

On 5 October 2008 he was featured in an evening at the King’s Place Opening Festival in which he performed four concerts leading four different groups including a duo with John Taylor.

In 2006 he was the first jazz musician to be selected for the BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists scheme, and this was extended to 2008. It involved numerous recordings that were broadcast on BBC Radio 3 as solo performances, and his trio appearance at the Wigmore Hall during the London Jazz Festival 2006 (broadcast 7 July 2007).

His trio, which has performed at festivals and venues worldwide such as the North Sea Jazz Festival 2007, now features James Maddren (drums) and Yuri Goloubev (bass), while his debut album featured Stan Sulzmann, John Parricelli, Phil Donkin, Martin France and Ben Bryant. He was chosen by Chick Corea for a solo concert performance and live recording at Klavier Festival Ruhr 2007. This concert was broadcast on WDR radio and 20,000 copies were given away as a cover mount CD in Germany’s leading music magazine Fonoforum.

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In 2011 his album Good Days At Schloss Elmau was one of the twelve nominees for the Mercury Music Prize, ultimately losing to PJ Harvey’s Let England Shake.[2]

He was a member of Tim Garland’s Lighthouse Trio, however left in 2013 being replaced by John Turville. He was a member of Malcolm Creese’s Acoustic Triangle, Stan Sulzmann’s Neon, and Bill Bruford’s Earthworks. He has also played with musicians including Dave Holland, Lee Konitz, Bob Mintzer, Bobby McFerrin, Kenny Wheeler, Iain Ballamy, Julian Argüelles, Pete King, Don Weller, Steve Waterman, and Torsten de Winkel / New York Jazz Guerrilla. He is a founder member of The Impossible Gentlemen.

He also plays French horn[3] and has played with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra (NYJO), the BBC Big Band, and with Kenny Wheeler on his 2003/2005 tour.

In recent times he has been on tour with legendary US guitarist Pat Metheny in a quartet featuring Linda Oh and Antonio Sanchez. (wikipedia)

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And here´s his second solo-album:

And the album launched his new trio with extraordinary, classically trained Russian bassist Yuri Goloubev and young UK drum star James Maddren as well as documenting Gwilym’s emerging voice as a solo pianist. The first CD offers a mix of stunning improvisations and new Simcock compositions as well as insightful interpretations of Grieg’s Piano Concerto and the popular tune “On Broadway”. It also provides a brief window into the mind of a composer who mixes classical and jazz without effort, with a recording of a suite for cello and piano originally written for the opening of London’s newest venue King’s Place. Classical cellist Cara Berridge features on this work. The trio CD is a stunning mix of Simcock compositions and brilliant interpretations of great classics such as “Black Coffee” and “Cry Me A River”.

As Gwilym himself says “recording an album is like taking a photograph. An album is a document of a specific moment in time, a vignette, an insight into the stage that one as a musician has reached. This album marks both the beginning of a fresh journey with a new trio, and documents my continuing quest towards finding an individual voice as a solo pianist”.

He goes on to say: “All of this music is neither ‘Jazz’ nor ‘Classical’. It is just music, and the type of music that interests and stimulates me. What I feel is important in music is lyricism, subtlety and clarity in harmonic and rhythmic movement, and an overall sense of an emotional connection with the listener, whatever the context of the music may be”. (press release)

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“The first of this double CD collection is a wonderful display of Simcock’s gifts as a solo pianist as well as his talents as a composer in jazz and classical idioms”. (Ray Comiskey, The Irish Times)

“Just when you thought the piano could go no further in jazz one emerges to raise the bar of invention and virtuosity still higher. On this recording Gwilym Simcock seems to have breached a dam of inhibition and let loose a flood of music that is truly exhilarating”. (Helen Mayhew, JazzFM)

“Gwilym Simcock’s latest Blues Vignette (Basho) adds to the British pianist’s growing reputation is an ambitious double album deftly covering both solo and trio formats with some vivid originals evoking Jarrett and Bill Evans while skilfully straddling the classical and jazz hemispheres”. (James McGowan, Tribune)

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“Simcock is certainly going to open some eyes and ears in North America with this ambitious release, which demonstrates why this still young musician and composer is starting to be mentioned as being among the very best in the world” (JazzChicago.net)

“The balance Simcock achieves between compositional structure and improvisation is the thread which runs through the trio numbers and is the unifying strand between the two CDs. Each is an inseparable part of Simcock’s emerging musical identity. It will be fascinating to see how this trio develops over time, for its potential is clearly great. Undoubtedly one of the year’s most satisfying releases”. (Ian Patterson, Allaboutjazz)

“Simcock’s imagination really does seem to flow freely across classical and jazz without noticing the joins. Simcock, Goloubev and James Maddren celebrate the trio tradition of Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett on some vivid originals here – and the young leader sounds as if he’s wearing his immense knowledge more lightly, yet using it more incisively, than ever before”. (John Fordham, The Guardian)

And I add a small booklet with more reviews.

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Personnel:
Yuri Goloubev (bass)
James Maddren (drums)
Gwilym Simcock (piano)
+
Cara Berridge (cello on 09. + 10.)

