News

Elisabeth Söderström

Obituary: Elisabeth Söderström, soprano

The Swedish soprano Elisabeth Söderström died on November 20 in Stockholm at the age of 82. She maintained a career of over a half a century during which her vocal and dramatic versatility enabled her to...

James Jolly
Stephen Layton

Stephen Layton appointed City of London Sinfonia artistic director and principal conductor

The City of London Sinfonia is to replace the late Richard Hickox with two principal conductors. Stephen Layton, director of music at Trinity College, Cambridge, will take over as artistic director and principal conductor, while clarinettist Michael Collins is also appointed principal conductor. Both have signed three-year contracts beginning in September 2010.

Charlotte Smith
Rattle resigns to EMI

Sir Simon Rattle renews EMI recording contract

Sir Simon Rattle has renewed his recording contract with EMI Classics which will extend their relationship past the 30 year mark. Over the next four years Rattle and his orchestra, the Berliner Philharmoniker, will make 12 recordings. These will include the complete Nutcracker ballet by Tchaikovsky, a programme of American music which includes a new commission by Wynton Marsalis, and a disc that includes Schoenberg’s Begleitungsmusik zu einer Lichtspielszene (“Music for a Cinematographic Scene”).

James Jolly
Paul Hamlyn Foundation Awards 2009

16th Paul Hamlyn Foundation Awards for Artists honour three composers

This year’s batch of Paul Hamlyn Foundation Awards for Artists include three Composer Awards. Chris Batchelor, Tansy Davies and Philip Jeck each receive £45,000 spread over three years, ensuring they have “the freedom to develop their creative ideas and to contribute to their personal and professional growth”.

Charlotte Smith
Sir Simon Rattle conducts the Berlin Philharmonic

Free Berliner Philharmoniker digital concert

To mark the start of a US tour by the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sir Simon Rattle, a live concert is being made available at no cost tonight (Monday, November 9) at 7pm GMT (8pm EST). Simply log onto the website of the orchestra’s exclusive partner Deutsche Bank ( http://www.db.com ), register and you can watch and listen to Brahms’s Third and Fourth Symphonies live from the orchestra’s Berlin home, the Philharmonie.

James Jolly
Filming the Philharmonia (photo: Ben Ealovega)

Walk-through Stravinsky

Are you into The Rite of Spring ? Well, thanks to the Philharmonia and Esa-Pekka Salonen you could, quite literally, step inside this still-astounding score. A new multi-media celebration of Stravinsky’s 1913 ballet score is running on London’s South Bank until November 15 at the Bargehouse, Oxo Wharf, which allows you to walk through the orchestra as it plays: a quite amazing experience.

James Jolly
Gramophone - November 2009

November issue of Gramophone out now

Tenor Mark Padmore and pianist Paul Lewis are two British musicians at the height of their powers. In our cover story, they discuss their searing collaboration in Schubert's tragic song-cycle Winterreise - the resulting recording, released...

Gramophone
Helen Watts, contralto

Obituary: Helen Watts, contralto

Helen Watts was a singer of that best British school which, with the initial gift of a fine voice, learns the business and does the job, is hardly ever known to miss a beat or fluff an entry, and ends up being taken for granted. To the record-buying public she was a regular and reliable part of the LP scene, and when given a chance – as in the premier recording of Vaughan Williams’ Riders to the Sea – she rose to the occasion nobly.

Gramophone
Ian Wallace, bass-baritone

Obituary: Ian Wallace, bass-baritone, has died aged 90

Although encouraged by his father, the MP Sir John Wallace, to study law, Ian Wallace seemed destined for the stage. His abilities were noticed while he was at Cambridge, and after serving in the Royal Artillery during World War II, he began to perform, at first for the benefit of fellow servicemen who had been wounded or invalided out of the army.

Gramophone
Valery Gergiev

EMI to produce its first instant recording

From fast food to Twitter, today’s culture is one of instant gratification, and EMI Classics is determined not to be left in the cold. In a first for the label, two live performances will be recorded tonight and tomorrow, prepared in the foyer, and sold to audience members as they leave the event.

Charlotte Smith

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