WAGENAAR: Sinonietta. Frühlingsgewalt. Elverhöt. Amphitrion. Le Cid.
Nordwestdeutsche Phlarmonie Orch/Antony Hermus, cond
CPO 777 033 TT: 55:26
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VILLA-LOBOS: Symphony No. 10 "Amerinda" (Sumé, Father of Fathers)
Leonard Neiva, baritone; Saulo Javan, bass; Sãn Paulo Chorus and Orch/Isaac Karabtchevsky, cond.
NAXOS 8.573243 TT: 60:47
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MOZART: Violin Concerto No.4 in D, K. 218. Violin Concerto No. 1 in B flat, K. 207. Violin Concerto No. 3 in G, K. 216. Violin Concerto No. 5 in A, K. 215. Violin Concerto No. 2 in D, K. 231. Sinfonia Concertante in E flat, K. 164.
Rachel Barton, violin; Academy of St, Martin in the Fields/Sir Neville Marriner, cond.
CEDILLE 2317 (2 disks) TT: 67:35 & 79:24
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SAARRIAHO: Quatre Instants. Terra Memoria For String Orchestra. Émilie Suite.
Karen Vourc'h, soprano; Strasbourg Phlharmonic Orch/Marko Letonja, cond.
ONDINE 12553 TT: 71:13
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Dutch composer Johan Wagenaar (1862-1941) was popular in his native land and the great Concertgebouw Orchestra often performed his music; Willem Mengelberg even recorded thE Cyrano de Bergerac Overture Several years ago, this site mentioned a fine recoding of his Frithjof's Meerfahrt and Concert Overture, Op. 11 (REVIEW) About five years ago, Decca released a very important. CD devoted to the composer with Riccardo Chailly and the Royal Concertgebouw (Decca 425 833), fortunately still in the catalog.CPO is doing their bit for the Wagenaar cause; here now is the second disk in their series of orchestral works, containing music listed above. As always, the music is bright, inventive and always colorfully orchestrated. These performances are superb, the recorded sound is excellent. If you are looking for relatively unknown quality music, here it is.

This site already has mentioned two recordings of the fascinating Symphony No. 10 by Villa-Lobos, one conducted by Gisèle Ben-Dor (REVIEW) another version directed Victor Pablo Pérez (REVUEW), Now we have a superb new recording from Naxos, This music is the composer's masterpiece, a one-hour work for soloists, chorus and large orchestra, composed in 1954 to commemorate the anniversary of founding of Saõ Paulo. Brazilian folk tunes are used, and the scoring is rich with percussion. The five sections are The Earth and its Creatures, War Cry, Turnpichuna,: scherzo; The Voice of the Earth and The Appearance of of Father Anchieta; and a final Poco allegro. This recording is based on a new edition by Editors Criadores collaborating with the Academia Brazileira de Musica. In this version, the part originally written for tenor is sung by the chorus. This is a magnificent performance of a major choral work of the 20th Century. The Saõ Paulo orchestra and chorus do total justice to this music, and the recording, made February 2-13, 2013, is superb sonically. Complete texts are provided. An outstanding issue!


Rachael Barton Pine (b. 1974) is a magnificent violinist who started playing the violin when only three, and appeared as soloist with the Chicago Symphony when only ten. She also is a courageous survivor. Her career was flourishing in 1995 when she was severely injured in a train accident resulting in loss of both legs. Valiantly she survived this and was able to resume her career. And she already has made memorable recordings including one of the best ever of the Brahms concerto. Now she has this splendid 2-disk set of all of Mozart's concertos as well as the Sinfonia Concertante, and it is a winner. The Mozart recordings were made August-September 2013 in Air Lyndhurst Studios in London with with Andrew Keener as producer. He has captured a rich, resonant, well-balanced sound. Sir Neville Marriner continues to amaze; he was almost ninety when these recordings, but there is plenty of spirit and drive in these performances. Another distinction is that Pine plays her own tasteful cadenzas in the concertos. This is an outstanding issue in every way.

About four years ago, this site mentioned an enchanting disk of music of orchestral music of Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho (REVIEW). That disk featured a cello concerto, Mirage for soprano and cello, and the orchestral work Orion, all fascinating works, rather mysterious and featuring the composer's distinctive orchestration. This new CD features two lengthy works for soprano and orchestra, the first a set of four songs (Longing, Torment, Perfume of the Instant, and Echoes). The second consists of music from Émilie, an opera about the remarkable tempestuous life of Marquise Émilie duChaeeiet (1706-1749) who was a scientist, mathematician and physician, as well as a lover of Voltaire. . Terra Memoria, a 17-minute work for string quartet, is a sombrero work dedicated to "those departed." The soprano soloist is Karen Vourc'h who has a successful career notably in French opera. She manages the difficult intervals and wide range of this music dmirably. This is challenging music for most listeners, and it has been recorded in excellent sound. Texts are provided in French and English.

R.E.B. (February 2015)