Public Radio Market presents the best of the products featured on your favorite public radio programs.
Schubert: Works for Solo Piano, Vol. 1 by Barry Douglas
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New Classical Tracks: Getting to know Schubert
Classical MPR: Pianist Barry Douglas on the transformative power of education
Exclusive Chandos artist Barry Douglas, having produced two highly regarded discs of solo works by Brahms, now embarks on the complete solo piano works of Franz Schubert. This first volume features two large-scale works, the ‘Wanderer’ Fantasy and the Sonata in B flat major, alongside two Schubert songs transcribed by Liszt.
Homecoming, A Scottish Fantasy by Nicola Benedetti
New Classical Tracks: 'Homecoming, A Scottish Fantasy'
Nicola Benedetti presents a Scottish program for the year that sees Scotland in the limelight bringing together Scottish folk artists and a Scottish orchestra
Nicola Benedetti celebrates an important year for Scotland with an album of its most famous and best-loved music, featuring songs such as Loch Lomond, My Love is Like a Red Red Rose and more
The album also includes collaborations with leading Scottish folk musicians including well-known folk singer Julie Fowlis (whose voice can be heard on the Disney/Pixar hit film, Brave), along with Phil Cunningham (accordion) and Aly Bain (fiddle)
Nicola performs Bruchs much loved Scottish Fantasy with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
2014 is Scotlands year. In July, Glasgow hosts the Commonwealth Games. In September, the Scottish people will go to the polls in an Independence Referendum and the Ryder Cup comes to Scotland
Nicola Benedetti was born in Scotland and is fiercely proud of her Scottish roots. She is passionate about promoting music education and is a patron of Sistema Scotlands Big Noise project, a music initiative partnered with Venezuelas iconic El Sistéma.
Eventide by Voces8
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New Classical Tracks: Moments of Reflection
Voces8 make an extraordinary debut on Decca with Eventide. Eight young singers forming one perfect sound add a contemporary edge in stunning original arrangements from plainchant to Paul Mealor and from Saving Private Ryan to Emeli Sande?.
Eventide has wide-ranging appeal for a mass market. The album evokes the magical space between day and night, a time for unwinding, for finding the calm and solace we all seek. Eight perfectly-blended voices interwoven with haunting melodies for solo cello, harp and saxophone provide an immersive sonic experience which will soothe, beguile and inspire.
Evoking the spirit of Jan Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble’s chart-topping Officium,one of the most successful classical albums of the 90’s, Voces8 and saxophonist Christian Forshaw create their own captivating sound world with arrangements ofthe ancient Latin hymn Te lucis ante terminum and Tallis’s setting of the same text The album’s rich tracklist embraces everything from medieval plainsong to an uplifting transcription of John Williams’s “Hymn to the Fallen” from the Grammy Award®-winning soundtrack to Saving Private Ryan Also included are exquisite never-before heard arrangements of Emeli Sande?’s “Where I sleep” and Second Eve by rising star Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo, as well as Morten Lauridsen’s sublime O magnum mysterium and recent scores by Eric Whitacre and Royal Wedding composer Paul Mealor.
The group travel one million miles per year to give concerts and lead workshops all over the world, including war-torn and disaster stricken areas where they provide music as a form of solace.
ZOFORBIT: A Space Odyssey by ZOFO
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New Classical Tracks: Not Your Typical Piano Duet
In this third album from GRAMMY® nominated ensemble ZOFO, the critically acclaimed piano duo takes the listener on a metaphorical exploration of the galaxy with mesmerizing, outer space-themed duet works by four noted composers of the 20th and 21st centuries - Gustav Holst, George Crumb, David Lang and Urmas Sisask preformed on one piano - four hands.
Since joining forces as a professional duo in 2009, Eva-Maria Zimmermann and Keisuke Nakagoshi - ZOFO - have electrified audiences from Carnegie Hall to Osaka, Japan with their dazzling artistry and outside-the-box thematic programming for piano-four-hands. This prize winning Steinway Artist ensemble - one of only a handful of duos worldwide devoted exclusively to piano duets - is blazing a bold new path for piano-four-hands groups by focusing on 20th and 21st century repertoire and by commissioning new works from noted composers each year.
