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Blant annet Mozarts fiolinkonserter, Erik Saties pianomusikk, Bach orkester- og cellosuiter, kammermusikk fa Hindemith og mye annet.

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Image Complete Violin Concertos
Kristóf Baráti, violin
Hungarian Chamber Orchestra

Hungarian violinist Kristóf Baráti is recognised as one of the leading violinists of his generation. He plays with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Mariinsky, WDR Sinfonieorchester, London Philharmonic, and conductors like Gergiev, Dutoit, Jurowski, Masur, Pletnev, Fischer, Temirkanov.

His extensive discography for Brilliant Classics led to great critical acclaim: “..Baráti is out of the top drawer. With intensity of sound, unbridled athleticism and searing leaps into the stratosphere which send a tingle down the spine” (Gramophone), “Masterful, probing, meditative, it rang with a rare sense of authenticity, and almost majestic scope” (Washington Post). “He is on the order of magnitude greater than any other violinist I’ve encountered in at least 10 years” (Fanfare on the Beethoven violin sonatas, with Klára Würtz, piano).

On this 2 CD set Baráti plays the complete works for violin and orchestra of Mozart: masterful, strong, alternating great vitality and tenderness, vigour and beauty. He himself conducts the excellent Hungarian Chamber Orchestra.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Piano Music
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Orchestral Suites
This generously filled CD presents the complete Orchestral Suites (Overtures) by JS Bach.Bach's Suites count among his most popular and most frequently performed works, they are quintessential Bach: majestic, noble, tender and full of energy. They contain some of Bach's evergreens: the Air from the 3rd Suite and the Badinerie from the 2nd Suite.Played by the Virtuosi Saxoniae conducted by trumpetist/conductor Ludwig Guttler, modern instruments in Historically Informed Performance Practice, the best of both worlds.


kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Cello Solo Suites
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Chamber Music for Clarinet
For this release, clarinettist Davide Bandieri is joined by a superlative group of musicians, all determined to shine a light on some of Hindemith’s most sensitively scored chamber music. As a keen amateur clarinettist himself, Hindemith composed for the instrument throughout his life. This repertoire therefore takes us on a journey right from his early works in the 1920s – when the composer was influenced by the ailing conservative composer Arnold Mendelssohn – to the mid 1950s, when his music had been strongly shaped by Schoenberg’s ideas about tonality. Characteristically for Hindemith, much of his clarinet repertoire is Hausmusik – written for a domestic setting rather than public performance. A sense of intimacy can therefore be heard alongside the composer’s typical wit. The Musikalisches Blumengärtlein is one of Hindemith’s many parody pieces, with tongue-in-cheek comic effects in its unusual instrumentation and original movement names like the punning ‘Canon (for shooting)’. Throughout his life, Hindemith was determined not to let his music become part of the ‘routine’ of professional musicians. He was careful to keep his compositions light, and to compose for all sorts of instruments and genres, leaving us with a fascinating legacy. The musicians on this album are all experienced interpreters of chamber music; several, including Davide Bandieri, have long played with the prestigious Lausanne Chamber Orchestra. The Quartetto Savinio, who join Bandieri for the Quintet Op.30, have been described as the ‘one worthy heir to the Quartetto Italiano’ (L’Unità). The pieces on this double-CD are evidence of Paul Hindemith’s love for the clarinet, an instrument of which he was a keen amateur player and for which he wrote a considerable amount of music. The Clarinet Sonata, Quartet and Quintet were intended for the concert hall, while the other pieces were written for amateurs to be played in more private settings, Hindemith’s mission being to create approachable music for as many people as possible. In all these works Hindemith’s particular style shines through: from the strict neo-classicism, the “Neue Sachlichkeit” to vigorous expressionism, all sharing his joy of invention and creation. Played by Italian master clarinettist Davide Bandieri, who played solo clarinet in the Lucerne Festival Orchestra and Mahler Chamber Orchestra conducted by Claudio Abbado. For this recording he secured the collaboration of such eminent instrumentalists as pianist Matteo Fossi, violinist Duccio Ceccanti and cellist Vittorio Ceccanti. Recorded in Perugia, Italy, in May, June and October 2016. Contains liner notes and biographies of the artists. For this release, clarinettist Davide Bandieri is joined by a superlative group of musicians, all determined to shine a light on some of Hindemith’s most sensitively scored chamber music. As a keen amateur clarinettist himself, Hindemith composed for the instrument throughout his life. This repertoire therefore takes us on a journey right from his early works in the 1920s – when the composer was influenced by the ailing conservative composer Arnold Mendelssohn – to the mid 1950s, when his music had been strongly shaped by Schoenberg’s ideas about tonality. Characteristically for Hindemith, much of his clarinet repertoire is Hausmusik – written for a domestic setting rather than public performance. A sense of intimacy can therefore be heard alongside the composer’s typical wit. The Musikalisches Blumengärtlein is one of Hindemith’s many parody pieces, with tongue-in-cheek comic effects in its unusual instrumentation and original movement names like the punning ‘Canon (for shooting)’. Throughout his life, Hindemith was determined not to let his music become part of the ‘routine’ of professional musicians. He was careful to keep his compositions light, and to compose for all sorts of instruments and genres, leaving us with a fascinating legacy. The musicians on this album are all experienced interpreters of chamber music; several, including Davide Bandieri, have long played with the prestigious Lausanne Chamber Orchestra. The Quartetto Savinio, who join Bandieri for the Quintet Op.30, have been described as the ‘one worthy heir to the Quartetto Italiano’ (L’Unità). The pieces on this double-CD are evidence of Paul Hindemith’s love for the clarinet, an instrument of which he was a keen amateur player and for which he wrote a considerable amount of music. The Clarinet Sonata, Quartet and Quintet were intended for the concert hall, while the other pieces were written for amateurs to be played in more private settings, Hindemith’s mission being to create approachable music for as many people as possible. In all these works Hindemith’s particular style shines through: from the strict neo-classicism, the “Neue Sachlichkeit” to vigorous expressionism, all sharing his joy of invention and creation. Played by Italian master clarinettist Davide Bandieri, who played solo clarinet in the Lucerne Festival Orchestra and Mahler Chamber Orchestra conducted by Claudio Abbado. For this recording he secured the collaboration of such eminent instrumentalists as pianist Matteo Fossi, violinist Duccio Ceccanti and cellist Vittorio Ceccanti. Recorded in Perugia, Italy, in May, June and October 2016. Contains liner notes and biographies of the artists.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image L'estro Armonico
Antonio Vivaldi was one of the most successful composers of the Baroque era, best known for his iconic set concertos for violin, The Four Seasons. LEstro Armonico Op.3 is among the most important printed editions of Vivaldis concertos; the works immediately met with great acclaim after their publication in 1711, giving way to over 30 reprints in the subsequent 32 years.Indeed, this was the first collection of concerti to be published with a title, showing that the composer himself was aware of the nature of this extraordinary event. The work was originally dedicated to Prince Ferdinando de Medici, son and heir of Cosimo III, Grand Duke of Tuscany. This special release is the world premiere recording based on the edition by Michael Talbot, of the Istituto Italiano Antonio Vivaldi, Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Venice and has been produced in collaboration with Ricordi and Universal Music Publishing.LArte dellArco is an internationally renowned ensemble that has achieved great acclaim through performances and recordings. Each member is handpicked from the elite of the Italian classical music scene and has performed with many period orchestras across Europe. The group regularly takes part in early music festivals and has, in recent years, toured extensively outside of Europe in the Far East and South America. Artistic Director and Concert Master Federico Guglielmo has been hailed by the Boston Globe as the new star of the ancient music landscape and was the winner of the Antonio Vivaldi International Recording Prize, also receiving a Diapason dOr for his recording of Vivaldi concertos.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Cantatas
Of Johann Sebastien Bach's many children, three were composers of genius -- C.P.E, J.C and W.F. Wilhelm Friedrich remains the least understood, least known, and was possibly the most gifted of the three. He studied under his father, and it is thought that the Goldberg Variations were composed to show of his eldest son's keyboard virtuosity. W.F was however a restless soul, who eventually abandoned music altogether. In 1750 it was W.F who managed his father estate after his death, and he had to sell off his father's manuscripts to settle debts.

His life was one of disorder, and although he managed to obtain several good positions, he fell into poverty, and ill health followed. It is possible that his last pupil was Sarah Itzig Levy, great aunt of Felix Mendelssohn.

The cantatas on these discs contain some of W.F's most forward looking and vocally demanding music. Firmly based upon the examples of his father's cantatas (which W.F performed regularly) they are a strange and unique mix of the old fashioned and the new 'Sturm und Drang'. In places the sound world of the young Haydn can be heard, in others the voice of J.S Bach sounds clearly. W.F's music is of the highest quality and like his brothers, it spans the transition from the baroque to the galant classical style.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Music for Flute
Sigfried Karg-Elert (1877-1933) is best remembered for his organ works, and more specifically, for the harmonium. His dense, chromatic and complex counterpoint and rich late romantic harmonies put him next to his compatriot Max Reger.This set contains the complete works for flute solo and flute and piano. His 30 Caprices for solo flute are not only interesting for professional flute players, and the works for flute and piano, notably the substantial Flute Sonata, are masterworks in their genre, showing an original mind and a fine ear for the flute's lyrical and seductive qualities.Excellent and compelling performances by two young Italian musicians, liner notes in English and Italian.


kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Music for Violin and Piano
Irish romantic music written by an Italian! Michele Esposito (1855-1929) was born in the poor south of Italy. Bad luck prompted him to go abroad and he finally settled in Ireland, where he spent the last 46 years of his life, founding the Dublin Orchestral Society.He conducted the London Symphony Orchestra, with whom he also performed his own piano concerto conducted by Hamilton Harty.Esposito's works have a particular Irish flavour, freely making use of folk melodies and generally expressing the atmosphere of the Irish landscape and folklore.This release presents his complete output for violin and piano, real discoveries in this genre, works of deep emotional content and a high level of virtuosity.Played by two Italians with the right romantic feel for this music: violinist Carmelo Andriani and young Vincenzo Maltempo (who received great critical acclaim for his stunning recordings of piano music by Alkan and Schumann on Piano Classics).


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Songs

Monica Piccinini (soprano), Roberto Abbondanza (baritone), Alda Caiello (soprano), Elisabetta Pallucchi (mezzo soprano), Filippo Farinelli (piano)


The first Recording of the complete songs by Dallapiccola, one of the most influential composers of 20th century Italy. His political engagement and his experiments with the 12-tone technique established him firmly in the European Avant-Garde.

The main work on this double CD are the transcriptions he made of 17th and 18th century Italian songs, by Monteverdi, Caldara, Carissimi, Caccini, Durante, Stradella, Legrenzi and others. He wrote brilliantly dry and essential, making intelligent use of counterpoint and canon, with exquisite taste for vocal timbres and polyrhythm. In that sense they are far more "20th century" than similar transcriptions by other composers (Respighi, Busoni a.o.) who romanticised the original early works.

Also included are the two original song cycles by Dallapiccola: Rencesvals and Quattro Liriche di Antonio Machado, fascinating testimony of his unique style, both severe and warmly emotional. Beautifully performed by 4 excellent Italian singers who already recorded successfully the songs by Jolivet (BC9220) and Ravel (BC94743).


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Die Auferstehung und Himmelfahrt Jesu
In the second half of the 18th century the German oratorio was marked by two characteristics: the tendency toward a highly individualistic depiction of emotions, and the avoidance of dramatic, operatic plots. The lyrical depiction of the sufferings and death of Jesus Christ, rather than Old Testament stories, thus became the preferred subject matter for authors who wished to create morally uplifting texts. Wholly conforming to this new aesthetic, as promulgated by the Swiss professor Johann Georg Sulzer, is C.P.E. Bach's grandiose Die Auferstehung und Himmelfahrt Jesu, written during the composer's sojourn in Hamburg and which earned high recognition beyond this city during his lifetime.

Also included on the set is Gott hat den Herrn auferwecket, a charming cantata written for the 1756 Easter services in Berlin and which was probably commissioned by an outside party - given that the composer's duties at this time were centered around the court of Frederick the Great as a harpsichordist. Performed by an all-German cast that includes the renowned Rheinische Kantorei, this release is a welcome addition to Brilliant Classics' every-growing discography of C.P.E. Bach repertoire - one that will hopefully go some way towards increasing awareness of one of music history's most significant composers.



kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Madrigali Libri I & II
Le Nuove Musiche, led by acclaimed director Krijn Koetsveld, continue with their exceptional series of Claudio Monteverdi’s complete madrigals. Here, they look back to the very beginning of Monteverdi's works, when the young composer was still under the influence of his teacher Marc'Antonio Ingegneri. At this time, the madrigal was already a popular art form, one that Monteverdi was beginning to add his name to, before – as we know – he would go on to radically extend it with the introduction of the seconda prattica. These two books show that Monteverdi was an assured and dexterous composer in the established genre. He could follow the conventions of madrigal-writing – concentrating on the recitation of the text, adding in affects by altering the melody, rhythm and harmony – with skill and originality. Although he had to compete with other books already on the market, he was confident and ambitious – he dedicated his books to prominent patrons, and finally gained a royal appointment in Mantua shortly after the second book of madrigals was published. Le Nuove Musiche’s approach to Monteverdi is an innovative one: to bring the past into the present, keeping alive the questions of the Renaissance that still permeate our musical landscape today, while seeking to maintain the highest standards of performance authenticity. Their release of Books V & VI garnered excellent reviews, including five stars in the French magazine Diapason. The first two books of Madrigals by Monteverdi date from the period in which he lived and worked in his native town Cremona. They are sublime examples of the Prima Prattica, in which Recitation of the text came first, and affects were made audible by melody, rhythm, and by playing with repetitions, strengths and harmony. In the Second Book we encounter lovely word painting and evocation of images and moods. This is the third instalment of the complete recording of Monteverdi’s Madrigals by Le Nuove Musiche. This vocal ensemble consists of the elite of Dutch Early Music vocalists, led by eminent conductor and scholar Krijn Koetsveld. Their previous Monteverdi recordings received excellent reviews in the international press, among which a “5 star” in the French Diapason and a “10/10” in Dutch classical magazine Luister. The booklet contains liner notes written by the conductor and the complete vocal texts and their English translation.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Frescobaldi Edition, Vol. 10
Girolamo Frescobaldi was the most significant figure in Italian keyboard music before Scarlatti. He worked in the city of Ferrara in northern Italy, a hotbed of progressive influences, particularly in the fields of singing, instrumental performance and musical rhetoric. Frescobaldi was, therefore, ideally placed to absorb the influences of Flanders, Rome, Naples and nearby Venice and, influenced by advances in keyboard technology and performance techniques, developed his mastery of both organ and harpsichord.

Volume 10 in the Brilliant Classics Frescobaldi Edition is focused particularly on the 1608 Il Primo libro delle Fantasie a Quattro, composed when Frescobaldi was organist at St Peter's Basilica in Rome. It is dedicated to Francesco Borghese, brother of Pope Paul V, a shrewd move by the composer, and was his first keyboard work to be published. Strongly contrapuntal in nature, these fantasias are musically complex, constructed using several melodic themes and contrasting sections. The fantasies on this recording are interspersed with seven canzonas. The remaining canzonas can be heard on CD2 among the Canzoni alla Francese.

