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 New Release Round-up, New Release Round-Up - 23rd November 2018

Today’s new releases include an album of Handel cantatas from two outstanding young French singers, a recital of Rachmaninov, Scriabin, Prokofiev and Ligeti from Yuja Wang, and the first professional recording of Arthur Sullivan’s oratorio The Light of the World, composed shortly before he began his long-term collaboration with WS Gilbert.

Sabine Devieilhe (soprano), Léa Desandre (mezzo), Le Concert d'Astrée, Emmanuelle Haïm

The young French soprano and mezzo join forces for the pastoral two-hander Aminta e Fillide, and take on a dramatic solo cantata apiece: Armida abbandonata for Devieilhe, and La Lucrezia for Desandre. Haïm and Le Concert d’Astrée also have a ‘solo’ of their own spot in the form of the Trio Sonata in B minor, HWV386.

Available Formats: 2 CDs, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Yuja Wang (piano)

Recorded at the Philharmonie’s Kammermusiksaal in June, Wang’s recital includes three Ligeti Études, Scriabin’s Piano Sonata No. 10, Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 8, and Études-Tableaux and Preludes by Rachmaninov; reviewing her London performance of the same programme a week later, the Financial Times praised her ‘technical ease, colouristic range and sheer power’, and Classical Source her ‘finesse, power and perception’.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Seong-Jin Cho (piano), Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Yannick Nézet-Séguin

Following his ‘unfailingly cultivated’ (BBC Music Magazine) account of Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1 and ‘riveting’ (The Guardian) Debussy album last autumn, the 24-year-old winner of the 2015 International Chopin Piano Competition records his first Mozart, complementing the D minor Piano Concerto with Piano Sonatas Nos. 3 and 12.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Charles Owen (piano)

Following two outstanding albums of Fauré and a ‘scrupulously executed’ (Gramophone) recording of the Bach partitas, the co-artistic director of the London Piano Festival performs the Klavierstücke Opp. 76 and 118, the two Rhapsodies, the Seven Fantasies Op. 116, and the Three Intermezzi Op. 117.

Available Formats: 2 CDs, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Zürcher Sing-Akademie, James Gaffigan

Rachel Harnisch, Ekaterina Semenchuk, Mauro Peter and Hanno Müller-Brachmann are the soloists on this early contribution to the celebrations for Beethoven’s 250th birthday in 2020; the orchestra’s Beethoven Project began last year with the complete piano concertos with Oliver Schynder. Also includes the Prisoners' Chorus from Fidelio and Brahms’s Nänie.

Available Formats: 2 CDs, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Chloë Hanslip (violin) & Danny Driver (piano)

The first two volumes of Hanslip and Driver’s Beethoven cycle (recorded from live Radio 3 broadcasts) have earned critical acclaim for their ‘playfulness and wit’ (BBC Music Magazine), ‘freshness and spontaneity’ (Classical Source) and ‘sophisticated partnership’ (Record Review); this final instalment includes the Kreutzer, and Sonatas Nos. 2 & 10.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Joseph Moog (piano)

Following acclaimed recitals of Scarlatti, Chopin, Tchaikovsky and Scharwenka on Onyx, the 2015 Gramophone Young Artist of the Year presents an all-French programme of Ravel’s Gaspard de la Nuit, Debussy’s Études pour piano, and the rare thirteenth ‘Étude retrouvée’ – composed in 1915 but only rediscovered in 1977.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Kammerorchester Basel, Riccardo Minasi

Premiered in the late 1740s and then lost for almost two centuries, Porpora’s colourful Christmas Oratorio tells the story of the Nativity through the allegorical figures of Peace, Humanity, Justice and Truth, performed here by Roberta Invernizzi, Terry Wey, Martin Vanberg and Marc-Olivier Oetterli; this album presents a comprehensive selection of highlights, including a Pastoral Symphony.

Available Format: CD

Natalya Romaniw, Eleanor Dennis, Kitty Whately, Robert Murray, Ben McAteer, Neal Davies; Kinder Children's Choir, BBC Symphony Chorus, BBC Concert Orchestra, John Andrews

Written shortly before the composer began to collaborate with WS Gilbert, Sullivan’s second full-scale oratorio met with a warm welcome at its premiere at the Birmingham Festival in 1873: The Observer praised its ‘clever ideas’ and ‘the beauty of the scoring’, whilst The Standard compared it favourably with Handel’s Messiah and Mendelssohn’s Christus. Here it receives a convincing and committed reading on its first professional recording.

Available Format: 2 SACDs

Emőke Baráth, Xavier Sabata, Giuseppina Bridelli, Luca Cervoni; Il Pomo d’Oro, Riccardo Novaro

Premiered in Rome in 1681 (shortly before the composer was killed by a hitman in revenge for one of his many seductions), the wit, energy and rapid-fire patter of Stradella’s final opera looks forward to Rossini’s great comic creations, but also contains music of real pathos; previous instalments of The Stradella Project have been praised for their ‘utmost clarity and engagement’ (Gramophone) and ‘lightness of touch’ (The Guardian).

Available Formats: 3 CDs, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC