We've just compiled a Spotify playlist for our January 2014 magazine. Listen to Christian Tetzlaff and Lars Vogt in Schumann's First Violin Sonata, Gramophone's Recording of the Month, one which Harriet Smith says 'quite simply wipes the floor with the competition'. Other Gramophone Choices to sample include the Grieg Piano Concerto from Nikolai Lugansky and Kent Nagano, Saint-Saëns's First Cello Concerto from Gautier Capuçon and Lionel Bringuier, Bach from Mikhail Pletnev, César Franck's Prélude, Choral et Fugue from Hannes Minnaer and the Prologue from Verdi's Simon Boccanegra in the new Decca recording with Thomas Hampson and Joseph Calleja.
Also in the playlst are Jelly Roll Morton, 'the Father of Jazz', the late Sir John Tavener's Lalishri played by Nicola Benedetti and Bach's First Partita from Kit Armstrong (subject of this month's session report). Gustav Leonhardt is our January 'Icon' and Philip Kennicott celebrates his art – listen to a Couperin harpsichord suite. Michael Tilson Thomas conducts the LSO in Robin Holloway's Third Concerto for Orchestra (Geraint Lewis discusses Holloway's music in our regular 'Contemporary Composers' feature).
Rob Cowan and David Theasher discuss the celebrated RCA Toscanini Verdi Requiem recording in 'Classics Reconsidered' – listen to the 'Dies irae' to understand why RC calls the performance 'explosive'. James Jolly selects 10 scenas, solo cantatas and concert arias in 'The Specialists Guide to …' and opts for the celebrated Schwarzkopf/Brendel/Szell recording of Mozart's concert aria Ch'io mi scordi di te - listen to it complete in the playlist. And to end with a bang rather than a whimper, 'The Gramophone Collection' focuses on Borodin's popular Second Symphony – Carlos Kleiber gets the palm, and you can hear why with a complete performance.