Sharon Isbin has been a tireless commissioner of new work and her latest album Affinity is no exception with several recent compositions set alongside some old friends. It's Chris Brubeck's 18-minute Guitar Concerto-the longest and most colorful work here-that gives the album its title and opens proceedings. The concerto's name alludes to a shared "affinity" between composer and soloist, two musicians who thrive on exploring different styles. Like his father jazz legend Dave Brubeck, Chris Brubeck has his roots in jazz, but despite its plentiful toe-tapping syncopation, Affinity is most definitely a classical work. At its atmospheric heart the composer manages to incorporate one of his father's loveliest tunes-"Autumn in Our Town"-before a lilting Renaissance dance section ups the tempo to end with something akin to a wriggling Brazilian samba. Highly energetic, melodically infectious, and colorfully scored, Affinity is a real crowd pleaser, and with her immaculate and fleet-footed technique Isbin does it proud. The Maryland Symphony Orchestra under Music Director Elizabeth Schulze has just the right feel for this music and the excellent engineering ensures both textural clarity and a perfect balance.
It's 40 years since Leo Brouwer wrote his solo guitar work El Decameron Negro for Isbin, and although she's recorded it previously, her interpretation has only deepened with time. The three evocative instrumental "ballads" are inspired by African love stories infused with the musical sensibilities of Brouwer's native Cuba. Isbin is a natural storyteller and is in her element here, putting on a virtuoso display full of light, shade, and manual dexterity. Ditto Tan Dun's Seven Desires, an intriguing solo work that straddles-and fuses-the seemingly disparate worlds of the Chinese pipa and Spanish flamenco guitar. Antonio Lauro's charming Waltz No. 3 is here arranged for two guitars by former Isbin student and now regular duet partner Colin Davin. The disc concludes with Richard Danielpour's Of Love and Longing, three contrasting settings for voice and guitar of the Persian poet Rumi. Performed here with great warmth and sensitivity by Isabel Leonard, it crowns an album that should please fans of Isbin and of contemporary guitar music in general.
One would find it hard to beat the all-star line-up featured in The Cave of Wondrous Voice, a new, hour-long survey of vocal and chamber music by the California-based composer Mark Abel. David Shifrin, Carol Rosenberger, Hila Plitmann, and Fred Sherry headline the album but they're not its only stars. On the whole, The Cave of Wonderous Voice is smartly played and engineered. Abel's writing throughout is fluent and often genial. While certain spots in the Trio, particularly, might benefit from grittier moments to offset the diatonic ones, this is music of considerable expressive directness as well as charm.
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Composer, pianist, and conductor Michael Shapiro joins us to talk about the music on his latest disc, including his John Milton-inspired piano concerto entitled Archangel. In this action-packed work, Shapiro lays out the epic Biblical battle between good and evil as a metaphor for the challenges we all face in our daily lives (which includes the current coronavirus pandemic – something Michael recently fell victim to himself). Also on the disc: orchestral excerpts from an opera based on Federico Garcia Lorca, and a full-throttle realization for orchestra of the famous organ Toccata by French composer Charles-Marie Widor.
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There are a few guitarists who are almost instantly recognizable by their tone: Richard Thompson, Bill Frisell, Pat Metheny - and John Scofield. It's not that his sound is idiosyncratic, it's just that it's personal. There's some chorus in there, and just a touch of distortion to rough up the very edges. But it's also the notes he plays, and the way that the blues are never far from him no matter how complex the chord changes get. On his latest solo album he's joined by drummer Bill Stewart and bassist Steve Swallow. As the title suggests, the album is actually a tribute to Swallow, and consists entirely of the bassist's compositions. Scofield has said that when the two of them play together "sometimes… it's like one big guitar," and you can definitely hear that; you can also hear why Scofield likes Swallow's tunes so much ("they're grounded in reality, with cadences that make sense"). As discursive as the trio sometimes gets - this is an ECM jazz recording, after all - they never lose the thread of brilliant continuity that binds these wonderful tunes together. For all jazz collections.