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Tracklist:

CD 1:
01.  Little People (Simcock) 6.56
02. Exploration On Mvt II Of Grieg Piano Concerto (Simcock) 8.33
03. On Broadway (Mann/Weil) 4.14
04. Improvisation I – Statues (Simcock) 3.05
05. Improvosation II – Letter To The Editor (Simcock) 3.49
06. Improvisation III – 
Be Still Now (Simcock) 4.04
07. Caldera (Simcock) 9.38
08. Jaco And Joe (Simcock) 9.20
09. Suite For Cello And Piano Part 1 – Kinship (Simcock) 14.56
10. Suite For Cello And Piano Part 2 – Homeward (Simcock) 6.04

CD 2:
01. Introduction (Simcock) 4.45
02. Tundra (Simcock) 7.04
03. Blues Vignette (Simcock) 8.11
04. Black Coffee (Burke) 5.22
05. Longing To Be (Simcock) 12.16
06. Nice Work If You Can Get It (Gershwin) 6.35
07. Cry Me A River (Hamilton) 8.05
08. 1981 (Simcock) 8.29

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More from Gwilym Simcock:
More

Pierre Boulez & The Cleveland Orchestra Nocturnes + La Mer (Claude Debussy) (1995)

FrontCover1(Achille) Claude Debussy ( 22 August 1862 – 25 March 1918) was a French composer. He is sometimes seen as the first Impressionist composer, although he vigorously rejected the term. He was among the most influential composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Born to a family of modest means and little cultural involvement, Debussy showed enough musical talent to be admitted at the age of ten to France’s leading music college, the Conservatoire de Paris. He originally studied the piano, but found his vocation in innovative composition, despite the disapproval of the Conservatoire’s conservative professors. He took many years to develop his mature style, and was nearly 40 when he achieved international fame in 1902 with the only opera he completed, Pelléas et Mélisande.

Debussy’s orchestral works include Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune (1894), Nocturnes (1897–1899) and Images (1905–1912). His music was to a considerable extent a reaction against Wagner and the German musical tradition. He regarded the classical symphony as obsolete and sought an alternative in his “symphonic sketches”, La mer (1903–1905). His piano works include two books of Préludes and two of Études. Throughout his career he wrote mélodies based on a wide variety of poetry, including his own. He was greatly influenced by the Symbolist poetic movement of the later 19th century. A small number of works, including the early La Damoiselle élue and the late Le Martyre de saint Sébastien have important parts for chorus. In his final years, he focused on chamber music, completing three of six planned sonatas for different combinations of instruments.

With early influences including Russian and far-eastern music, Debussy developed his own style of harmony and orchestral colouring, derided – and unsuccessfully resisted – by much of the musical establishment of the day. His works have strongly influenced a wide range of composers including Béla Bartók, Olivier Messiaen, George Benjamin, and the jazz pianist and composer Bill Evans. Debussy died from cancer at his home in Paris at the age of 55 after a composing career of a little more than 30 years.

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Pierre Louis Joseph Boulez CBE (French: [pjɛʁ lwi ʒozεf bulɛz]; 26 March 1925 – 5 January 2016) was a French composer, conductor, writer and founder of several musical institutions. He was one of the dominant figures of the post-war classical music world.

Born in Montbrison in the Loire department of France, the son of an engineer, Boulez studied at the Conservatoire de Paris with Olivier Messiaen, and privately with Andrée Vaurabourg and René Leibowitz. He began his professional career in the late 1940s as music director of the Renaud-Barrault theatre company in Paris. As a young composer in the 1950s he quickly became a leading figure in avant-garde music, playing an important role in the development of integral serialism and controlled chance music. From the 1970s onwards he pioneered the electronic transformation of instrumental music in real time. His tendency to revise earlier compositions meant that his body of completed works was relatively small, but it included pieces regarded by many as landmarks of twentieth-century music, such as Le Marteau sans maître, Pli selon pli and Répons. His uncompromising commitment to modernism and the trenchant, polemical tone in which he expressed his views on music led some to criticise him as a dogmatist.

In parallel with his activities as a composer Boulez became one of the most prominent conductors of his generation. In a career lasting more than sixty years he held the positions of chief conductor of the New York Philharmonic and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, music director of the Ensemble intercontemporain and principal guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Cleveland Orchestra. He made frequent guest appearances with many of the world’s other great orchestras, including the Vienna Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic and the London Symphony Orchestra. He was particularly known for his performances of the music of the first half of the twentieth century—including Debussy and Ravel, Stravinsky and Bartók, and the Second Viennese School—as well as that of his contemporaries, such as Ligeti, Berio and Carter. His work in the opera house included the Jahrhundertring—the production of Wagner’s Ring cycle for the centenary of the Bayreuth Festival—and the world premiere of the three-act version of Alban Berg’s Lulu. His recorded legacy is extensive.

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He founded a number of musical institutions in Paris, including the Domaine musical, the Institut de recherche et coordination acoustique/musique (IRCAM), the Ensemble intercontemporain and the Cité de la Musique, as well as the Lucerne Festival Academy in Switzerland. (wikipedia)

Pierre Boulez made his early reputation as a Debussy conductor, and with good reason. Debussy’s reputation as a musical “impressionist” led most people to think of him as a sort of musical Claude Monet–all blurry outlines and fuzzy images–but Boulez changed this perception, bringing an analytical clarity and razor-sharp definition to the composer’s musical mosaics. What he has achieved in this second series of Debussy recordings is an additional naturalness and spontaneity of expression. The Cleveland Orchestra is the ideal vehicle for this sort of interpretation, being perhaps the most technically precise band in the world. The result is just about perfect. (by David Hurwitz)

Recorded at the Masonic Auditorium, Cleveland, March 1991 (4) / March 1993

BackCover1Personnel:
The Cleveland Orchestra+ Chorus conducted by Pierre Boulez

The Cleveland Orchestra Chorus
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Franklin Cohen (clarinet on 04.)

