Skip to main content

 New Release Round-up, New Release Round-Up - 2nd August 2019

New releases 2nd August 2019Today’s new releases include Die Zauberflöte from Baden Baden (with Rolando Villazón taking a leaf out of Plácido Domingo’s book and taking on a baritone role), two English warhorses from Andrew Litton and the Bergen Philharmonic, and two projects exploring nineteenth-century arrangements of orchestral music aimed at the domestic market: David Owen Norris and friends tackle Cramer, Hummel and Clementi’s reimaginings of Mozart for ‘Jupiter Ensemble’, whilst Serbian-American pianist Ivan Ilić unearths solo transcriptions of Haydn symphonies by the tenor and conductor Carl David Stegmann.

Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Andrew Litton

Litton has recorded both works here before (his 1988 recording of the Enigma Variations was praised in Gramophone for exuding ‘character without eccentricity’), but this album marks his first recorded foray into English repertoire with the Norwegian orchestra, of which he was Music Director from 2003 until 2015; the Elgar was recorded towards the end of his tenure, whilst the Holst dates from 2017.

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

David Owen Norris (piano), Katy Bircher (flute), Caroline Balding (violin), Andrew Skidmore (cello)

Featuring arrangements of Piano Concerto No. 21 by Hummel and Johann Baptist Cramer, Clementi’s transcription of the Jupiter Symphony, and Hummel’s reduction of the Overture to Die Zauberflöte, this album aims to recreate Mozart as it would have been experienced in a nineteenth-century drawing-room

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

Ilić discovered these transcriptions of Haydn symphonies through a chance encounter in a Cologne supermarket, when a friend of his struck up a conversation with a fellow shopper who had been left an eclectic collection of sheet-music by an elderly neighbour; these arrangements of Symphonies Nos. 44, 75 and 92 were made by Carl David Stegmann (1751 – 1826), who had a distinguished career as a tenor, though it’s unclear whether they were ever intended for public performance.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC

Duo Dorado: Hazel Brooks (violin), David Pollock (harpsichord/organ)

Born in 1660, the Moravian composer and viol virtuoso Gottfried Finger spent much of his working life in London, and was a court musician for James II before embarking on a freelance career; the thirteen sonatas here demonstrate a wide variety of influences, from homages to Corelli and Biber to shades of Purcell and occasional nods to the composer’s homeland.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC

Klaus Florian Vogt, Christiane Karg, Rolando Villazón, Franz-Josef Selig, Albina Shagimuratova; Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Yannick Nézet-Séguin

Some interesting casting on this sixth instalment of this Mozart opera cycle with Nézet-Séguin, recorded live in Baden Baden last summer: Villazón drops down to baritone territory to take on the role of Papageno whilst Tamino is sung by acclaimed Wagnerian Klaus Florian Vogt, who appeared at Bayreuth as Lohengrin and Walther just weeks after the recording. Franz-Josef Selig and Christiane Karg (who sang Osmin and Susanna earlier in the series) return as Sarastro and Pamina

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

Ulster Orchestra, Howard Shelley

The 1918 tone-poem which Stanford composed to commemorate the members of the Royal College of Music who lost their lives in the Great War is the closing work on this album, which also includes the Mendelssohnian Fairy Day (scored for female chorus and small orchestra), A Welcome March, the Overture in the Style of a Tragedy, and the ‘Solemn March and Heroic Epilogue’ Verdun (which the composer orchestrated from his own Eroica Sonata for organ).

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

Haochen Zhang (piano), Lahti Symphony Orchestra, Dima Slobodeniouk

This is the debut concerto album from the 29-year-old Chinese pianist, who took the Gold Medal at the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2009; reviewing his 2017 recital of Schumann, Liszt, Janáček and Brahms on BIS, Gramophone praised his ‘lightness, transparency and directness’ and ‘polished passagework’.

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

Hera Hyesang Park, Marianna Pizzolato, Rachel Kelly, Kenneth Tarver; Münchner Rundfunkorchester, Keri-Lynn Wilson

Premiered in 1814 at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice and set in sixteenth-century Poland, Sigismondo contains music which Rossini subsequently recycled for several operas (including Il barbiere di Siviglia and La cenerentola) as well as material from his earlier successes such as Il Turco in Italia and L’Italiana in Algeri.

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

Miklós Spányi (harpsichord)

It’s over two decades since the Hungarian harpsichordist, fortepianist and musicologist began his odyssey through the complete keyboard works of CPE Bach (a project that’s been described as ‘one of the most valuable surveys of keyboard music by any composer of any period’ by MusicWeb), and as the finishing-line approaches he turns his attention to some of the composer’s earliest works, many of them written when he was still living in his father’s Leipzig home.

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

Steven McRae (Crown Prince Rudolf), Sarah Lamb (Baroness Mary Vestsera) Royal Opera House, Koen Kessels

Filmed at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden last year, this staging of MacMillan’s ballet sees Steven McRae tackling one of the most challenging roles in the repertoire for a male dancer shortly after a ten-month sabbatical due to injury, and covering himself in glory in the process: the Financial Times reported that ’the 32-year-old Australian star blazed as brightly as ever…, mapping the stage with gyroscopic chains of turns and matching an unusually lusty band of male soloists leap for leap’.

Available Format: DVD Video

Steven McRae (Crown Prince Rudolf), Sarah Lamb (Baroness Mary Vestsera); Royal Opera House, Koen Kessels

LPCM 24-bit Audio

5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio

Picture Format: 16:9 Anamorphic

Available Format: Blu-ray