On this recording, Roberto Loreggian improvises briefly at the beginning of each canzona, following the custom of the time, using Frescobaldi's own toccatas as models. The canzonas date from 1615--45, and demonstrate the composer's style developing and maturing over this 30-year span, creating music of extraordinary imagination and technical inventiveness.

Other information:
- Recording made in 2010

- Excellent linernotes, written by a Frescobaldi scholar

- Other volumes in the Brilliant Classics Frescobaldi edition include Fiori Musicali - 3 Organ Masses (93781), Il primo Libro di Capricci (94020) and Il Primo Libro di Recercari (94049), also performed by Roberto Loreggian


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image 24 Minimal Preludes
Jeroen van Veen, piano

In these 24 preludes, spread over two books of equal length, Jeroen van Veen has been inspired by the key-order of Chopin, the piano-techniques of Franz Liszt and Sergei Rachmaninoff, the polyrhythmic textural layering of Philip Glass, the sound of Simeon ten Holt and the rhythms of Steve Reich, all governed by the guiding principle of less is more. The preludes are highly representative examples of van Veen’s ‘Lego-brick’ aesthetic. The idea behind this is to create variation. Lego refers to the Danish phrase ‘leg godt’, which means ‘to play well’. Complexity is lent to such simple materials by the layering of irregular and compound time-signatures such as 5/8, 7/8, 11/8 and 13/8. Many motives reappear in various works, like Lego bricks in Lego structures do. Some Preludes such as No.18 are just a few ‘Lego bricks’ that can be repeated or even constructed in any order. Since they were written in 2003-4, these simple preludes have inspired film-makers and artists in their own works; they have also provided the score to a ballet. After the success of Jeroen van Veen’s many recordings of minimal piano music for Brilliant Classics, this new release is sure to receive attention in the press. Most recently he recorded the complete piano works of Erik Satie in time for the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth. His previous recording of the Preludes was well-received by the American Record Guide: ‘Veen’s own Minimal Piano Preludes, which take up two discs of the collection, are a must-have… his performances are more technically polished and conventionally musical: the music breathes.’

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Music for Lute
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Shakespeare Sonnets Op.125 & Duets Op.97
No modern record company has done more than Brilliant Classics to revive the music and reputation of the Italian-American composer Mario Castelvuovo-Tedesco. Not only in the field of guitar music for which he is most famous, but in piano music (94811) and most recently an extensive and powerful song-cycle for soprano and guitar, The Divan of Moses Ibn Ebra (95282). Here’s another new album of the composer’s vocal music, of still greater importance: the first complete recording of his cycle of Shakespeare Sonnets, coupled with the world premiere recording of the three Shakespeare Duets. Castelnuovo-Tedesco set texts by many great poets, among them Dante, Heine and Lorca. It was for Shakespeare, however, that he nurtured his foremost passion. Having composed settings of all the standalone songs in the plays while still resident in Italy, he then turned to the sonnets while ‘isolated and proud’ in the bitter-sweet exile of Beverly Hills where he made his home for the last 30 years of his life. They were set down with astonishing fluency, more than half within less than two months in the autumn of 1945. Ultimately he put music to 32 of Shakespeare’s 154 sonnets, all in the original English, including three settings for vocal ensemble. All of them are now gathered together for the first time, together with the three Duets from 1937. For Castelnuovo-Tedesco as for many of his colleagues past and present, Shakespeare’s language is ‘perfectly musical: it unites the spiritual subtlety of English with the sonorous splendour of Italian.’ In particular, ‘the Sonnets are one of the most miraculous products of the poetry of all times! Shakespeare acts like a mirror of humanity, expressing sentiments that are both his and universal: they are absolute and eternal, expressed by means of an extraordinary, perfect wealth of images.’ Thus these settings reflect the beauty and complexity which Castelnuovo-Tedesco ‘heard’ in the poetry. There is no repetition of words or phrases; the only recurring element is a coda in the piano that seems to act like the unconditional resolutions that conclude each poem. Musical convention is rare, and when it does surface is handled with irony. The prevailing style is bold and free, within the sphere of the Italian vocal tradition, yet not afraid to absorb elements from European music of the early 1900s or echoes of the lighter, popular music that was evolving in the US.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Missa Dei Patris
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Easy Studies For Guitar Vol. 1
The growing library of guitar music on Brilliant Classics already encompasses several albums of etudes and miniatures written for students and amateur players. From rare to well-known, there are the studies of Gangi (BC95204), Tansman (BC95221), Castelnuovo-Tedesco (BC95219) and Gilardino (BC9285), among many others.

The Gilardino album features the artistry of guitarist and composer Cristiano Porqueddu, who has made several other well-received albums for Brilliant Classics, including collections of rarely encountered composers in ‘Novecento Guitar Preludes’ (BC9292) and ‘Novecento Guitar Sonatas’ (BC9455), both of which include many first recordings. Reviewing the set of Preludes, MusicWeb International praised the ‘coruscating variety, fine recorded sound and lovingly shaped playing… Porqueddu’s playing is miraculously clean and there’s very little fret noise.’