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Tracklist:

Nocturnes:
01. Nuages 6.15
02. Fêtes 6.31
03. Sirènes 9.47

04. Première Rhapsodie (Pour Orchestre Avec Clarinette Principale) 8.42
05. Jeux (Poème Dansé) 16.06
La Mer (Trois Esquisses Symphoniques):
06. De L’Aube À Midi Sur La Mer 8.47
07. Jeux De Vagues 7.09
08. Dialogue Du Vent Et De La Mer 7.41

Music composed by Claude Debussy

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The Cleveland Orchestra

Alan Hovhaness – Mysterious Mountains (2003)

FrontCover1The Hovhaness musical legacy is numerous and still largely inaccessible. There are more symphonies unrecorded than there are recorded … although that margin is narrowing.

Hovhaness’s catalogue is littered with references to mountains. Examples abound: Symphony No. 46 To Green Mountains (recorded on Koch by Vakhtang Jordania), Symphony No. 13 Holy Mountain, Symphony No. 57 Cold Mountain, Mountains and Rivers Without End and the various piano solos including the Mount Katahdin sonata. Indeed the symphony which brought him a major recording contract has a title which combines two potent elements in the Hovhaness vocabulary; mountains and mystery. The work was commissioned by Stokowski after his success with the First Symphony The Exile. Reiner recorded it with the Chicago orchestra. Amongst modern recordings the competition includes an earlier version in which Schwarz conducts the Seattle Symphony (Delos DE 3157). You might also come across the Musicmasters CD on which Dennis Russell Davies directs the American Composers Orchestra. The latter was made in 1988: the Delos Schwarz in 1993.

The Musicmasters disc is forwardly recorded but the strings have a thin edginess that sits uncomfortably with this music of exaltation. The Delos sounds ample, close and luxurious by comparison. Silky textured it may be but not sybaritic. On Telarc Schwarz, a Alan Hovhaness02decade after the Delos sessions in the presence of the composer, takes almost two minutes more in the first movement andante con moto than on the Delos disc. The other two movements are about the same time – well maybe a second or five longer with the RLPO. If the issue was only Mysterious Mountain I would recommend the Delos disc where the music of the first movement is more in touch with the ‘con moto’ marking.

Mysterious Mountain is smoothly contoured. There are no horrors or chasms; no nightmares or jagged cliffs. The music proceeds with liquid flow, like some beneficent answer to prayer, a benediction in comfort, a balm and healing. This is all articulated from the vantage point of Vaughan Williams’ Tallis Fantasia. There is no ‘barkbrod’ in this music, no saltpetre or bile. Schwarz communicates this more directly in 1993 (Delos) than he does in 2003 and the Seattle players sound velvety – a most refined yet powerful recording. Nothing serious amiss with the Telarc and glowingly representative of the work. It is just that the Delos sounds that much better.

Hymn to Glacier Peak is his last but one symphony. Initially this sounds similar to Mysterious Mountain but seraphic birdsong intervenes contrasting with the leathery nightmare chorus to be heard in Symphony No. 23 Ani. Birdsong also sings through the Love Song to Hinako middle movement. This echoes the coloratura voice of his wife Hinako Fujihara well known from recordings of earlier works. A dissonant chime sequence, oft repeated, appears in the final movement along with a ‘sword wind’ fugue typical from the Ninth Symphony (St Vartan) onwards. The music has the powerful surging ebb and flow of Vaughan Williams’ Concerto Grosso for massed strings.

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The Mount St Helens symphony dates from 1982, two years after the most photographed eruption of all time. This is another flowing work but with very strong melodic interest especially for the woodwind. The second movement, Spirit Lake is alive with the chime of bells suggestive of worship and praise, together with his trademark pizzicato delicacy. There is also strong melodic material as in the oboe song at 1.22. The ‘eruption’ when it comes is groaned out by percussion and shuddering strings (2.19) with braying, snaking and somersaulting trombones (2.46) straight out of the phantasms of Symphony No. 19 Vishnu.

Storm on Mount Wildcat is a rare survival from the 1930s. The composer had destroyed most of his work from that era in a bonfire of manuscripts. This survived. The noisier parts of it remind me of two orchestral preludes to The Tempest: Sibelius’s and, a step or two closer to onomatopoeia, Gösta Nystroem’s. The element of aural naturalism is offset by a weaving temple dance.

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The composer’s widow, Hinako Fujihara, has done much to promote the composer’s music, singing in Celestial Canticle, Presentiment, Kanuko, Mysterious Harp, arias from the opera Pericles, the Sonata for soprano and harp, Symphony No. 38 and others. Mention of Fujihara and her aspiring celestial coloratura reminds me that two LP recordings from the 1980s appear never to have been reissued on CD. One involves Fujihara’s singing. It was the Symphony No. 47 titled Walla Walla played by the Walla Walla Symphony Orchestra conducted by Ray Lee Fiese. Fujihara was the singer. This, and another Hovhaness symphony LP, also from the Fujihara Record Company, seem never to have been reissued on CD. I do hope that someone will return to these recordings and make them available again.

Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra

While some find Hovhaness unvarying others will sense considerable healing in the spiritual wings of these works. This Telarc disc is a generous way of experiencing his approach to the symphony, recorded and played magnificently ‘just down the road’ from this reviewer’s home. I wish I had known when the sessions were taking place. —Rob Barnett

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Personnel:
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Gerard Schwarz

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Tracklist:

Symphony No. 2, Mysterious Mountain, Op. 132:
01. I. Andante 7:42
02. II. Double Fugue – Moderato Maestoso 5:50
03. III. Andante Espressivo 5:51

Symphony No. 66, Hymn To Glacier Peak, Op. 428:
04. I. Andante Maestoso 9:07
05. II. Love Song To Hinako – Andante Espressivo 2:47
06. III. Prelude And Fugue – Largo Maestoso 6:44

Symphony No. 50, Mount St. Helens, Op. 360:
07 I. Andante, Grazioso 10:01
08 II. Spirit Lake – Allegro 7:42
09 III. Volcano – Adagio-Allegro-Adagio 11:33

Storm On Mount Wildcat, Op. 2, No. 2:
10 Lento Tempestoso 3:37

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Alan Hovhaness (March 8, 1911 – June 21, 2000)

Alan Hovhaness was an American composer. He was one of the most prolific 20th-century composers, with his official catalog comprising 67 numbered symphonies (surviving manuscripts indicate over 70) and 434 opus numbers. The true tally is well over 500 surviving works, since many opus numbers comprise two or more distinct works.

