Few new recordings of such canonical works as Beethoven symphonies can claim status as true events these days, but Joshua Bell's first recording as Music Director of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields is just that. Bell leads the London orchestra in Beethoven's Symphonies No. 4 and No. 7 – from the violin. He bothconducts and plays from the concertmaster chair, sometimes contributing to the fabric of sound with his instrument; other times lifting his bow to exhort and emphasize. On February 12 2013, Sony Classical releases the Beethoven recording, which follows Bell and the Academy's lauded version of Vivaldi's Four Seasons from 2008. Classics Today gave that album high praise, pointing how it "scorches and sizzles. . . Bell and his first-rate partners make beautiful music out of Vivaldi's conceptions."
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