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Latest News: Classical, Recording of the Week

 Recording of the Week, Handel's Rodelinda from Harry Bicket and The English Concert

by Katherine Cooper

Social distancing is no barrier to superb ensemble-playing on this terrific new recording of Handel's 1725 opera, with Lucy Crowe in the title-role and Iestyn Davies as her estranged husband Bertarido.

 Recording of the Week, Ombra Compagna from Lisette Oropesa

by Katherine Cooper

The Cuban-American soprano delivers drama and delicacy in equal measure on this collection of Mozart concert arias, with Il Pomo d'Oro on scintillating form under Antonello Manacorda.

 Recording of the Week, Alina Ibragimova performs Paganini's Caprices

by David Smith

The violinist releases the results of a uniquely ambitious "lockdown project" – a barnstorming new account of Paganini's fiendish Caprices, recorded in the late spring of 2020.

 Recording of the Week, François-Xavier Roth conducts Beethoven's Eroica Symphony

by James Longstaffe

Les Siècles and François-Xavier Roth return to the music of Beethoven with a dramatic, illuminating account of the Third Symphony, coupled with an energetic performance of an overture by Méhul.

 Recording of the Week, Vaughan Williams from Antonio Pappano and the London Symphony Orchestra

by David Smith

Pappano takes on perhaps Vaughan Williams's two most challenging symphonies, in live recordings given a heightened emotional intensity by the circumstances of their performance.

 Recording of the Week, Stravinsky & Eötvös from Pablo Heras-Casado and the Orchestre de Paris

by Katherine Cooper

The Spanish conductor delivers a very Gallic Rite of Spring, whilst Isabelle Faust is bewitched and bewitching on the world premiere recording of Péter Eötvös's 'Alhambra' Concerto.

 Recording of the Week, Lise Davidsen in Beethoven, Wagner and Verdi

by Katherine Cooper

The powerhouse Norwegian soprano is in expansive, radiant voice for Wagner’s Wesendonck-Lieder and arias from Fidelio, Otello, La forza del destino, Medea, and Cavalleria rusticana with Sir Mark Elder and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

 Recording of the Week, A Mozart postscript from Rachel Podger

by David Smith

Rachel Podger and Christopher Glynn bring to life a selection of musicologist Timothy Jones’s thoughtful completions of fragmentary Mozart works, offering a variety of plausible perspectives on what might have been.

 Recording of the Week, Strauss Lieder from Sandrine Piau and Daniel Behle

by Katherine Cooper

The French soprano brings an uncommon freshness and flexibility to the Four Last Songs with the Orchestre Victor Hugo Franche-Comté, whilst Behle and his regular recital-partner Oliver Schnyder revel in the composer's coruscating attack on publishers in the rarely-recorded Der Krämerspiegel.

 Recording of the Week, French Piano Duets from Paul Lewis and Steven Osborne

by Katherine Cooper

In a true meeting of musical minds, the two superb pianists team up once again for a delectable programme of miniatures by Fauré, Poulenc, Stravinsky, Debussy and Ravel.

 Recording of the Week, Osmo Vänskä conducts Mahler's Tenth Symphony

by James Longstaffe

The Minnesota Orchestra and their Music Director give a tumultuous, emotional account of Mahler's final, unfinished symphony, in the performing version by Deryck Cooke.

 Recording of the Week, Biber's Requiem from Vox Luminis

by David Smith

Lionel Meunier's ensemble explore a time of religious and musical flux in Europe, with an album centred around Heinrich Biber's Requiem and less-heard works by his contemporaries.

 Recording of the Week, Ludovic Tézier sings Verdi

by Katherine Cooper

The French baritone is on spine-tingling form in a high-octane programme of arias from operas including La forza del destino, Otello, Don Carlos, and Falstaff.

 Recording of the Week, Violins of Hope

by Katherine Cooper

Instruments previously owned by Holocaust survivors and restored by the Weinstein family sing with a special power in Schubert, Mendelssohn, and a new work by Jake Heggie which tells their stories.

 Recording of the Week, Andris Nelsons conducts Bruckner's Second and Eighth Symphonies

by James Longstaffe

The Gewandhausorchester and Andris Nelsons continue their Bruckner cycle with sublime, lyrical performances of the Second and Eighth Symphonies.

 Recording of the Week, John Wilson conducts English music for strings

by James Longstaffe

Sinfonia of London and conductor John Wilson present their latest stunning album of music for string orchestra by Britten, Bridge, Berkeley, and Bliss.

 Recording of the Week, Behzod Abduraimov plays Debussy, Chopin and Mussorgsky

by Katherine Cooper

The Uzbek pianist is beguiling in Children's Corner and the 24 Preludes Op. 28, and offers the virtual tour of one's dreams in Pictures at an Exhibition.

 Recording of the Week, Donizetti's Il Paria from Opera Rara

by Katherine Cooper

Sir Mark Elder conducts a scintillating account of Donizetti's 1829 opera about religious persecution in sixteenth-century India, starring Albina Shagimuratova, René Barbera, and Misha Kiria.

 Recording of the Week, Elmas Piano Concertos from Howard Shelley and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra

by David Smith

David enjoys the latest instalment in Hyperion's inexhaustible series, featuring the earliest-known piano concertos by an Armenian composer.

 Recording of the Week, Verklärte Nacht from Edward Gardner and the BBC Symphony Orchestra

by Katherine Cooper

Schoenberg's masterpiece is framed by works for voice and orchestra (also on the theme of 'transfigured night') by Franz Lehár, Oskar Fried, and Erich Korngold.