Features

Chailly's Beethoven cycle on Decca
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Beethoven from Riccardo Chailly – all is revealed

Riccardo Chailly’s view of the Beethoven symphonies has been a well-kept secret, but now in a single well-coordinated gesture all is revealed. At concerts in Vienna’s Musikverein, Paris’s Salle Pleyel and London’s Barbican, Chailly and his Leipzig Gewandhausorchester will present all nine symphonies alongside five specially commissioned works that reflect their individual composer’s attitude to Beethoven’s symphonies.

Ernst: time to get acquainted with his music (image: Tully Potter Collection)
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The importance of being Ernst

The Baroque specialists have had it all their own way for too long. Ever since the 1930s when they first discovered Vivaldi, any composer who could dream up another variation on diddle-diddle-diddle has been the subject of exhaustive scholarly analysis and accorded any number of recordings. Forgotten names have been resurrected and put back on the pedestals which they occupied during their lifetime; moth-eaten manuscripts abandoned in obscure monastic libraries have been restored, edited and given new life. It’s been good for music, music lovers and musicologists.

Knudåge Riisager: the composer's humour is alive and well in Danish music
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Send in the Danes

‘We have the same sense of humour, the English and the Danes, don’t we?’ There’s a teetering pause. Backstage at the Symphony Hall in Aarhus, composer Bo Holten has me fixed with expectant eyes and a burgeoning grin. ‘That’s why we get along so well, isn’t it?’

Tito Gobbi - superb as Boccanegra
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Gramophone Top 10s - our mini-guides to the best classical recordings available on CD, DVD or to download

We all love lists, and we all love sharing our musical passions with our friends. Each week we'll respond to topical events, or to important anniversaries, with at least one new list – but we'll also try to be a little serendipitous and come up with some Top Tens that will open your ears to some great new music. And under each list we invite you to suggest recordings of your own to add to our reccomendations. Here are our tens (newest from the top).

Janáček: who would your musical blindspot be? (image: Tully Potter Collection)
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Hands up! Whose music do you really hate?

I’ve just been re-reading Amiscellany , the punningly-titled memoir by the broadcaster, administrator and critic John Amis which was published in 1985. I know John a little – one of life’s enhancers, he will celebrate his 90th birthday next year – and it has been rewarding revisiting his multi-layered, meandering career. He seems to have known and befriended every important figure in the classical music world from the early ‘40s onwards.

Arkivmusic.eu – a wealth of great recordings
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Celebrate the European launch of Arkivmusic

To mark the European launch on Septemeber 1 of the highly-respected and much-visited US website Arkivmusic, Gramophone is teaming up with Arkivmusic.eu to offer its readers a discount on all CDs and DVDs. And to make your choice even easier, we're giving you a preview of The Gramophone Classical Music Guide 2012 's guide to the essential recordings in up-to-date recommendations. Simply register and you will receive a 10 per cent discount on your first purchases from Arkivmusic.eu.

Beyond Beethoven – Philip Clark talks to Riccardo Chailly in October's issue
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Ludwig van – Beethoven's legacy 200 years on…

In the October issue of Gramophone , Philip Clark interviews Riccardo Chailly about the Beethoven symphonies to coincide with the Italian maestro's first recorded cycle, for Decca; here Philip explores how Beethoven has freed, intimidated, or simply infuriated, composers who followed...

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