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Verdi - Aida
Conductor Paolo Arrivabeni leads the Orchestre et Choeurs de l’Opéra Royal de Wallonie in this performance of Aida. With 56 operas to his credit, this was his first time to conduct "Aida", although it is one of the most often performed operas around the world. Celebrated by both the public and critics, the Maestro enjoys a very successful international career. His wide repertoire revolves around the works of Italian composers of the 19th century. Aida is an opera in four acts by Giuseppe Verdi, based on the Italian libretto of Antonio Ghislanzoni. The plot is set in the so-called "Old Kingdom", presumably of Egypt. Aida revolves around intertwined story lines and love affairs complicated by political interference. Main characters Aida, an Ethiopian princess who has been enslaved by the Eqyptians, Egyptian military commander Radamès, whose feelings for her conflict with his political loyalty and the King's daughter Amneris, who is in love with Radamès. The opera was commissioned by Cairo's Khedivial Opera House and premiered there on 24 December 1871. Soloists of this interpretation, recorded 2014 in Liège, Belgium are Kristin Lewis, Massimiliano Pisapia, Nino Surgulazde, Mark Rucker, Luciano Montanaro, Roger Joakim, Chantal Glaude and Giovanni Iovino.
Gala from Berlin 2002 - What a Wonderful Town
"What a Wonderful Town" was the motto of the traditional New Year's Eve Concert at the Berlin Philharmonie. The Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Sir Simon Rattle along with some of the most sought-after singers in this field including Thomas Hampson, Kim Criswell, Simone Sauphanor and Karl Daymond perform Leonard Bernstein's 'Wonderful Town'. 'Wonderful Town' was the second of Bernstein's trio of 'New York' musicals begun in 1944 with 'On The Town' and completed with 1957's 'West Side Story' and is a love letter to New York in the '30's. Bernstein's score combines witty pastiches of various popular musical styles of the 30s - Conga!, Swing! - and some of his most winning ballads. The program also includes George Gershwin’s songs ‘My Man’s Gone Now’, ‘Ask Me Again’ and ‘Fascinatin’ Rhythm’.
Memory of a Concert
In 2006, Gidon Kremer and Martha Argerich set out on tour performing solos and duets by Bartók und Schumann. The last of the concert series at the Berliner Philharmonie has been recorded for this film, featuring a rare solo performance by Martha Argerich. A concert film with personal and moving commentary by Gidon Kremer. Program: Schumann's Violin Sonata No. 1, Op. 10, Violin Sonata No. 2, Op. 121; Kinderszenen, Op. 15; Bartók: Violin Sonata No. 1 Sz 75; Violin sonata No. 2 Sz 76.
Shostakovich - Symphony No. 9, Op. 70
The Lucerne Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Neeme Järvi presents the world premiere of Rodion Shchedrin's Double concerto for cello, piano and orchestra. Soloists are Martha Argerich (piano) and Mischa Maisky (cello). The concert program features Antonín Dvořák's Scherzo capriccioso Des-Dur Op. 66, B 131, Shchedrin's aforementioned Double concerto "Romantic Offering", César Franck's Sonata for piano and cello in A, and Dmitri Shostakovich's Symphony No. 9, Op. 70. This première performance was recorded at the Culture and Congress Centre of Lucerne, KKL, on February 9, 2011. The Lucerne Symphony Orchestra is orchestra-in-residence at KKL Luzern. The Lucerne Symphony Orchestra is Switzerland’s oldest symphony orchestra and has won an international standing that extends far beyond its home base.
CMIM - Semi-final
South Korean tenor Mario Bahg (1990) performs 'Cujus animam gementem' from Gioachino Rossini's Stabat Mater, 'È la solita storia del pastore' from Francesco Cilea's opera L’arlesiana, and 'Je crois entendre encore' from Georges Bizet's Les pêcheurs de perles, during the semi-finals of the Concours musical international de Montréal, 2018.
