Archive | March, 2013

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Dame Myra Hess new release box-set on Hyperion, Complete Solo & Concerto Studio Recordings

Posted on 31 March 2013 by admin

Dame Myra Hess  (25 February 1890 – 25 November 1965) was a British pianist. She was most renowned for her interpretations of the works of Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart and Schumann, but had a wide repertoire ranging from Domenico Scarlatti to contemporary works. She gave the premiere of Howard Ferguson’s Piano Sonata and his Piano Concerto. This Hyperion box-set contains, for the first time, all the studio recordings she made from her first visit to the studio in 1928 to her final LP in 1957. Though Hess professed to hate recording (much preferring to play live), she did set down many wonderful performances, none greater than those of Beethoven’s late sonatas Op.109 and Op.110, and so, you heard the truly classics of gramophone.

Complete Solo & Concerto Studio Recordings

Price: $38.84

4.6 out of 5 stars (4 customer reviews)

13 used & new available from $26.79

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Amazing bargain box-set of Otto Klemperer on EMI, Brahms, Wagner, and more

Posted on 31 March 2013 by admin

The Box-sets  is EMI Classics’ celebration of the 40th anniversary of German conductor Otto Klemperer’s death. They pays tribute to the incomparable conductor with the release of an extensive edition of 11 luxurious yet affordably-priced boxsets. Two new sets devoted to operas by Mozart, Wagner and Strauss are available this March.

5-CD collection sees Otto Klemperer lead the Philharmonia and New Philharmonia orchestras in compelling performances of works by Wagner and Richard Strauss.

Wagner: Operatic Highlights

Price: $16.99

4.4 out of 5 stars (6 customer reviews)

18 used & new available from $10.23

4-CD collection of Brahms recordings. The set features all four symphonies as well as the Academic Festival Overture and Tragic Overtures and the Haydn Variations, and the famous Ein deutsches Requiem.

Otto Klemperer- Brahms: Symphonies / Overtures / Deutsches Requiem

Price: $13.60

4.7 out of 5 stars (20 customer reviews)

34 used & new available from $8.97

6-CD set presents a comprehensive survey of Klemperer s renowned conducting of concertos, the Mozart Horn Concertos, his superb series of orchestral works by Beethoven, piano Concertos of Liszt No. 1 and Schumann, concertos by Brahms

Concertos – Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Liszt, Brahms Klemperer Legacy

Price: $23.88

4.4 out of 5 stars (7 customer reviews)

30 used & new available from $17.60

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Bigger Bach Set,about 300 collections more than 14 hours of Bach, Amazon now $0.99

Posted on 30 March 2013 by admin

This is a very  nicely organized and comprehensive collection of Bach’s work. Only $0.99, truly a great buy. It’s 14 hours of Bach, recorded from 1950 to the mid 1970s. The Bigger Bach Set includes the most extensive single release of the Bach Guild recordings of Bach’s cantatas yet released. Since the Bach Guild was founded in 1950 with the purpose of recording all of Bach’s cantatas, that goal runs through the label, and through the branches of the tree of artists and engineers that the early founders of The Bach Guild worked with.  Seymour Solomon never came close to his goal of recording all of Bach’s cantatas – but this goal was achieved by the European label that was started by the first Viennese employees of Vanguard, including Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Gustav Leonhardt. This “Bigger Bach Box” contains the St. Matthew’s Passion in its entirety (78 tracks), and more…Track 1: BWV 903; Track 2: BWV 948; Tracks 3-5: BWV 971; Tracks 6-11: BWV 992; Track 12: BWV 106; Track 13: BWV 911; Tracks BWV 14-19: 814 Tracks BWV 20-26: BWV 815; Tracks 27-33: BWV 140; Tracks 34-40: BWV 4; Tracks 41-46: BWV 122; Tracks 47-52: BWV 133; Tracks 53-64: BWV 243; Tracks 65-68: BWV 1014; Tracks 69-72: BWV 1015; Tracks 73-76: BWV 1016; Tracks 77-80: BWV 1017; Tracks 81-84: BWV 1019; Tracks 85-89: BWV 1019; Tracks 90-167: BWV 244 (Matthew’s Passion); Tracks 168-170: BWV 1032; Tracks 171-173: BWV 1020; Tracks 174-177: BWV 1013; Tracks 178-181: BWV 1035; Tracks 182-183: BWV 1033; Tracks 184-187: BWV 1034; Tracks 188-196: BWV 202; Tracks 197-201: BWV 209; Tracks 202-205: BWV 51; Tracks 206-213: BWV 80; Tracks 214-224: BWV 11; Tracks 225-256: BWV 988; Tracks 257-267: BWV 249; Track 268: BWV 50; Tracks 269-279: BWV 70; Track 280: BWV 53; Track 281: BWV ; Track 282: BWV 54; Track 283: BWV 244; Track 284: BWV 55; Tracks 285-286: BWV 54 Track 287: BWV 248; Track 288-293: BWV 169.