The Boston Globe music critic Richard Buell wrote: “Although he has been stereotyped as a self-consciously Armenian composer (rather as Ernest Bloch is seen as a Jewish composer), his output assimilates the music of many cultures. What may be most American about all of it is the way it turns its materials into a kind of exoticism. The atmosphere is hushed, reverential, mystical, nostalgic.” (wikipedia)

 

Walter (Wendy) Carlos – The Well-Tempered Synthesizer (1969)

FrontCover1Wendy Carlos (born Walter Carlos; November 14, 1939) is an American musician and composer best known for her electronic music and film scores. Born and raised in Rhode Island, Carlos studied physics and music at Brown University before moving to New York City in 1962 to study music composition at Columbia University. Studying and working with various electronic musicians and technicians at the city’s Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center, she helped the development of the Moog synthesizer, the first commercially available keyboard instrument created by Robert Moog.

Carlos came to prominence with Switched-On Bach (1968), an album of music by Johann Sebastian Bach performed on a Moog synthesizer which helped popularize its use in the 1970s and won her three Grammy Awards. Its commercial success led to several more keyboard albums from Carlos of varying genres including further synthesized classical music adaptations and experimental and ambient music. She composed the score to two Stanley Kubrick films, A Clockwork Orange (1971) and The Shining (1980), and also Tron (1982) for Walt Disney Productions.

In 1979, Carlos was one of the first public figures to disclose having undergone gender reassignment surgery.

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The Well-Tempered Synthesizer is the second studio album from the American musician and composer Wendy Carlos, originally released under her birth name, Walter Carlos, in November 1969 on Columbia Masterworks Records. Following the success of her previous album, Switched-On Bach (1968), Carlos proceeded to record a second album of classical music performed on a modular Moog synthesizer from multiple composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach, Claudio Monteverdi, Domenico Scarlatti, and George Frideric Handel. Its title is a play on words from Bach’s set of preludes and fugues named The Well-Tempered Clavier.

Upon its release, the album peaked at No. 199 on the US Billboard 200 chart and was nominated for two Grammy Awards.

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In 1969, during the unexpected commercial success of her debut studio album Switched-On Bach (1968), Carlos and her friend, collaborator, and producer Rachel Elkind started work on a follow-up using the same formula as Switched-On Bach: performing selections of classical music on a modular Moog synthesizer. Carlos planned to record an “ambitious 19th-century work”, but the lack of sufficient multitrack recording capabilities at the time did not allow such an undertaking. Ideas for Carlos to record her own compositions seemed “untimely” and was shelved for potential future albums. The two decided on a “new switched on Baroque album” featuring multiple composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach, Claudio Monteverdi, Domenico Scarlatti, and George Frideric Handel.

Like Switched-On Bach, the album was recorded on an 8-track Ampex tape recorder using numerous takes and overdubs. Carlos chose pieces from Handel’s Water Music suites as the music contained passages that suited to the limitations of the Moog synthesizer.

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Canadian pianist Glenn Gould spoke about Carlos’ rendition of Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 in G major: “To put it bluntly, the finest performance of any of the Brandenburgs—live, canned, or intuited—I’ve ever heard.”

The Well-Tempered Synthesizer was released in November 1969. It peaked at No. 199 on the Billboard 200 chart and was nominated for two Grammy Awards. In February 1974, Billboard reported that the album had sold around 200,000 copies in the US. (by wikipedia)

The soundtrack of my life (Steve Morse, Deep Purple):

Steve Morse

Pressed for a sequel to Switched-On Bach, the unexpectedly hot-selling breakthrough album for the synthesizer, Wendy Carlos temporarily shelved plans to move out of the 18th century and instead came up with an album that is, in some ways, even better than its famous predecessor. Her instrument rack had grown larger and more flexible and her technical abilities even sharper in the year since SOB came out — and the improvements are audible in the thicker harmonies and more sophisticated timbres, all without losing the zest and experimental zeal of the earlier record. Here, she revisits J.S. Bach and imaginatively translates the music of Monteverdi, Handel, and especially Domenico Scarlatti into the electronic medium. Excerpts from Monteverdi’s “Orfeo” and “1610 Vespers” serve as the gateway and closing benediction, respectively, to this collection, and four Scarlatti keyboard sonatas are given dazzling treatments (the sonata in G became well-known in the ’90s on a Christmas TV commercial). There is a mini-suite from Handel’s “Water Music” at the center of the album, and the densely orchestrated yet still dancing treatment of Bach’s “Brandenburg Concerto No. 4” serves as a signpost as to how far Carlos had come in only a year. (by Richard S. Ginell)

BackCover1Personnel:
Wendy Carlos (synthesizer)