ZOFO’s debut album MIND MELD (DSL-92151), released by Sono Luminus in April, 2012, received a 2013 GRAMMY® Award nomination in the category of Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance. MOSH PIT (DSL-92167), ZOFO’s second release, put the duo’s considerable keyboard skills to the test in exciting, high energy, evocative dance-themed duets from an all American group of noted 20th century composers.
ZOFORBIT, ZOFO’s third album with Sono Luminus, takes the listener on an intragalactic voyage through the Milky Way, with musical visits to the planets of our solar system, to bright stars of the galaxy, and back again. Estonian composer Urmas Sisask sets the mood with the other-worldly sounds of his composition The Milky Way, featuring innovative inside and outside the piano techniques that evoke a sense of the cosmos. The journey continues with a tour of Gustav Holst’s The Planets, and visits to the stars Alpha Centauri and Beta Cygni as musically envisioned by George Crumb in his one-piano-four-hands masterpiece Celestial Mechanics (Makrokosmos IV). The space exploration concludes with David Lang’s Gravity, which metaphorically coaxes the listener back to earth in slow-moving patterns of descending notes.
All the Things You Are by Leon Fleisher
New Classical Tracks: A Record of Reminiscences
Leon Fleisher–“the pianistic find of the century,” said Pierre Monteux–was born in San Francisco in 1928 and accepted into the studio of master pianist Artur Schnabel at age nine. Seven years later Fleisher made his New York Philharmonic debut, and in 1952, won the Queen Elisabeth competition, leading to a series of legendary recordings made with conductor George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. In 2014, Leon Fleisher, approaching his 86th birthday, completed the present recording, consisting largely of works for left hand, including one of the pianist’s specialities—Bach’s Chaconne, arranged for left hand by Brahms. The album also features works composed for Leon Fleisher by George Perle, Leon Kirchner, and Dina Koston as well as gorgeous renditions of favorites by George Gershwin and Jerome Kern. All the Things You Are is Leon Fleisher’s first solo album in nearly a decade, and is a testament to the enduring musicianship of a great artist.
The Silver Album by Anne-Sophie Mutter, Lambert Orkis
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New Classical Tracks: Expect the Unexpected
With this special 2-CD collection including world-premiere recordings of Previn and Penderecki and new recordings of Ravel and Massenet Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis mark 25 years of a level of artistic partnership that is rare, even in the highest echelons of concert performance
The celebrated violinist says: Meeting Lambert was a stroke of luck for me. It quickly became clear how perfectly we breathe and phrase together. With Lambert I can do anything.
It was in December 1988 that Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis gave their first joint recitals in America and immediately sensed that they shared a mutually sympathetic way of thinking about music which neither felt would ever change. For Anne-Sophie Mutter such an affinity is either there or it isn t. It s hard to put it into words (…) Ever since the two of them have explored the musical worlds of many different composers in a wonderful artistic partnership.
For Lambert Orkis, the question of how such a partnership between artists can survive for so long without even the faintest murmur of disagreement is very simple: We like one another, we like each other s playing and we like each other s company. This makes things a lot simpler, because we work very hard.
Of course, we talk to each other, but we say very little about interpretation. We talk about politics and religion or about her dogs and my cats and we never argue.
And about Anne-Sophie Mutter he says: Her playing is incredibly beautiful and well-informed, her taste absolutely sound, even in contemporary music. Anne-Sophie combines a very real delight in music with a spirit of adventure and an enormous passion for the matter in hand.
Schubert: String Quintet & Quartettsatz by Cypress String Quartet
New Classical Tracks: A Gift of Time
The Cypress String Quartet is a wonderful ensemble (Gramophone) whose extremely fine playing (Classical Reviewer) has lent itself to music of Dvorák and contemporary Americans on their recordings for AVIE. They now turn to core 19th-century fare, some of the greatest chamber music ever written: Schubert s single-movement Quartettsatz, and the composer s final chamber work, the enduring String Quintet, joined by eminent Canadian cellist Gary Hoffman. The Cypress elegant, clear signature sound lends itself perfectly to these two masterworks.