Bigger Bach Set

Price: $2.99

4.5 out of 5 stars (71 customer reviews)

1 used & new available from $2.99

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John Eliot Gardiner’s thinking of Bach, his music, and the word of God

Posted on 30 March 2013 by admin

English conductor John Eliot Gardiner is conducting a “Bach marathon” at the Royal Albert Hall, London SW7, on Monday. It will be broadcast live on Radio 3.

We do not listen,” Martin Luther was known to have complained, “even when the whole world and all creatures cry out to us and God is addressing us with his promises.” For Luther, the Bible was not merely text, a book to be read silently, but living sound, or more precisely, “voice” – to be heard and listened to, and a ringing endorsement of music’s role to express, adorn or enhance the word. JS Bach, who devoted much of his working life to setting music to biblical texts, forged a unique synthesis – between his music and the word of God. For us today it is easy to be put off by the lurid imagery we find in Bach’s anonymous cantata librettos. The experience can indeed be disquieting, yet surely no more so than with the equivalent in art? If we can accept without qualms the horrors on display in the paintings of Hieronymus Bosch or the gruesome etchings of Goya and not recoil, why should we have problems accepting Bach’s way of clothing these unappealing words in music? For him, the two were indissolubly linked: he is in deadly earnest in probing the human condition, even at its murkiest, and every bit as intent as Goya was later on to rationalise the meaning of life. Get beyond the literal meaning of the individual words he is setting and it really is the music that counts. You might need to brace yourself against the periodic harangues, for Bach will never shirk an opportunity to box his listeners’ ears in the interests of bearing witness to the truth – of what he sees to be tawdry or reprehensible in human behaviour. This thought came to me at the start of our – that is, the Monteverdi choir’s – Bach cantata pilgrimage back in Christmas 1999, when I first visited Buchenwald, less than five kilometres from Weimar where we were due to perform Bach’s Christmas Oratorio. George Steiner describes Buchenwald – there up in the hills overlooking this most cultured and civilised city – as “hell made immanent”. With that visit imprinted on our minds, we could sympathise with Bach in his minatory depiction of human nature as flawed. Though these are not his own words, mankind is “filth, stench, ashes and clods of earth”, just as the 20th-century concentration and death camps were “the transference of hell from below the earth to its surface”. Yet as we gathered to launch our pilgrimage, we recognised that Bach’s music is one of the touchstones of civilisation – to be treasured every time we hear or recreate it. Its refusal to be silenced is overwhelming testimony to the strength and resilience of the human spirit. Our search for meaning, for answers to these intractable puzzles and contradictions, drew us together in the act of performing Bach’s music on that occasion and all through that year, and has strengthened since then every time we get together to perform his music – just as we will be doing on Monday. Bach can be witty, facetious, sardonic or just plain glum – it depends on his mood at the time. But give him trumpets and drums, and, as we all know from the Mass in B minor, there is no other composer before or since who can match the sheer thrill and zest of his festive music: the way it makes your spirit soar – vigorously martial one moment, transcendent the next, giving us an inkling or glimpse of how the angels might sound if only we could hear them play. The same is also true of his motets and cantatas. No other composer risked so much, encouraging his chosen performers – singers, trumpeters, oboists, violinists – to have their fling, their moments of virtuosic elation in the midst of rational order. You might heave a sigh of regret when the final cadence brings you back down to earth, but at the same time you know you have just been on a wild excursion with an amazing master of the musical stratosphere. In moments like these – and there are dozens of them scattered across the works we have chosen to perform on Monday – you know what Nietzsche meant when he wrote “music is something for the sake of which it is worthwhile to live on earth”. Bach’s best vocal writing is all about helping his listeners to understand what choices they have: showing them heaven and then focusing on the real world and the available ways of dealing with it in terms of attitude and conduct. And when it comes to consolation, no one knew better than him how to deal with personal loss or to cushion the assaults of grief. By drawing together in the closing chorale all the layers of exegetical gloss he has given to the devotional themes in the course of a cantata, Bach is able to bring things back to the here and now of his listeners’ concerns – to a sane present. The audience at the Royal Albert Hall will be invited to join in the singing of the Easter Chorale (BWV 4). His use of the chorale as a summation and as a thread running all the way through an individual cantata is one of his most brilliant and productive devices. It can be traced back to his childhood roots when as a treble he first sang Luther’s hymns in the same church in Eisenach and probably on the very same spot where Luther himself had once stood and sung as a boy. Luther had quietly commandeered the folksongs of his day, transforming them into congregational hymns, turning what was a basic and easily approachable musical form into an enduring doctrinal tool, never more so than in his Easter hymn, “Christ lag in Todesbanden”, which Bach clothed in music of unforgettable dramatic force in his cantata of that title. In the course of his cantatas, Bach explored hundreds of different ways to highlight the chorale tune – with or even without words – like the gold or polychrome colouring in an illuminated manuscript that medieval scribes gave to important words. By classical

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