Brendel has now recorded the work three times for the gramophone. At first, on Vox/Turnabout in the early 1960s, he was the brilliant iconoclast before his deeper realization of the work's essentially comic energies. And here I use 'comic' both in the narrow sense of the term (the Diabe/li is, after all, full ofjokes, many of them with the staying-power of the finest Wildean epigrams) and in the broader sense: what Susanne Langer has called, comedy "as an image of human vitality holding its own in the world amid the surprises of unplanned coincidence".
The cycle of 125 variations that Costanzo Festa composed on the famous melody called La Spagna is conceived on a scale unique during the Renaissance, and may justly be described as a compositional tour-de-force. It has been comparisons to works such as Johann Sebastian Bach's Goldberg Variations. This budget priced reissue, released for the first time in 2003, features a selection of these variations performed by the Huelgas-Ensemble.
What remains consistent is Pierre Fournier's elegant and aristocratic playing, his superb control of the bow and his supple, consistently beautiful tone impressed a whole generation of cellists and music lovers all over the world. Sixty-five years since he first recorded for Decca, we are proud to celebrate the artistry of this most distinguished of cellists and the wealth of recordings for Deutsche Grammophon, Decca and Philips – presented here together for the very first time in this 25-CD limited edition set.
Celebrating the 175th Anniversary of the New York Philharmonic, America’s oldest symphony orchestra. 65 CDs of famous New York Philharmonic performances conducted by many of its most renowned music directors, from the very first recording in 1917 up to 1995.
This is Volume 4 in Barry Douglas’s monumental project to record the complete works for solo piano by Johannes Brahms. Each volume has been released to critical acclaim, the first one, in 2012, being seen by BBC Music as ‘a triumph of Brahmsian thought, with playing that gets right to the heart of the composer’. Once again, the album is presented as a stand-alone recital, prominently featuring the C major Sonata, which was Brahms’s first published work. The influence on Brahms of his early romantic predecessors Beethoven and Schubert is obvious here, not only in the virtuoso demands on the performer but also in the opening, which recalls both Beethoven’s ‘Hammerklavier’ Sonata, Op. 106 and Schubert’s ‘Wanderer’ Fantasy.
While Sergey Rachmaninov is justly celebrated for his piano concertos and symphonies, his sets of variations shouldn't be overlooked, for they are among his most inventive and satisfying works. Russian pianist Danil Trifonov plays the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, the Variations on a Theme of Chopin, and the Variations on a Theme of Corelli on this 2015 Deutsche Grammophon release, and he offers his own special tribute to the composer in his solo piano suite, Rachmaniana. For the Rhapsody, Trifonov is joined by Yannick Nézet-Séguin and the Philadelphia Orchestra, an ensemble that counts historic performances with Rachmaninov as part of its heritage, and plays with its characteristic lush sound and passionate expression…
The two concertos are worth lisenting although not masterpices. The second in the disk is better. Spada's playing is delicate and precise although the tempi in both finales is rather slow. Not to be compared with those concertos by Mozart but good. The overture to "Les Horaces" is beautifully composed in a Gluckian style. Its final subject heard by the end is very inspired and heroic. The overture to "Semiramide" (presented as to either "La Secchia Rapita" or "Il Ricco di un Giorno" -I can not remember exactly- in other Salieri's CD) is less interesting and Spada's slow tempo reinforces the mediocrity of the piece.
A genius signed to Decca in 1946 who defined Deccas piano sound in the 1950s and 1960s with ravishing cantabile and depth of sonority borne of matchless technique. Complete Decca Recordings on 35CDs, including new-to-CD early recordings remastered from 78s, plus some of Deccas first-ever LPs.
This 50-CD collection of analogue albums aims to represent the heyday of Philips’ passion for great natural sound – the Stereo Years. There was a firm belief within the label’s team that recording technique was there to serve the music - the Musicians had their own views about how any given piece should be interpreted and how it should sound; the recording team’s job was to grasp that vision and make it a reality. This recording philosophy, combined with great artistry and visionary repertoire policy, created a special chapter in the history of classical music recordings that still inspires artists, sound engineers and collectors alike.