Home Blog Page 59

Daniel Barenboim – conductor & pianist

Daniel Barenboim was born on November 15, 1942 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Since then he has enjoyed an extraordinarily successful career as a pianist and conductor and become an ambassador for the promotion of classical music and for peace in the Middle East.

10 must have recordings featuring the maestro

  1. Beethoven – Complete Piano Sonatas
    Daniel Barenboim (piano)
  2. Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 18 in B flat major, K456, etc.
    Daniel Barenboim (piano/conductor), Berliner Philharmoniker
  3. The Chopin Concertos
    Daniel Barenboim (piano), Staatskapelle Berlin, Andris Nelsons
  4. Martha Argerich & Daniel Barenboim: Piano Duos
  5. Liszt: Piano Concertos
    Daniel Barenboim (piano), Staatskapelle Berlin, Pierre Boulez
  6. Beethoven – Violin Sonatas Nos. 7 – 10 etc.
    Pinchas Zukerman (violin) & Daniel Barenboim (piano), with Jacqueline du Pré (cello)
  7. Elgar: Symphony No. 2 in E flat major, Op. 63
    Staatskapelle Berlin, Daniel Barenboim
  8. Wagner: Tristan und Isolde
    Siegfried Jerusalem (Tristan), Waltraud Meier (Isolde), Marjana Lipovsek (Brangaene), Matti Salminen (König Marke), Falk Struckmann (Kurwenal), Johan Botha (Melot), Peter Maus (Hirt), Roman Trekel (Steuerman), Uwe Heilmann (Stimme eines jungen Seemanns), Berlin State Opera Chorus, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Daniel Barenboim
  9. Bruckner: Complete Symphonies
    Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra & Male voices of the Rundfunkchor Berlin, Ernst-Senff-Chor, Daniel Barenboim
  10. Verdi: Requiem
    Anja Harteros (soprano), Elīna Garanča (mezzo), Jonas Kaufmann (tenor), René Pape (bass), Orchestra e coro del Teatro alla Scala, Milan, Daniel Barenboim



Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 – No.15 in our collection

Gustav Mahler (07.07.1860 – 18. 05. 1911) was an Austrian composer and conductor, noted chiefly for his 10 symphonies and various songs with orchestra, of which Das Lied von der Erde is perhaps the best loved. As a composer his work forms an important bridge between the 19th century Austro-German tradition and the modernism of the early 20th century.

Iván Fischer (born 20 January 1951) is a Hungarian conductor who found greatest with the Budapest Festival Orchestra, which he co-founded with fellow Hungarian conductor Zoltán Kocsis back in 1983. This orchestra that was created out of dissatifaction with the “great” orchestras now, ironically, finds itself in the top ten orchestras according to Gramophone magazine.

Ivan Fischer and his Budapest musicians have recorded many of the Mahler symphonies to great acclaim and this recording of Symphony No. 4 is no exception. Overall this a very refined performance, with an exceptionally enjoyable third movement and some heavenly singing from the soprano Miah Persson in the finale. The sound quality captured by Channel Classics’ engineers is quite exceptional. A 5 star SACD (or hires download) without doubt.

Stream on Qobuz or buy from Presto Classical.

View the other works in our collection.

Death of Dmitri Hvorostovsky announced

It is with great sadness that we bring you news of the death of the Siberian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky at the age of 55. Dmitri had fought a long battle with brain cancer before passing away peacefully, surrounded by his family, at a hospice facility near their home in London, UK.

Dmitri Hvorostovsky rose to fame after beating Bryn Terfel to win the Cardiff Singer of the World competition in 1989. He made his operatic debut in the same year and he went on to sing a range of roles in most of the great opera houses including the Met, the Royal Opera House and La Scala Milan. However it was the role of Eugene Onegin that he went on to make his own.

“His beautiful silken voice will always be heart- wrenchingly gorgeous.” – Sarah Connolly

Stream on Spotify or purchase from Presto Classical

Saint-Saëns’ violin works from Tianwa Yang

Saint-Saëns: Works for Violin and Orchestra

Tianwa Yang (violin), Gabriel Schwabe (cello),  Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Marc Soustrot (conductor)

Tianwa Yang is a Chinese classical violinist who was born in Beijing in 1987. She recorded her first CD in 2000, at the age of 13, with a recording of Paganini’s Caprices for solo violin, Op. 1 Nos. 1-24, on the Hugo Classical label. Since 2004 she has been a recording artist on the Naxos label.

Tianwa Yang

Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) is one of the most extraordinary musical prodigies in the history of Western music. He was a very talented pianist and a composer of some note. As a young man Saint-Saëns admired such progressive figures as Wagner and Liszt, but as he aged he adopted a more conservative approach and tended to dislike the innovative developments of Debussy, Stravinsky and other similar composers. There can be little doubt that the main influence on Saint-Saëns compositions for violin was Pablo de Sarasate.

Having previously recorded four CDs of works for violin and orchestra by Pablo de Sarasate¹, which we regarded very highly, it is perhaps not surprising to find Tianwa Yang turning to the violin works of Saint-Saëns. On this newly released CD Tianwa Yang is joined by Marc Soustrot and the Malmö Symphony Orchestra. Marc Soustrot and the Malmö Symphony Orchestra have already recorded, the orchestral music of Saint-Saëns on 3 CDs and those readings were most pleasing.

This latest disc contains several popular works such as the frequently recorded Havanaise, Op. 83 and the Introduction & Rondo capriccioso, Op. 28, which acts as a showcase for the soloist. Tianwa Yang also performs the relatively popular Romance in D flat major, Op. 37 and La Muse et le Poète, Op. 132 for which she is joined by the cellist Gabriel Schwabe. There are also some comparative rarities on this disc such as the opening Caprice andalous, Op. 122 and the Romance in C major, Op. 48, for violin and orchestra both of which are well worth hearing.

The disc fully lives up to expectations with some accomplished violin playing from Tianwa Yang and Marc Soustrot proves to be a sympathetic partner guiding the Malmö Symphony Orchestra through these works. The sound of the soloist and orchestra is well captured by the Naxos engineers. Altogether an enjoyable listen.

iClassical rating: 

Stream on Spotify or purchase from Presto Classical.

¹ Recently repackaged as a bargain 4CD set.