Carl Gottlieb Reißiger - Oratorio David
The name of Carl Gottlieb Reissiger (1798-1859), a contemporary of Richard Wagner’s, seems to have been forgotten. Fortunately, the Belgian chamber choir Vox Mago remedies this: it performs Reissiger’s only oratorio, ‘David’ (1851). The work is based on the Bible, but Reissiger’s ‘David’ is not the Biblical king of Judah. The comforting choirs in this oratorio soothe David, who bemoans his own mistakes as well as the death of his predecessor. Reissiger’s ‘David’ follows the model of Beethoven’s ‘Christus am Ölberge’, Op. 85, which was at the root of the 19th-century Romantic oratorio tradition. As in Beethoven’s composition, the role of ‘David’ is sung by a tenor, whose solos alternate between despair and calm determination. Beethoven and Reissiger both use fugues as conclusion for the choral parts of their compositions.
Celebrate St. Patrick 2020
Celebrate St. Patrick 2020 was filmed in March 2020 at Saint Patrick's Cathedral in Armagh, Northern Ireland. Choirs from far and near seized the opportunity to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and perform with local Irish musicians for the congregation of this historic cathedral. The concert merges sacred music, traditional Irish instruments and music from the Irish diaspora. Performances from the highly acclaimed Voices of Ireland, jig dancers, and the rendition of Christ Be Beside Me by the combined choirs are among the many emotional highlights. Readings from the words of St. Patrick and footage of Ireland's glorious landscape make Celebrate Saint Patrick 2020 a feast for the ears and eyes!
Concerts in Quarantine - Liszt, Chopin et. al
Russian pianist Zlata Chochieva performed live at Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin on April 13, 2020. The program opens with a selection of Felix Mendelssohn's Songs Without Words: Op. 67, No. 5 and No. 2. Then she performs Frédéric Chopin's Etudes Op. 10, No. 3 and No. 5 and Opus 25, No. 2, No. 6, No. 7 and No. 10. The program continues with Franz Liszt's Mephisto Waltz No. 2, S. 515, and four pieces by Sergei Rachmaninoff: his Canon in e minor, Prelude in F, Op. 2, 'Fragments', and 'Oriental Sketch'. The recital closes with Nikolai Medtner's Canzona Serenata in F minor, Op. 38 No. 6.
Mozart - Symphony No. 35
Conrad van Alphen conducts Sinfonia Rotterdam in a performance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Symphony No. 35 in D Major, K. 385, recorded at the Nieuwe Kerk, The Hague, in 2020. Van Alphen founded Sinfonia Rotterdam in 2000. Under his passionate leadership, this orchestra has developed into one of the Netherland’s best-known orchestras. Mozart’s Symphony No. 35 is also known as the “Haffner Symphony”. In 1782, the Haffner family from Salzburg commissioned Mozart to write a new piece on the occasion of the ennoblement of Sigmund Haffner. Mozart agreed, and initially composed a serenade before recasting it as a symphony a few months later: the “Haffner Symphony”. One of his revisions was the addition of more instruments in the first and last movement, resulting in a fuller sound. The symphony consists of four movements: Allegro con spirito, Andante, Menuetto, and Presto.
Beethoven - Symphony No. 3, Op. 55
This live performance marks Fabio Luisi’s very first concert with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra in DR Koncerthuset, Copenhagen. Beethoven’s fantastic Eroica symphony is a milestone in classical music, and with Stravinsky’s mighty Symphony of Psalms and Strauss’ virtuosic Don Juan, this production fully demonstrates the unique chemistry between Fabio Luisi and the orchestra of which he today is the celebrated Chief Conductor. This performance was recorded in 2017.
The German network ZDF called Scandale “classical music for the pop age,” a great way to describe the piano collaboration between German Alice Sara Ott and Francesco Tristano from Luxembourg. The program radiates energy and joy as these two artists go on stage to perform together. This recording of a performance at the Heidelberger Frühling of 2015 - a renowned festival for contemporary classical music - brings all that and more to the table. On the program are piano arrangements of Maurice Ravel’s Bolero and La Valse, “Nuages” and “Fêtes” from Debussy’s Trois Nocturnes and Igor Stravinsky’s famous ballet music from “Le sacre du printemps.” The duo also introduces a composition by Tristano himself, titled “A Soft Shell Groove Suite.”