Dvorak and America by Kevin Deas, Benjamin Pasternack, Zhou Qian, Edmund Battersby, Michael Worfe
New Classical Tracks: Dvorak and America
The centerpiece of this programme is the first ever recording of the Hiawatha Melodrama, a concert work for narrator and orchestra designed to show the kinship between Dvorak’s New World Symphony and Longfellow’s poem The Song of Hiawatha, which Dvorak said had inspired him in the symphony. It takes music from the symphony, as well as passages from the American Suite and Violin Sonatina, and fuses them with the poem, which is recited by a bass-baritone. Also included is music by Arthur Farwell, who was influenced by Dvorak, and was a proponent of Native American music. This recording thus celebrates the crosscurrent of influences between the Czech composer and American music and culture.
Time For Three by Time For Three
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New Classical Tracks: Time for Three
The album showcases not only the trios melody-rich string weave but also its unique flair for collaboration. It was these compelling qualities that led Universal Music Classics to sign the trio as their first U.S. act to their newly branded label. Time For Three features tracks co-produced by Rob Moose from Bon Iver, Grammy-winning producer David Lai, critically acclaimed Steven Hackman and memorable pairings with pop singer-songwriter Joshua Radin, jazz saxophone icon Branford Marsalis, Decca s young cello star Alisa Weilerstein, ukulele ace Jake Shimabukuro, and folk-pop sister duo Lily & Madeleine.
Blanc by Angele Dubeau
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As Heard on Public Radio:
New Classical Tracks: Blanc by Angele Dubeau
Angele Dubeau’s new CD, ‘Blanc’, tells the violinist’s story of her fight against breast cancer. The music and the color it evokes contain messages of healing and hope.
Mendelssohn Adams Violin Concertos by Chad Hoopes
New Classical Tracks: Chad Hoopes
Chad Hoopes - Mendelssohn & Adams Violin Concertos (Naïve Records)
"I’ve always wanted to put Mendelssohn on my first album with orchestra because it’s a piece that I have played since I was so young," says violinist Chad Hoopes. "It was one I loved so much and one I felt I could contribute to the rich legacy that this piece already has to offer."
Violinist Chad Hoopes is 19 years old. He started playing Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto No. 2 in E minor 10 years ago, and he’s just recorded it with Kristjan Jarvi and the Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra. Chad was born in Naples, Fla., and he grew up in Minnesota where he was inspired early on by the Minnesota Orchestra. After taking part in the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Young Artist Program, he now studies in Kronberg, Germany.
When it comes to making music, Chad’s primary goal is to develop his own unique character. That’s one reason he paired the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with one by John Adams. Adams wrote his concerto for Jorja Fleezanis, the former concertmaster of the Minnesota Orchestra, who premiered this work the year Chad was born. “I think people might expect seeing a Mendelssohn and a Tchaikovsky concerto or a Mendelssohn and a Bruch violin concerto on the same album, but I didn’t want to put out another one of those recordings,” Chad explains. “It’s great, but for me it was not so exciting and so I thought to myself maybe something American because I’m American and I felt that was important. And also one of the most important things was to play something from a living composer. To keep music alive and to keep the next generation involved with music, playing music from a living composer is important. So I listened to a few things and listened to the Adams and didn’t fall in love with it at first but thought, ‘You know, this is something that could be really cool.’