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Voice of Hope is Camille Thomas's second album for Deutsche Grammophon. The Franco-Belgian cellist's program pays tribute to people's ability to triumph over adversity, create harmony in place of chaos, and overcome hatred with love. The album presents the world-premiere recording of Fazil Say's concerto Never Give Up, a response to terrorist attacks in Paris and Istanbul written for and premiered by Thomas, and also includes an exquisite selection of songs, prayers, and laments, Bruch's Kol Nidrei and Ravel's Kaddisch among them.
For June 30, Camille Thomas - Voice of Hope is the WFMT: Chicago 'Featured New Release'
"There is no denying the emotional expression and feeling of the music, the joy and exuberance transmitted, and at times it certainly lifts the spirits, but unless you have a taste for this style, a little goes a long way"
An intriguing release, this is really world music, drawing on Middle Eastern and Andalusian traditions, with guitarist and keyboard player Dave Soldier setting poems, mainly Hebrew and Arabic, to music. For this he uses traditional instrumentation with occasional elements of contemporary music and a sprinkling of jazz. There are jazz connections in the personnel – bassist Ratzo Harris played with Mose Allison and Betty Carter, trombonist Chris Washburne with Eddie Palmieri, and Soldier himself studied with Roscoe Mitchell. But apart from this, the link is minimal.
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Recently French composer and pianist Lucas Debargue breathed new life into the harpsichord sonatas of Domenico Scarlatti and presents works outside the standard piano repertoire. The Parisian pianist has already climbed the pinnacle of piano artistry with Beethoven, Liszt and Ravel and unleashed full-blown romantic thunderstorms with Schubert's A-minor Piano Sonata no. 14 and the madcap finale of Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit.
On the album, Debargue devotes himself completely to Domenico Scarlatti. He already played four of this Italian master's sonatas on his highly acclaimed début album. Germany's Der Spiegel waxed ecstatic: "Debargue's Scarlatti recalls his mighty predecessors. He displays the subtle touch and feeling once bestowed on these miniatures by Vladimir Horowitz and imparts new sound to Scarlatti's keyboard music. … Debargue touches the outer limits of expression between joylessness and rapture: one may find it overwrought, but it's never less than gripping. And then there's the gentle Glenn Gould touch."
Debargue joins us for this mini-episode of REMOTE with a couple words on some of his pandemic-projects, reading list, and the importance of emphasizing our similarities rather than differences. READ THE Q&A
Sony Music Masterworks today releases Not Our First Goat Rodeo, the long-awaited follow-up album to the GRAMMY Award-winning The Goat Rodeo Sessions, with Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, and Chris Thile.
In the fall of 1968, a sixteen-year old high school student named Danny Scher had a dream to invite legendary jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk and his all-star quartet to perform a concert at his local high school in Palo Alto, CA.
Blues Hall of Famer Bettye LaVette has decided to release her stirring rendition of "Strange Fruit" ahead of schedule as it says as much about the history of American racism and the state of the country today.
Guitarist John Scofield celebrates the music of his friend and mentor Steve Swallow in an outgoing and spirited recording, made in an afternoon in New York City in March 2019 - "old school" style as Scofield says, acknowledging that more than forty years of preparation led up to it.
Kiwis...win the ultimate opera fan prize, Pavarotti and Mozart / NOTED
Posted: June 11, 2019 12:00 AM
| By: Admin
Win double passes to Pavarotti and Mozart's Don Giovanni presented by the APO. CLICK HERE TO Enter to be in to win one of three prize packs: a double pass to the film Pavarotti, in cinemas June 13, and a double pass to Mozart's Don Giovanni, presented by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in association with NZ Opera, on July 19, 2019 at the Auckland Town Hall.