Porqueddu’s appetite for the unusual and sense of adventure is further confirmed by a new set of ‘Easy Studies for Guitar’, containing music that is as satisfying to listen to as it is relatively unchallenging to master for the intermediate-to-advanced student guitarist. Only Tansman has a currency outside guitarists, but the other three, more contemporary figures speak with powerfully individual voices.

The Russian composer-guitarist Nikita Koshkin may be a particularly welcome discovery for non-initiates: born in 1956, he counts the music of Shostakovich and Prokofiev as important early influences, but his own music lies within the Spanish guitar tradition, while employing more modern harmonies and building to climaxes of unexpected tension and drama. Born in Granada in 1975, Eduardo Garrido now teaches and composes in Mexico, and in his studies can also be heard a non-native wildness and urgency, for all that they are sympathetically composed with intermediate students in mind.

Master guitarist Cristiano Porqueddu embarks on a praiseworthy and ambitious recording project: Easy Studies for Guitar, works written by famous or less well known composers with the special aim to educate, challenge, develop and entertain the aspiring guitar student. The works focus on certain technical issues disguised as it were in the musical content and its emotions.

The first CD contains works by Eduardo Garrido, Nikita Koshkin, Alexandre Tansman and Reginald Smith-Brindle.

Cristiano Porqueddu, who already recorded more than 40 CD’s, all of them to great critical acclaim, takes his task seriously, always finding the right atmosphere and character of these delightful musical gems, aided by his immaculate technique.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Cantatas
Harmonices Mundi / Claudio Astronio

Nicolaus Bruhns (1665-1697) was born in Denmark, where he caught the attention of Buxtehude, becoming his most talented and favourite pupil. He became composer at the Danish Royal Court when his untimely death at age 31 ended a splendid career. Many works by Bruhns have been lost. The young Johann Sebastian Bach has a great admiration for the vocal works by Bruhns, and their influence may be clearly seen in Bach’s early works.

This new recording presents the complete Cantatas by Bruhns, written in the “Stylus Phantasticus” displaying a notable freedom of form and expression of feeling.

Performed by 4 excellent vocal soloists and the Harmonices Mundi, conducted by Claudio Astronio, who already recorded successfully for Brilliant Classics works by Handel, Cabezon (complete works) Wilhelm Friedemann Bach and Stradella.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Vespro della beata Vergine
Ensemble San Felice, La Pifaresca / Federico Bardazzi

An enduring masterpiece of early Baroque sacred music, Monteverdi’s Vespro della Beata Vergine (known in English as ‘Vespers’) was the most ambitious religious or vocal work to be written before the time of J.S. Bach, calling for a large chorus, soloists and orchestra and employing an innovative array of musical forms. Contrasting the contemplative cantus firmus underpinning the entire work (Dixit Dominus, Laetatus Sum) with moments of dazzling theatricality (Nisi Dominus, Deus in Adiutorium), Monteverdi looks to the future of dramatic music whilst staying true to the work’s Gregorian bloodline.

Under the guidance of director Federico Bardazzi, Ensemble Felice bring their scrupulous scholarship to the many interpretative decisions to be made, as the order of movements and much of the orchestration is left to the performers’ discretion. Grounded in research into the

historical context and practices surrounding the work, Bardazzi has chosen to structure it by placing motets between the prescribed sequence of psalms. The quietude of the motets provides a wonderful contrast to these often grandiose choral movements, and the placing of the Sicut erat towards the end makes a fitting climax to the entire work. Ensemble Felice also come with a full compliment of Monteverdi’s intended orchestral forces including a 30-strong choir, full orchestra and specially invited brass ensemble La Pifarescha. Working closely with the non-metric Latin text, the ensemble use changes of character, rhythm and metre to maximise its expressive potential. With performances on period instruments, authentic renditions of Gregorian chants and an attention to detail that even retunes concert pitch to its more historically accurate version, this is a faithful recording of a supreme work.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Sonatas for Four Hands
Here’s a release of rare repertoire sure to intrigue and delight anyone with more than a passing interest in 18th-century musical culture. The English scholar, musician and inveterate traveller, observer and collector Charles Burney is known for many things – fine taste, a ready wit and a capacious address book principal among them – but his own compositions have so far received almost no attention. Burney’s diaries make for immensely entertaining reading. In them may be relished vivid accounts of musical circles and activities in Italian, German, Dutch, French and English cities, and mention is made of Handel, Metastasio, Sammartini, Mozart, C.P.E. Bach and many others. However, Burney’s musical personality was deeper and more complex than reading his diaries might lead one to believe. For the fact is that he was not only a ‘musicologist’, but also a practising musician active as a composer, a professional organist, harpsichordist and violinist. Burney’s encyclopedic knowledge and breadth of sympathy are evident in the two volumes of the Four Sonatas or Duets for two performers on one Pianoforte or Harpsichord, which he published at his own expense in London in 1777. In fact the novelty of the sonatas was a commercially astute decision, for although they are in essence conceived for solo piano, there was at the time no other published music for the increasingly popular form of duet music at a single keyboard. Each sonata has two movements: a slow and expressive introduction leads to a lively Allegro, though the second sonata of the second volume reverses this order, and the final sonata begins with an elaborate Andantino which overshadows the concluding Rondo. Burney also took care to exploit the dynamic possibilities of the hammer-action instruments which were gradually displacing the harpsichord; Anna Clemente & Susanna Piolanti perform the sonatas on a square, English model fortepiano dating from 1800: the booklet includes both photographs of the instrument and an invaluable introduction to Burney the composer. The historical significance of Charles Burney (1726-1814) as an author lies in his “General history of Music” and his numerous diaries, in which he describes the musical life of the countries he visits and the famous musicians and composers he meets there, all written with an deep insight grounded in profound musical knowledge. As a musician he was active as organist, harpsichordist and violinist. His sonatas for keyboard 4 hands (“for the pianoforte or harpsichord”) were published for domestic use by a growing middleclass, eager to consume not too challenging keyboard works. They are delightful sonatas in the style of Clementi and Johann Christian Bach (the “London Bach”), fully exploring the possibilities of the new keyboards quickly gaining popularity. Played by Anna Clementi and Susanna Piolanti on a historic square English piano built in 1800 by Josephus Kirckman.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Organ Music
Marco Ruggeri, organ