"I ordered the score and spent maybe a month looking at it and playing some things and I called my manager and said, ‘Oh, I don’t think it’s possible, I don’t have a strong connection with the piece, it’s incredibly difficult’; I didn’t have hope for it. And my manager said, ‘Well, you know what? You’ve taken the time already. Why don’t you spend one or two more months with the piece, see if anything changes and if not, you’ll have time [to find something else].’ And so I spent those next couple of months looking at this piece and working on it. And I have to say, those two months were critical because I fell in love with the piece and I had this connection with it and it worked." Read More
Beethoven: Complete String Quartets, Vol. 2 by Quartetto di Cremona
New Classical Tracks: Capturing Beethoven’s futuristic music
Following the successful release of Volume I in the complete edition of Beethoven String Quartets with the ‘Quartetto di Cremona’, audite now continues the series. The choice of works for the second volume refers to two periods during which Beethoven turned away for good from the culture of music amateurs of the late eighteenth century. The Quartets Op. 59 of 1806, commissioned by Count Andrey Kirillovich Razumovsky, were written for Vienna’s most famous professional string quartet, led by Ignaz Schuppanzigh. Beethoven’s musical language is no longer balanced and well-seasoned, as that of his contemporaries, but is extreme in every respect: ruthless and with feeling, dramatically operatic and full of contrapuntal finesse. The ‘Quartetto di Cremona’ contrasts this work from Beethoven’s mature phase with his opus 127 of 1824. It is this work in E flat major with which the already deaf Beethoven began his series of late works, received by his contemporaries with alarm, but by posterity with admiration. For a long time after the dissolution of the ‘Quartetto Italiano’ in the 1980s, no Italian string quartets seemed to come forward to seek international renown. The four young musicians from Genoa, however, who formed the ‘Quartetto di Cremona’ following their studies in the violin making town of Cremona, have revived Italian string quartet playing. Since its foundation in 2000, the ensemble has developed into the best quartet of its country, and also into one of the most prestigious and imaginative quartets within Europe. This status is documented by the audite recording series of the complete Beethoven String Quartets which was started one year ago - a touchstone for all string quartets in its textual dimension, as well as in its technical demands.
Between Worlds by Avi Avital
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Classical MPR: New Classical Tracks: An Instrument Between Worlds
A genre-defying tour of the globe exploring the nexus between classical, popular and traditional music uniquely inhabited by Avi Avital and his magical mandolin.
From Bach to Bluegrass to Balkan Beats, the mandolin is the chameleon of the music world - every culture and musical genre features the mandolin or one of its close relatives - and Avi Avital is this beautiful instruments most charismatic, versatile exponent.
After the success of the Bach recording, Avi returns to again defy expectations with a selection of beautiful melodies and delightful dances from Europe, Central Asia, and the Americas, each with roots in popular folk traditions, arranged by some of the worlds greatest classical composers. The resulting dialogue between North and South, East and West, New and Old, Classical and Traditional - offers a captivating musical journey Between Worlds.
For this journey, Avi is joined by a host of special guests: from music legends such as Richard Galliano and Giora Feidman, to DG stars such as Catrin Finch, accompanied by a hand-picked ensemble of virtuoso friends from around the world. The joy is palpable, the colors and rhythms irresistible.
Repertoire highlights include the popular Monti Czardas, Bachianas Brasilieras (Villa-Lobos), Blochs spiritual Nigun, Spanish, Bulgarian, Romanian, Cuban and Georgian folk dances, and a very special Piazzolla tango.
Dvořák by Alisa Weilerstein
New Classical Tracks: Starting with a Rice Krispie Box
American cellist Alisa Weilerstein, described by the New York Times as one of the most exciting American cellists of the new generation, follows her critically acclaimed Decca debut recording of Elgars Cello Concerto with a vital new interpretation of Dvoraks Cello Concerto, coupled with some of his best-known melodies. This album captures the essential spirit of one of the greatest of all Romantic composers, reflecting Dvoraks deep-rooted love for his homeland.
Alisa Weilerstein joins forces with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra and its Czech Music Director, Jiri Bìlohlavek in a terrific and deeply authentic musical partnership. This radiant performance of the Cello Concerto was recorded in Pragues Rudolfinum, where Dvorak himself conducted the Czech Philharmonics inaugural concert in 1896. Other works on the album were recorded in the USA Dvoraks adopted second homeland.
Chopin Etudes by Jan Lisiecki
New Classical Tracks: Jan Lisiecki makes Chopin sing
The incredible Jan Lisiecki performs both cycles of Chopins virtuosic Etudes. This is the second Deutsche Grammophon release from the young Canadian pianist, and his first-ever studio recital album.
Chopins Etudes are among the most challenging and evocative pieces of all the works in the piano repertoire.
Jan Lisiecki has just finished recording the Etudes in the famous Koerner Hall of the Music Conservatory in Toronto. The Royal Conservatory has been involved in the training of many notable artists such as the pianists Glenn Gould and Oscar Peterson.