Funny, dark, earthy, witty, shocking, this all-embracing score has some of Mozart's most sublime music, some of his most catchy tunes, and – when the legions of Hell catch Don Giovanni in the end – music which, after 200 years is still terrifying. Giordano Bellincampi will lead the orchestra and a stellar cast of singers, infusing his innate sense of theatre for what promises to be a sensational opera in concert performance.
From the filmmaking team behind the highly-acclaimed documentary The Beatles: Eight Days A Week - The Touring Years, Pavarotti is a riveting film that lifts the curtain on the icon who brought opera to the people. Academy Award winner Ron Howard puts audiences front row center for an exploration of The Voice...The Man...The Legend. Luciano Pavarotti gave his life to the music and a voice to the world. This cinematic event features history-making performances and intimate interviews, including never-before-seen footage and cutting-edge Dolby Atmos technology.
To coincide with the theatrical release of the highly anticipated Ron Howard-directed documentary "Pavarotti," Decca Recordsreleases the original soundtrack, Pavarotti: Music From The Motion Picture. from Decca/UMG.
Pavarotti: Music from the Motion Picture draws from Pavarotti's rich recorded catalog and follows the arc of the film. It features selections from operas such as "Turandot," "La bohème," "Aida," "Tosca" and more as well as Italian songs and collaborations with friends such as Plácido Domingo, José Carreras ("‘O sole mio"), U2, Brian Eno, Passengers ("Miss Sarajevo"), and others. Touchingly, the complete recording of Puccini's "Donna non vidi mai," which Pavarotti dedicated to Princess Diana, is included. In addition to a special unreleased song with Andrea Bocelli, the soundtrack also features Pavarotti's duet of "Ave Maria" with Bono, available for the first time commercially. The song, recorded live during the 2003 "Pavarotti & Friends for SOS Iraq" benefit concert in Modena, Italy, is available now for streaming and as an instant grat download with digital pre-order.
To coincide with the theatrical release of the highly anticipated Ron Howard-directed documentary "Pavarotti," Decca Recordsreleases the new 3-CD best of collection titled Pavarotti: The Greatest Hits from Decca/UMG.
The complementary releases both feature previously unreleased music and superstar duets with the likes of Bono, Elton John, James Brown, Lou Reed, and more.
Pavarotti's incredible repertoire can be explored in depth with the new three-disc/digital best of collection, Pavarotti: The Greatest Hits, which serves as a companion to the soundtrack and film. The anthology features 67 of the world-renowned tenor's most well-known recordings and collaborations and includes the best of his "Opera Arias," "Italian Songs & Sacred Arias" and"Great Duets." Fittingly opening with his iconic performance of "Nessun dorma," the "Opera Arias" disc spans the opera legend's entire career and includes beloved performances from "La bohéme," "Rigoletto," "Pagliacci," "Tosca," "Carmen" and"Madama Butterfly." More than 20 of Pavarotti's most powerful works including "O Sole Mio," "Caruso," "Volare," "O Holy Night," "Mama" and"Funiculì, funiculà" are collected together on "Italian Songs & Sacred Arias."
Pavarotti 50 Greatest Tracks commemorates Luciano Pavarotti's 50th anniversary with Decca Records, and an unforgettable legacy of recorded music from one of the greatest voices of our time. This definitive collection encompasses iconic Pavarotti selections, including ‘Nessun Dorma,'‘Caruso,' ‘La Donna E Mobile,'and ‘Granada,' to incredible duets with fellow superstars Frank Sinatra, Bono, Eric Clapton and Sting. Numerous milestones in the late-opera star's unprecedented career are captured here, including the first ever recording of Pavarotti's voice. The historic recording of the aria from La Bohème, ‘Che gelida manina' (‘Your tiny hand is frozen'), has been lying dormant in the archives for 50 years, only now to be unearthed by Pavarotti's widow, Nicoletta Mantovani Pavarotti, re-mastered and made commercially available for the first time. The 50 Greatest Tracks will be available October 22nd in the U.S. on Decca.
16 New 'ON' this week: 46 Total
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