First and foremost this set should offer a great deal of fun to organists and connoisseurs of organ music who are familiar with the rousing sorties of other 19th-century composers such as Lemare and Lefébure-Wély, but who are curious about a lesser-known name. Over two discs, Marco Ruggeri presents an array of music for mostly liturgical purposes by Giovanni Morandi (1777-1856). There are various voluntaries to be played at the Offertory, the Elevation and after Communion, and these are meditative in mood, written in the style of a plausibly Italian admirer of César Franck. Interspersed with them are the much more boisterous Allegro marziale, several sinfonias, a variation set, a Rondo with bell imitations and the splendidly titled ‘Good save the Queen – Inno Inglese dell’immortale Heudel in F’ – this is exactly how the work appeared in an Italian music catalogue of the time. Whether the spelling mistakes originated with Morandi or his publisher is now lost in the mists of time, but the work itself should raise smiles no less than the title. His wife was an opera-singer, and he often accompanied her on her tours; he wrote a vast amount of music, much of it influenced by the operatic culture in which he was immersed. The organs used on this recording are an instrument made by the Venetian builder Gaetano Callido for the Parish church of SS Simon and Thaddeus in Borca di Cadore in the province of Belluno (CD1); and on CD2, an 1830 instrument built by Antonio and Angelo Amati for the Parish church of SS Peter and Paul in Provaglio d’Iseo, Brescia. Full organ specifications are listed in the booklet, which also contains colour photographs of the organs and a brief introduction to the historical context of Morandi’s music.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Leipziger Choräle
Manuel Tomadin organ

The C minor Passacaglia and Fugue is one of the great masterpieces for the instrument and one which inspired countless responses from composers great and lesser. So it's all the more astonishing to think that Bach wrote it while still a twenty-something hireling in Weimar, where his Kapellmeistership to the Duke ended badly with the composer being clapped in irons for touting his availability for other jobs, frustrated as his ambition was by the restrictions of the position. He had, however, managed to overhaul the organ of the court chapel in 1712-13, by collaborating with an organ-builder friend by the name of Trebs; both men had had plenty of experience upgrading instruments elsewhere, and it showed both in the colourful specification of the new instrument and the music that Bach was thereby able to write for it - none more spectacular than the spectrum of registers which the successive variations of the Passacaglia seem to cry out for. Bach also wrote plenty of 'bread and butter' chorales while in Weimar, of course, and later elaborated them, as was his wont, in Leipzig; here's a rare chance to hear the original versions.

Manuel Tomadin is Young ECHO Organist of the Year 2012, having won the ninth Internationaal Schnitger Orgelconcours during the Orgelfestival Holland in June 2011 in Alkmaar. He was born in 1977 but has already made recordings on various instruments of historical importance; he enjoys a high reputation among the organ fraternity.


kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Capriccii for solo violin
Igor Ruhadze, violin solo

For the first time on CD: the complete 24 Capricci for violin solo by Locatelli!

his issue might be considered as an "afterbirth" of the complete Locatelli Edition on Brilliant Classics. The Capricci are written down cadenzas as featured in the violin concertos Op. 3 (L'Arte del Violino). They are highly virtuosic, demanding the greatest technical skills from the performer (not for nothing Locatelli was called a "devil" performing these works!). The Capricci are so substantial that they can stand on their own. Eighty years later that other "violin devil", Nicolo Paganini would write Capricci as well, thus establishing a new musical form.

Russian violinist Igor Ruhadze received a solid training in Moscow, before specialising in Historically Informed Performance Practice, and is fully equipped to tackle these dazzling works, "breathtakingly performed" as the Gramophone writes.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Toccata & Fugue - Famous Organ Music
Stefano Molardi, organ

This 2CD set presents a selection of the most famous, best-loved organ works by Johann Sebastian Bach, ranging from intimate Choralvorspiele, ingenious fugues, a sparkling Concerto transcription to the monumental Toccata & Fugue in D minor and the towering Passacaglia in C minor.