Modena - City of Belcanto
Solo Finals - Liszt Competition 2017
Alexander Ullman (1991, United Kingdom) performs Liszt’s Études d'exécution transcendante, No. 11 Harmonies du soir (S139/11), Nuages gris (S199), Bagatelle sans tonalité (S216a) and Grandes Études de Paganini No. 6, Quasi presto, (S141/6) during the Solo Finals of the 11th International Franz Liszt Piano Competition, held in TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht, in 2017. The competition actively presents, develops, and promotes piano talents from around the world. In doing so, it has become one of the prominent gateways to the international professional classical music scene for young musicians. The International Franz Liszt Piano Competition was founded in 1986 in the Netherlands and has since built a reputation as one of the world’s most prestigious piano competitions.
Strauss - Symphonische Fantasie, Op. 65
For the Anniversary Gala, Cleveland Orchestra Music Director Franz Welser-Möst led a program featuring pianist Lang Lang as soloist. The program offered works touching on more than a century of Viennese musical traditions with Lang Lang performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 24. The pianist made his Cleveland Orchestra debut in 2000 at Blossom Music Center and most recently performed with the Orchestra in 2014 at Severance Hall. The remainder of the concert features the Wiener Blut Waltzes, Opus 354 by Johann Strauss, Jr., the Fantasie from R. Strauss' Die Frau ohne Schatten and Ravel's La Valse, which dramatically evokes the changing artistic worlds between the 19th and 20th centuries. Recorded at Severance Hall, Cleveland on September 29th, 2018.
Monteverdi - Vespro della Beata Vergine
In 1610, Monteverdi gave his Vespers for the Virgin in Mantova, before conquering Saint-Mark’s Basilica in Venice. It is the first great religious masterpiece of baroque. It has remained one of the key works in the universal musical heritage. After the genius of Orfeo (1607), the Vespers use its opening fanfare again and confirm Monteverdi as the main composer of his time. Sir John Elliot Gardiner conducted this work for the first time in 1964 and recorded it twice. It is for this work that he founded the Monteverdi Choir, one of the best choirs in the world. For their 50th anniversary in 2014, they perform Monteverdi’s masterpiece Vespro della Beata Vergine at the Chapelle Royale de Versailles in France. The Monteverdi choir performs this masterpiece with the English Baroque Soloists and Les Pages du Centre de musique baroque de Versailles. The soloists are Silvia Frigato, Emanuela Galli, Raffaele Pè, Krystian Adam, Nicholas Mulroy, Gareth Treseder, Alexander Ashworth, and Robert Davies.
Shostakovich Symphony No. 5, Op. 47
The Royal Flemish Philharmonic ‘deFilharmonie’ specializes in the historically informed performance of various classical music styles. deFilharmonie’s unique character is shaped by several conductors, such as the Dutch conductor Edo de Waart and the Flemish conductor Philippe Herreweghe. Given his specific background and experience, Herreweghe focuses on the music of the Romantic era and before. The orchestra holds an unusual position in the Flemish music landscape due to its unique nation- and worldwide concert series. Concerts at the Musikverein in Vienna, the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam have drawn crowds. This concert was performed at Antwerp’s Queen Elisabeth Hall under the baton of the Dutch conductor Jaap van Zweden. On the programme is the Symphony No. 5 in D minor by Dmitri Shostakovich.
Rocamadour 2020: Sonatas by Fauré and Franck
Over the course of eleven days in August 2020, the French town of Rocamadour hosted the fifteenth edition of Festival de Rocamadour, a music festival dedicated to sacred music from the classical, baroque, and romantic periods. On August 26, the French violinist Renaud Capuçon and his compatriot pianist Guillaume Bellom performed an intimate concert at the atmospheric, medieval Basilique Saint-Sauveur. On the program are Gabriel Fauré's Sonata No. 1, Opus 13 (1876), and César Franck's Sonata for violin and piano (1886).