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Tracklist:
01. Orfeo Suite (Toccata; Ritornello I; Choro II; Ritornello II; Choro II; Ritornello II) (Monteverdi) 3.22
02. Sonata in G major, L. 209/K. 455 (Scarlatti) 1.42
03. Sonata in D major, L. 164/K. 491 (Scarlatti) 3.55
04. Water Music: “Bourrée (Händel) 0.48
05. Water Music: Air (Händel) 2.47
06. Water Music: Allegro Deciso (Händel) 3.01
07. Sonata in E major, L. 430/K. 531 (Scarlatti) 1.56
08. Sonata in D major, L. 465/K. 96 (Scarlatti) 2.31
09. Brandenburg Concerto #4 in G major: Allegro (Bach) 8.06
10. Brandenburg Concerto #4 in G major: Andante (Bach) 3.37
11. Brandenburg Concerto #4 in G major: Presto (Bach) 4.46
12. Domine ad adjuvandum (from the 1610 Vespers) (Monteverdi) 2.22+
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13. Stereo Alignment Tones 0.10
14. Well Tempered Experiments (Wendy Carlos talks about her / his music) 9.08

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Maurice André – Trompettissimo (1995)

FrontCover1Maurice André (born 21 May 1933 – 25 February 2012) was a French trumpeter, active in the classical music field.

He was professor of trumpet at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris where he introduced the teaching of the piccolo trumpet including the Baroque repertoire on trumpet. André has inspired many innovations on his instrument and he contributed to the popularization of the trumpet.

André was born in Alès in the Cévennes, into a mining family. His father was an amateur musician; André studied trumpet with a friend of his father, who suggested that André be sent to the conservatory. In order to gain free admission to the conservatory, he joined a military band. After only six months at the conservatory, he won his first prize.

At the conservatory, André’s professor, Raymond Sabarich, reprimanded him for not having worked hard enough and told him to return when he could excel in his playing. A few weeks later, he returned to play all fourteen etudes found in the back of Arban’s book to a very high standard. Sabarich later said that “it was then that Maurice Andre became Maurice Andre.” Maurice André won the Geneva International Music Competition in 1955, together with Theo Mertens, and the ARD International Music Competition in Munich in 1963. He was made an honorary member of the Delta chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia at Ithaca College in New York in 1970.

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André rose to international prominence in the 1960s and 1970s with a series of recordings of baroque works on piccolo trumpet for Erato and other labels. He also performed many transcriptions of works for oboe, flute, and even voice and string instruments. André had over 300 audio recordings to his name, from the mid-1950s to his death.

André had three children: Lionel (1959-1988) trumpeter and music teacher; Nicolas, who plays the trumpet; and Béatrice, who plays the oboe. All three performed with their father in concert. He also made several recordings with his brother Raymond (b. 1941).

One of André’s students, Guy Touvron, wrote a biography entitled Maurice André: Une trompette pour la renommée (Maurice André: A Trumpet for Fame), which was published in 2003.

André spent the last few years of his life in retirement in southern France. He died at the age of 78 in a hospital in Bayonne on 25 February 2012. He is buried in the cemetery of the village of Saint-André-Capcèze (in the Lozère). (by wikipedia)

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At the height of his career, the name of Maurice André was synonymous with the trumpet. Not only was he largely responsible for establishing the trumpet as a popular solo instrument, but he also dominated the scene in the 1960s and 70s with a punishing schedule of concerts (an average of 180 a year) and more than 300 recordings, many made on his trademark piccolo trumpet.

André’s eventual success was founded on a solid technique, superb breath control and seemingly inexhaustible stamina, attributed by him to his years in the coalmine: “I built myself up when working in the mine at 14 years old, when I was moving 17 tons of coal a day,” he once said.

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Certainly the technique was formidable. Playing a three-valve Selmer instrument (a fourth valve was added by the manufacturer in 1967 in collaboration with André to extend the register downwards), he effortlessly negotiated the stratospheric pitch range for which the Baroque repertoire was notorious. In the virtuoso faster movements, his tone sparkled brilliantly; in the slow movements it was creamy and seductive. As Karajan once opined: “He’s undoubtedly the best trumpet player, but he’s not from our world.” (theguardian.com)

So … it´s time to listen to Maurice Andrea again … and again … and again …. He was brilliant !

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Personnel:
Maurice Andre (trumpet)
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Wolfgang Karius (organ)
Guy Perdersen (bass)
Jean-Marc Pulfer (organ)
Gus Wallez (drums)
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Harmonia Nova (on 01.):
Jean-Francois Jenny-Clark (bass)
Niels Lan Doky (clavecin, harpsichord, cembalo)
Daniel Humair (drums)

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Tracklist:

Marc-Antoine Charpentier:
01. Te Deum – Introduction 4.44

Johann Sebastian Bach:
Suite/Ouverture N°3 BWV 1068:
02. Air 3.24
03. Gavotte 1.19

Kantate BWV 78:
04. Aria pour 2 Trompettes 2.23
05. Suite/Ouverture N°2 BWV 1067 – Badinerie 1.25
06. Kantate BWV 140 -Choral “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme” 2.17
07. Suite/Ouverture N°2 BWV 1067 – Bourrées I & II 2.11

Antonio Vivaldi:
08. Le Quattro Stagioni – Largo 3.22

Johann Sebastian Bach:
09. Brandenburgisches Konzert – NR. 3 BWV 1048 – Allegro 2.15

Benedetto Marcello:
10. Adieu Venise 4.14

Arcangello Corelli:
11. Allemande 2.30

Jean-Michel Defaye:
12. Fugatissimo 2.21

Georg Friedrich Händel:
13. Allegro 2.40

Domenico Cimarosa:
14. Melodie 2.58

Georg Friedrich Händel:
15. Water Music – Aria 2.41

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Maurice André (21 May 1933 – 25 February 2012)

The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir (Ton Koopman) – Easter Oratorio – Magnificat (Bach) (1998)