Award-winning organist, harpsichordist, conductor and scholar Stefano Molardi is a peerless interpreter, having complete the recording of Bach's Organ Music for Brilliant Classics (BC 95105). The instruments heard on this album date from Bach's time (Silbermann, Trost, Thielemann, ildebrandt) therefore bringing us as close as possible to the sound world of the great Leipzig Cantor and allowing us to hear them as he might have done himself.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image 12 Sonatas for Flute and B.C.
Jed Wentz transverse flute
Musica ad Rhenum

Johan Helmich Roman (1694-1758) is called the "Father of Swedish music" and also the "Swedish Handel". And with good reason, as his instrumental works match Handel's chamber music in charm, virtuosity formal structure and tunefulness. In fact Roman met Handel during his stay in England, and Roman's admiration for the master is evident.

No better advocate for these somewhat neglected works than Jed Wentz and his musical companions of Musica ad Rhenum. Not only are they thoroughly aware of the stylistic details of the music and its performance, but they also hugely enjoy themselves playing these flute sonatas, written "for the advanced dilettante, well versed in style and technique" (as Roman himself describes it).

Excellent liner notes by Jed Wentz (a fine player as well as an eminent scholar).


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Angelus – Sacred Piano Music
Irene Russo, piano

A beautiful concept: the “Religious Liszt”, or piano music with a sacred inspiration.

Franz Liszt, one of the most famous artists of the 19th century, with the status of a modern pop star, was a deeply religious man, in his later years he was even ordained as a priest (the lower orders). Apart from his extravert, sometimes even a bit showy, virtuoso works (the studies, opera transcriptions and paraphrases, Hungarian rhapsodies etc) he wrote a substantial amount of “religious” piano music: Ave Maria, Angelus, Miserere, Légendes, Benediction de Dieu dans la solitude and many others, music of an often serene and contemplative character, smelling of incense. But also the dark side is presented: in the Totentanz we hear an infernal dance of the dead, on the melody of the Dies Irae.

Played with a natural feeling for the Lisztian rhetoric, a fine sense of drama and a beautiful tone by Italian pianist Irene Russo, who makes her Brilliant Classics debut with this wonderful 2CD set.

Contains extensive liner notes and biography of the artist in English.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image La Cetra: 12 Violin Concertos, Op. 9
Federico Guglielmo, violin and concert master
L'Arte dell'Arco

A new instalment of Guglielmo’s recording cycle of the complete Opus number 1-12 by Vivaldi: the 12 violin concertos Op. 9, known as “La Cetra”, dedicated to Charles VI, the holy Roman Emperor of the Hapsburg empire.

As in the other concerto cycles “L’Estro Armonico”, “La Stravaganza” and the 4 Seasons, these concertos abound in virtuoso writing for the soloist and brilliant melodic invention, in vocal italianate style, foreboding the classical style of the first Viennese School.

The Vivaldi cycle by L’Arte dell’Arco and violinist/conductor Federico Guglielmo is considered one of the most exciting since years: “Infectious joy, improvisatory flair and an instinct for Vivaldi’s language” (BBC 3), “technically impressive and musically engaging” (Musicweb), “Begeisterend..Elan und schäumende Spielfreude” (Klassik.com).

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Alternatim Masses
Federico del Sordo, organ
Nova Schola Gregoriana; In Dulci Jubilo / Alberto Turco

Claudio Merulo (1533-1604) was an important composer, organist and publisher in Late-Renaissance Italy. He obtained the prestigious post of organist of the famous San Marco in Venice. His keyboard style is highly innovative, and was the basis of further development by composers like Frescobaldi and Sweelinck.

In his Masses Merulo alternates the choir and the organ in the different mass sections. The organ part starts out as a transcription of vocal polyphony but develops into ornamented fantasies of advanced virtuosity.

Beautifully sung by the famous Schola gregoriana "In Dulci Jubilo", conducted by specialist Alberto Turco, recorded in the great acoustic of the Verona Cathedral. The historical organ played by Federico Del Sordo, is built by Costanzo Antegnati (1565-1606).


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Keyboard Sonatas
David Boldrini, fortepiano

The 88 sonatas of Domenico Cimarosa (1749-1801) have been recorded complete before but never on a fortepiano which reveals their true Italianate colour as well as their unfailing charm. The Bachian figurations of the quick movements trip so much more easily from the lighter touch of the fortepiano than its heavier descendant, and a fine pianist can make much more from the Scarlattian contrasts of breathless toccata and lyric style which are Cimarosa's principal modes of expression here.

As with Scarlatti's individual sonatas, these short character pieces gather naturally by key, tempo and affekt into groups; not Scarlattian pairs but trios, thus forming mini sonatas in the Classical form if not style. About 30 of them have strong late Baroque inspiration, full of rhythmic and harmonic inventiveness, but the biggest group is formed by at least 40 sonatas that call to mind an opera sinfonia in a typical Italian theatre, with melodramatic moments, cavatinas and cabalettas, love duets alongside comic scenes, all deriving from the effervescent Neapolitan tradition. There are also homages from within the sacred music of that tradition with elaborate counterpoint and formal fantasy, and still other sonatas that proceed in a more reflective, late Classical style, conceived in a tripartite A-B-A form.

David Boldrini has recorded the sonatas on two instruments: a copy of an Anton Walter model, and an original Schantz fortepiano, both carefully maintained at the Accademia Bartolomeo Cristofori in Florence, which collects and curates fortepianos and the music written for them. Boldrini himself studied in Florence and now works there as a pianist, conductor and repetiteur.

