The Listening Room

James Jolly's weekly playlist of the best and most interesting classical recordings on Spotify, Apple Music and Qobuz

The Listening Room: Episode 30 (May 19, 2018)

The Listening RoomSat 19th May 2018

Concertos by Beethoven and Schumann, piano music by Rachmaninov and the expressive voices of Lucile Richardot and Cyrille Dubois

Just back from trade fair and conference, Classical:Next, in Rotterdam and full of admiration for the mouthwatering line-up of new releases scheduled for the coming months. But ’twas ever thus and this week’s playlist scoops up some recent recordings that have been my companions this week on the move - and it’s nice to be back home and playing them on rather more sophisticated and responsive speakers.

A couple of concertos this week including one that seems to be enjoying a modest vogue at the moment (not that I’ve ever heard it live): the piano concerto that Beethoven fashioned from his Violin Concerto. The pianist Dejan Lazić, who’s no stranger to the idea of annexing concertos for his own use (he made a rather enjoyable ‘Brahms Piano Concerto No 3’ from the Violin Concerto), has recorded the Beethoven with the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra and Gordan Nikolić. It’s a piece that’s worth hearing from time to time, and provides a few surprises along the way (I’ve never got used to the first-movement cadenza with all the timpani), and the finale works particularly well.
The Schumann Cello Concerto also receives a fine performance courtesy of Gabriel Schwabe with Lars Vogt’s Royal Northern Sinfonia the classy partners here - nicely recorded too. And still with Schumann, I’ve a pre-release track from the Schumann Quartet’s new album ‘Intermezzo’ which includes the Op 41 No 1 Quartet - the Scherzo is well worth a listen!
Boris Giltburg’s Rachmaninov piano concerto series for Naxos is proving a real treat and he’s reached the mighty Third Concerto (I may well include it next week), but it’s the coupling that I’ve been listening to a lot - the Corelli Variations, based on 'La folia', and played with wonderful poetry and a palpable sense of a musical journey being undertaken.
A few weeks ago I encountered the voice of Lucile Richardot, a slightly androgynous, rich mezzo-ish soprano. On her album ‘Perpetual Night’ she sings a selection of 17th-century airs and songs not only with beautifully enunciated English but with a real story-teller’s artistry. (Sébastian Daucé and Ensemble Corréspondences are her stylish partners here.)
Beethoven’s symphonies never lose their power and ability to surprise and delight and few offer more thrills than the Eighth - Martin Haselböck and his Orchester Wiener Akademie do it proud, with a terrific sense of energy but with a period-instrument bite that I enjoyed a lot (the coupling, by the way, is another version of that Beethoven piano concerto after the Violin Concerto!).
And, as tasters from a fine new recording from Stephan Macleod’s Gli Angeli Genève with Concerto Palatino and the Wrocław Baroque Orchestra, a couple of examples of sacred music from what was once a major musical centre, the then-German city of Breslau - now Wrocław in Poland. (The sleeve image is a period map which shows that not too far to the West of Wrocław is a town that went by the splendidly Addams family-ish name of Monsterberg.)
The Palazetto Bru Zane (the Centre de Musique Romantique Française), who have done so much to resuscitate some fine French music from the 19th century, have recently given us a recording of Fromenthal Halévy's La Reine de Chypre - Hervé Niquet directs with great dramatic feeling. It's superbly cast with Véronique Gens and the young Cyrille Dubois (whom I first encountered in John Nelson's Erato recording of Les Troyens) in the central roles. I've chosen them in the gorgeous Act 1 Romance and duet. 

Listen on:

SpotifyApple MusicQobuz

The tracks:

Beethoven Piano Concerto (after the Violin Concerto)

Dejan Lazić ; Netherlands Chamber Orchestra / Gordan Nikolić (Onyx)

Bütner O quanta in coelis laetitia

Concerto Palatino; Gli Angeli Genève; Wrocław Baroque Orchestra / Stephan Macleod (Claves)

Rachmaninov Variations on a Theme of Corelli

Boris Giltburg (Naxos)   

R Johnson Care-charming sleep

Lucile Richardot; Ensemble Corréspondences / Sebastian Daucé (Harmonia Mundi)    

Schumann Cello Concerto

Gabriel Schwabe; Royal Northern Sinfonia / Lars Vogt (Naxos)

Hilton The Judgement of Paris: Rise, princely shepherd

Lucile Richardot; Ensemble Corréspondences / Sebastian Daucé (Harmonia Mundi)

Schumann String Quartet No 1 - Scherzo. Presto

Schumann Quartett (Berlin Classics)  

Halévy La Reine de Chypre – Act 1, Romance and Duo

Véronique Gens; Cyrille Dubois; Paris Chamber Orchestra / Hervé Niquet (Palazetto Bru Zane)

Beethoven Symphony No 8 

Orchester Wiener Akademie / Martin Haselböck (Alpha)

Pacelli Sacrae cantiones: Dum esset rex

Concerto Palatino; Gli Angeli Genève; Wrocław Baroque Orchestra / Stephan Macleod (Claves)

 

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - The Listening Room

Gramophone Subscriptions

From£64/year

Gramophone Print

Gramophone Print

no Digital Edition
no Digital Archive
no Reviews Database
no Events & Offers
From£64/year
Subscribe
From£64/year

Gramophone Reviews

Gramophone Reviews

no Print Edition
no Digital Edition
no Digital Archive
no Events & Offers
From£64/year
Subscribe
From£64/year

Gramophone Digital Edition

Gramophone Digital Edition

no Print Edition
no Reviews Database
no Events & Offers
From£64/year
Subscribe

If you are a library, university or other organisation that would be interested in an institutional subscription to Gramophone please click here for further information.

© MA Business and Leisure Ltd. 2018