Concerts in Quarantine: Songs and piano works
Olena Tokar (soprano) and Igor Grishin (piano) perform a lieder and piano program, recorded at Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin on March 30, 2020. The program opens with five songs by Pauline Viardot: 'Two Roses', 'On Georgia's Hills', 'Evening Song', 'The Gardener', and 'The Mermaid's Song'. Grishin performs some solo piano works: Franz Schubert's Impromptu, Op. 90, Nos. 2 & 3, and Alexander Scriabin's Piano Sonata No. 4, Op. 30. The program continues with Antonín Dvořák's Gypsy Songs, Op. 55, and closes with four songs by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Op. 57 No. 1, Op. 63 No. 2, Op. 38 No. 2, and Op. 47 No. 6.
Trios: Tchaikovsky, Op. 50 & Shostakovich, Op. 67
The Zadig Trio was born when two childhood friends from France, Boris Borgolotto (violin), and Marc Girard Garcia (cello), joined musical forces with American pianist Ian Barber. Today, they have received several international prizes at international competitions in France, Italy, Austria, and the USA. In this 2017 concert from the Auditorium St Pierre des Cuisines in Toulouse, France, the trio interprets several pieces by Russian composers. The programme features Pyotr Tchaikovsky's Piano Trio in A minor, Op. 50 and Dmitri Shostakovich's Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, for violin, cello and piano, Op. 67.
Documentary: Ginandrea Noseda
Although the great Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi applied unsuccessfully to study at the Milan Conservatory, this renowned college of music was eventually named after him. Today, the ‘Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi’ counts numerous successful musicians among its alumni: from Giacomo Puccini, Alfredo Catalani, Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Luigi Einaudi and Daniele Gatti, to Gianandrea Noseda. The acclaimed conductor Noseda (*1964) is one of the most important conductors of his generation. Recently, he taught a conducting masterclass at his alma mater for promising students from all over the world. For three days, Noseda joined forces with a hand-picked group of students to work on a varied concert programme. This documentary shows you these young, talented musicians rehearse compositions by Mozart, Tchaikovsky, and Stravinsky under the enthusiastic guidance of Maestro Gianandrea Noseda himself.
Waldbühne 2001: Spanish Night
This wonderful concert at Berlin's Waldbühne brought the audience to its feet. Conductor Plácido Domingo and the Berlin Philharmonic share the stage with soloists Sarah Chang (violin) and Ana Maria Martinez (soprano) in several performances of popular Spanish compositions. Sarah Chang's fleet-fingered rendition of Pablo de Sarasate's technically demanding dances is impressive, to say the least. With her unmatched technique and her unique musical sensitivity, Chang's performance is a joy to the ear. Ana Maria Martinez's passionate and warm vocal timbre are perfectly suited to the spirit of the Zarzuela melodies. Among the pieces performed in this broadcast are Emmanuel Chabrier's España, Manuel de Falla's El sombrero de tres picos, Pablo de Sarasate’s Carmen Fantasy, and Johan Strauss II's Spanish March.
Händel - Dettingen Te Deum (HV 283)
Patrick Debrabandere conducts the Vox Mago choir in a performance of The Dettingen Te Deum (HWV 283), a canticle composed by George Frideric Handel, in 1743. On June 27, 1743, the British army and its allies, under the command of King George II and Lord Stair, won a victory at the Battle of Dettingen, over the French army. On the King's return, a day of public thanksgiving was appointed, and Handel was commissioned to write a Te Deum. Soloists are Bart Uvyn (alto), Denzil Delaere (tenor), Helena Maes (soprano), and Joris Stroobants (bas). The Vox Mago is made up of a group of enthusiastic and dynamic singers. The perfromance is recorded at the Onze-Lieve-Vrouw Presentatiekerk in Gent in 2018.