FrontCover1Bach’s celebration of Easter is a mostly joyous one, opening with a three-movement sinfonia, richly orchestrated, and complete with trumpets and drums: the third movement includes the chorus inviting listeners to rejoice and hasten to the tomb of Jesus, “For our Savior has awakened.” There follow recitatives and arias for Mary Magdalen, Mary, the mother of James, Peter, and John. Each character goes through grief to love and gratefulness, and Bach’s endlessly inventive scoring, melodic lines, and changing orchestral textures take us on a rich, 40-minute musical journey to peace. Only a too-long soprano aria tends to wear. The Oratorio is coupled on this CD with Bach’s justly famous 12-movement setting (in 25 minutes) of the Magnificat text from Luke. Also elaborately scored, with the vocal choices, tempos, and mood changing every couple of minutes, this is one of the great works of Western liturgical music (Gardiner’s masterly reading of this work is a must-have). The performances, on Baroque instruments and with crisp, clean, unsentimental Baroque style, are exemplary. Rejoice! (by Robert Levine)

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1723-25 were powerful, productive years for Bach in Leipzig as Kantor. In 1723-24 Christmas, comes this Magnificat. Especially attractive to me is track 14, “Aria” “Quia respexit humilitatem” which is a powerful soprano and oboe movement aided by the full chorus piping in “To all Generations!”
The Easter Oratorio was a gift for an honorarium by Duke Christian composed around four aria recitatives for Mary Magdelene, Mary, John and Peter. The opening Sinfonia is breathtaking with its gracious oboe work by Marcel Ponseele.
Building to the heights of the finale, “Praise and Thanks” ends in triumphant declaration by full choir “The Lion of Judah approaches in triumph!”
Strong vocalist performances by soprano Lisa Larsson and bass Klaus Mertens. Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Chorus directed by Ton Koopman is well done with passion and pace.
With translation in French, German and English, this is excellent performance of important Sacred Large-Scale Composition for soloists, choir and orchestra. (by rodboomboom)

The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir

This recording is full of energy and joy. The period instruments sound so wonderful and lush. It was recorded in just the right environment and sounds superb.
The approach to both pieces is spot on and you will want to listen to this recording many times just for the sheer fun of it.
The provided booklet provides some helpful notes on the background of the pieces – when and why Bach wrote them. And also the libretto (which is ALWAYS nice to have). I like to have all that information available and knowing when and why can deepen our appreciation of the music. However, the first and most important thing is to hear the music.
This recording is among the best of these works. So, you would do well to begin here! (by Craig Matteson)

Antonius Gerhardus Michael (Ton) Koopman (born 2 October 1944) is a Dutch conductor, organist and harpsichordist. He is also professor at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague. In April 2003 he was knighted in the Netherlands, receiving the Order of the Netherlands Lion.

Koopman had a “classical education” and then studied the organ (with Simon C. Jansen), harpsichord (with Gustav Leonhardt), and musicology in Amsterdam. He specialized in Baroque music and received the Prix d’Excellence for both organ and harpsichord.

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Koopman founded the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra in 1979 and the Amsterdam Baroque Choir in 1992, now combined as the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir. Koopman concentrates on Baroque music, especially that of Bach and is a leading figure in the “authentic performance” movement. While a number of early-music conductors have ventured into newer music, Koopman has not. He has said, “I draw the line at Mozart’s death” (1791). One exception is his recording of the Concert Champêtre of Francis Poulenc, written in 1928.

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Personnel:
Bogna Bartosz (Alto on 12. – 23.)
Lisa Larsson (Soprano)
Elisabeth von Magnus (Alto on 01. – 11.)
Klaus Mertens (Bass)
Gerd Türk (Tenor)
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soprano vocals:
Annemieke Rademaker – Caroline Stam – Francine van der Heijden – Henriette Feith –  Johannette Zomer – Loes Groot Antink – Maria-Luz Alvarez – Mariette Bastiaansen – Vera Lansink
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tenor vocals :
Geraint Roberts – Henk Gunneman – Jeremy Ovenden – Joost Van Der Linden – Otto Bouwknegt
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Margreet Bongers (bassoon)
Margaret Faultless (solo violin)
Wilbert Hazelzet (solo flute)
Stephen Keavy (solo trumpet)
Jan Kleinbussink (organ)
Jaap ter Linden (solo cello)
Luuk Nagtegaal (timpani)
Nicholas Pap (bass)
Marcel Ponseele (solo oboe d´amore)
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Alto vocals:
Annemieke Cantor – Hugo Naessens – Martine Straesser* – Peter De Groot – Stephen Carter
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Bass vocals:
Donald Bentvelsen – Hans Wijers – Matthijs Mesdag – Mitchell Sandler – René Steur
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violin:
Alida Schat – Carla Marotta – Foskien Kooistra – Marc Cooper – Marshall Marcus – Nicola Cleminson – Tjamke Roelofs
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viola:
Jane Rogers – Martin Kelly
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cello:
Jaap ter Linden – Jonathan Manson
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trumpet:
Jonathan Impett – Robert Vanrijne – Stephen Keavy
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flute:
Marc Hantaï – Marion Moonen – Wilbert Hazelzet
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recorder:
Marion Verbruggen – Reine-Marie Verhagen
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oboe d’amore:
Marcel Ponseele – Michel Henry
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The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra (leader: Margaret Faultless) conducted by Ton Koopman
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The Amsterdam Baroque Choir conducted by Simon Schouten

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Tracklist:

Easter Oratorio BWV 249 (41.02):
01. Sinfonia 4.01
02. Adagio 3.16
03. Chorus: “Kommit, Eilet und Laufet” 4.46
04. Recitativo: “O kalter Männer Sinn!” 1.04
05. Aria: “Seele, deine Spezereien” 11.01
06. Recitativo: “Hier Ist Die Gruft” 0:47
07. Aria: “Sanfte soll mein Todeskummer” 6.17
08. Recitativo: “Indessen seufzen wir” 1.05
09. Aria: “Saget, saget mir geschwinde” 5.47
10. Recitativo: “Wir sind erfreut” 0.40
11. Chorus: “Preis nd Dank” 2.20

Magnificat BWV 243 (25:18)
12. Chorus: “Magnificat Anima Mea Dominum” 2.50
13. Aria: “Et Exsultavit Spiritus Meus In Deo” 2.27
14. Aria: “Quia Respexit Humilitatem” 2.23
15. Chorus: “Omnes Generationes” 1.14
16. Aria: “Quia Fecit Mihi Magna Qui Potens Est” 2.07
17. Aria: “Et Misericordia” 3.14
18. Chorus: “Fecit Potentiam In Brachio Suo” 1.49
19. Aria: “Deposuit Potentes De Sede” 2.17
20. Aria: “Esurientes Implevit Bonis” 2.44
21. Chorus: “Suscepit Israel Puerum Summ” 1.22
22. Chorus: “Sicut Locutus Est Ad Patres Nostros” 1.18
23. Chorus: “Gloria Patri, Gloria Filio” 1.47

Music composed by Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750)

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London Classical Players (Roger Norrington) – Mozart- Symphonies 39 & 41 (1991)

FrontCover1Sir Roger Arthur Carver Norrington CBE (born 16 March 1934) is a British conductor. He is the son of Sir Arthur Norrington and his brother is Humphrey Thomas Norrington.

Norrington studied at The Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Dragon School, Oxford, Westminster School, Clare College, Cambridge and the Royal College of Music under Adrian Boult among others. Norrington played the violin, and worked as a tenor through the 1960s, and in 1962 founded the Schütz Choir (later the Schütz Choir of London).
Conductor in Britain and US

From 1969 to 1984, Norrington was music director of Kent Opera. In 1978, he founded the London Classical Players and remained their musical director until 1997. From 1985 to 1989, he was principal conductor of the Bournemouth Sinfonietta. He is also president of the Oxford Bach Choir. In the US, from 1990 to 1994, he was music director of the Orchestra of St. Luke’s.

With his wife, the choreographer Kay Lawrence, he formed in 1984 the Early Opera Project to complement his concert work in period-style opera, beginning with Claudio Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino that year, and touring Britain in 1986.

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In Europe, he was principal conductor of the Camerata Salzburg from 1997 to 2006, and principal conductor of the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra from 1998 to 2011.[2] On 28 July 2016, he conducted the final concert of the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra in London at the Royal Albert Hall as part of The Proms, before its scheduled merger with the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg.

He was artistic advisor of the Boston Handel and Haydn Society from 2006 to 2009. He was principal guest conductor of the Orchestre de chambre de Paris and the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. He was principal conductor of the Zurich Chamber Orchestra from 2011 to 2016. He has conducted over 50 world premieres, and has appeared regularly with the Berlin Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic, and major orchestras throughout the world.

Norrington is best known for historically informed performances of Baroque, Classical and Romantic music. He is a member of the historically informed performance movement. Norrington has advocated a limited or no use of vibrato in orchestral performances, which has brought him both positive and adverse criticism. He has strictly followed Beethoven’s original metronome markings in his symphonies, despite critical comment that these markings were “miscalculated”.

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He has conducted recordings of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Berlioz, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Dvorak, Bruckner, and Mahler on period and modern instruments. In particular, Norrington makes very sparse use of the vibrato, often uses very fast tempos, and varies the placement of the instruments on stage. Especially with the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra Norrington has developed a very individual sound, which is often dubbed by the trade press as Stuttgart Sound. This refers to the synthesis of historically informed music making with the means of a modern and flexible orchestra. Symphonic cycles which Norrington interpreted in recent years with the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra have received worldwide acclaim. However, Norrington’s performance practice is not without critics among other musicians; for example, the violist of the Melos Quartet, Hermann Voss, drew two tough caricatures to Norrington’s vibrato-free string sound in 2005, adding: “Except for the Stuttgart Feuilleton, the New Stuttgart Style finds only contempt and scorn.”

In August 2008, Norrington appeared in the reality TV talent show-themed television series, Maestro on BBC Two, when he led the judging panel. He conducted the First Night of the Proms in 2006 and the Last Night of The Proms on 13 September 2008.

Norrington has been married twice. He and his second wife, Kay Lawrence, have a son, Tom.

He was appointed OBE in 1980, CBE in 1990 and Knight Bachelor in 1997. He is a patron of Bampton Classical Opera and the Orchestra of St Paul’s. He is an honorary fellow of Clare College Cambridge and holds honorary degrees from the Universities of York and Kent and an honorary doctorate from the Royal College of Music.

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The London Classical Players (LCP) was a British orchestra that specialized in music following historically informed performance (HIP) practices and orchestral performances on period musical instruments. Sir Roger Norrington founded the LCP in 1978. From 1978 to 1992, the concertmaster of the London Classical Players was baroque violinist John Holloway. The LCP made a variety of recordings for EMI Classics. Many of the players in the LCP overlapped with four other major HIP orchestral ensembles, the Academy of Ancient Music, the English Concert, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, and the English Baroque Soloists.

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Among their famous concert series was “The Beethoven Experience” in 1987,[3] and “The Berlioz Experience” in 1988. In 1996, the LCP was invited to open the Prague Spring Festival in the traditional opening festival concert of Bedrich Smetana’s Ma Vlast, a controversial decision at the time.

In 1997, the LCP formally dissolved as an organization, and its work was absorbed into the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. (by wikipedia)

And here are two really nice Mozart Symphonies:

The Symphony No. 39 is the first of a set of three (his last symphonies) that Mozart composed in rapid succession during the summer of 1788. No. 40 was completed on 25 July and No. 41 on 10 August. Nikolaus Harnoncourt argues that Mozart composed the three symphonies as a unified work, pointing, among other things, to the fact that the Symphony No. 39 has a grand introduction (in the manner of an overture) but no coda.

Around the time that he composed the three symphonies, Mozart was writing his piano trios in E major and C major (K. 542 and K. 548), his sonata facile (K. 545), and a violin Mozart01sonatina (K. 547). Mozart biographer Alfred Einstein has suggested that Mozart took Michael Haydn’s Symphony No. 26, in the same key, as a model.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart completed his Symphony No. 41 in C major, K. 551, on 10 August 1788. The longest and last symphony that he composed, it is regarded by many critics as among the greatest symphonies in classical music.

The work is nicknamed the Jupiter Symphony, the name showing that for people of the time, this was a really big work, in all senses. This name stems not from Mozart but rather was likely coined by the impresario Johann Peter Salomon.

It is not known whether Symphony No. 41 was ever performed in the composer’s lifetime. According to Otto Erich Deutsch, around this time Mozart was preparing to hold a series of “Concerts in the Casino” in a new casino in the Spiegelgasse owned by Philipp Otto. Mozart even sent a pair of tickets for this series to his friend Michael Puchberg. But it seems impossible to determine whether the concert series was held, or was cancelled for lack of interest (by wikpedia)

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Personnel:
London Classical Players conducteted by Roger Norrington

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Tracklist:

Symphony No. 39 In E Flat, K.543:
01. Adagio – Allegro 9.51
02. Andante Con Moto 6.43
03. Menuetto (Allegretto) & Trio 4.18
04. Finale: Allegro 8.18

Symphony No. 41 In C, K.551, “Jupiter”:
05. Allegro Vivace 11.18
06. Andante Cantabile 8.31
07. Menuetto (Allegretto) & Trio 5.14
08. IV. Finale: Molto Allegro 11.48

Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791)

Karl Jenkins – Imagined Oceans (1998)

FrontCover1Sir Karl William Pamp Jenkins CBE (born 17 February 1944) is a Welsh multi-instrumentalist and composer. His best known works include the song “Adiemus” and the Adiemus album series; Palladio; The Armed Man; and his Requiem.

Jenkins was educated in music at Cardiff University and the Royal Academy of Music: of the latter, he is a fellow and an Associate. He was a member of the jazz-rock band Soft Machine. Jenkins has composed music for advertisement campaigns and has won the industry prize twice. (by wikipedia)

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This work by Welsh composer Karl Jenkins (now Sir Karl Jenkins) was inspired by thirteen lunar mare for which the tracks are titled. The musical style is similar to Jenkins’s Adiemus compositions and each track explores the meaning of its Latin name through various musical techniques. Unlike most of the Adiemus pieces, the lyrics for Imagined Oceans consist of syllables from the tracks’ titles rather than invented text. (IC B. (icberry))

Soft Machine

Karl Jenkins’ successful combination of new age, jazz, and classical influences continues with Imagined Oceans, a musical interpretation of 13 of the Latin-named areas of the moon which were once believed to be vast stretches of water. The recorder of Pamela Thorby features heavily throughout, as does the imaginative use of voices; three female singers with a collected range of over three and a half octaves furthers the ethereal feel. There are as many highlights in this dense and complex collection as there are impenetrable sections that will require several listens.

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The pizzicati “Mare Vaporum (Sea of Vapours),” distinguished by the use of steam-like cymbals and a mesmeric flute part; “Mare Australis (Southern Sea),” a Mozart-influenced piece featuring Australian didgeridoo; and “Lacus Pereverantiae (Lake of Perseverance),” driven by a relentlessly repetitive (syncopated) rhythm, are among the best tracks. The musical metaphors are strewn throughout and ably continued with “Mare Imbrium (Sea of Showers),” punctuated by pizzicato string raindrops. Jenkins goal, “To create a world of aquatic fantasy,” is ably achieved with this intricate and involved collection. (by Brendan Swift)

In other words: Another masterpiece of the one and only Karl Jenkins.

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Personnel:
Karl Jenkins Ensemble conducted by Nic Pendlebury
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Heather Cairncross (Alto)
Sarah Eyden (Soprano)
Micaela Haslam (Mezzo-Soprano)
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Pamela Thorby –(recorder)

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Tracklist:
01. Mare Crisium Introitus (Sea Of Crises) 2.53
02. Lacus Serenitatis (Lake Of Serenity) 4.54
03. Mare Vaporum (Sea Of Vapours) 4.28
04. Mare Australis (Southern Sea) 6.44
05. Lacus Somniorum (Lake Of Dreams) 2.40
06. Lacus Pereverantiae (Lake Of Perseverance) 8.45
07. Lacus Doloris (Lake Of Sorrow) 4.55
08. Mare Undarum (Sea of Waves) 4.58
09. Palus Nebularum (Marsh Of Mists) 3.11
10. Sinus Iridium (Bay Of Rainbows) 2.15
11. Mare Imbrium (Sea Of Showers) 4.48
12. Lacus Temporis (Lake Of Time) 5.14
13. Lacus Lenitatis (Lake Of Tenderness) 3.26
14. Mare Crisium (Sea Of Crises) 5.40

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