Domenico Cimarosa (1749-1801) was one of the best known composers of the Neapolitan School. He held several important musical posts throughout Europe (St. Petersburg, the Emperor Leopold in Vienna) as a highly successful composer of operas. His best known work is the opera Il Matrimonio Segreto, which brought him universal fame.

Cimarosa's output for the keyboard consists if a great number of sonatas, short, one movement works, charmingly melodious, witty and entertaining.

Pianist David Boldrini plays an early fortepiano, achieving a wide range of expression, from sweet murmuring to fierce brilliance.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Complete Music for Solo Guitar
Cristiano Poli Cappelli, guitar

The music of Alexandre Tansman (1897-1986) is getting more and more attention lately, and rightly so, because here is a highly original yet accessible voice from 20-th century Poland, a highly prolific composer for both the student and the professional.

Tansman's style is influenced by Ravel (the colouristic effects), Scriabin (the extended harmonic language) and his deep love for Polish music and folklore.

This set contains his complete output for guitar solo, suites of Dance forms (often Polish), an Homage a Chopin, Inventions (an homage a Bach), Homage a Lech Walesa and many other exquisite miniatures full of melodic invention, surprising harmonies and a sincere expression of feeling.

Beautifully played by Italian guitarist Cristiano Poli Cappelli, who wrote the liner notes in English and Italian.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image 12 Sinfonie di Concerto Grosso
After being kept in relative obscurity the music of Alessandro Scarlatti is making a glorious come back, and is recognised as at least as innovative, brilliant and profound as the music of his son, the famous Domenico Scarlatti.These "12 sinfonie di concerto grosso" are concertante works, either for a variety of solo instruments (concerto grosso) or for solo recorder and strings. These are delightful baroque concertos, brimming with energy, Italian charm and gusto.Played by Early Music group Capella Tiberina on historical instruments, Corina Marti is the recorder soloist, who already excelled in her recording of the Mancini recorder concertos on Brilliant Classics (BC 94324).


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Clavier Übung III
Shortly after its release, Matteo Messori was awarded a Diaposon d'or for this recording!

'Third part of the Clavierubung consisting of various preludes on the catechism and other hymns for organ: For lovers and especially for connoisseurs of suchlike works, to refresh their spirits, provided by Johann Sebastian Bach, Royal Polish Court Composer and to the Elector of Saxony, and to the Director Chori Musici in Leipzig. Published by the author'

The 3rd book of the Clavierubung was the first collection of organ music published by Bach, and is his largest collection of works for the organ. The 1st part of the Clavierubung appeared in 1731 and consisted of the Partitas BWV 825-830 (published as his Opus1), and was followed by t6he 2nd part in 1735 which included such well know works as the Concerto in the Italian Style and the French Overtures BWV 831 and 971. Parts 1&2 are for harpsichord, the latter for an instrument with 2 keyboards. The 3rd part calls for an instrument with 3 keyboards (i.e the organ pedals), and requires an organist of considerable ability to perform its works. It is interesting that the inscription refers specifically to connoisseurs, a reference to the greater ability required from the performer.

The work has been likened to a German Organ Mass, and although it does contain a Kyrie and Gloria, but there is no Agnus Dei. There is a lot more music than would be required for an organ mass. In fact the collection can be divided in to 3 parts -- a Missa brevis (Kyrie and German Gloria) which form a Lutheran Mass -- there are 9 arrangements of these settings. Second there is a group of 12 arrangements of Catechism songs. The 3rd section moves away from the church and into more domestic music. The Four Duets can be played on either the harpsichord or organ, and this suggests their suitability for domestic music making.

This is Bach's magnum opus for organ.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Compete Piano Music
Francesco Cilea may now be best remembered as a composer of durable, blood-and-thunder staples of the verismo operatic school such as Adriana Lecouvreur and L’Arlesiana, but he addressed himself to chamber and instrumental music at both the beginning and end of his long career. Conservative and unfailingly melodic as his chosen idiom was, it nonetheless evolved in the 66 years between student salon pieces such as the Tre piccoli pezzi of 1888 and the album-leaf of 1944.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Six Recercatas, Fugas and Sonatas
Alejandro Casal, harpsichord

Sebastian de Albero (1722-1756) was a highly talented Spanish composer, who eventually attained a prestigious position at the Royal Court of Ferdinand VI in Madrid, alongside with Domenico Scarlatti and Carlos Seixas. With his early death at age 34 a brilliant career came to a sudden end.

Albero left only two manuscripts, one of which is completely recorded here: the 6 Recercatas, Fugues and Sonatas. This rather unusual set of musical forms which each belong to a different era Albero showed his complete mastery in all existing styles. The Recercatas are free, improvisatory preludes without barlines, in which the imagination of the performer / composer is given free reign. The Fugue is the Baroque form par excellence, and Albero wrote them in grand style of substantial proportions. The Sonatas are single movement pieces in binary form, much like Scarlatti's Sonatas, revelling in brilliant keyboard virtuosity.

Alejandro Casal, one of the finest Spanish cembalists of today, plays a magnificent instrument, built by Ugo Casiglia, after Antunes, measuring 2,5 meters long.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Music for Cello
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Sonates Et Suites Pour Le Clavecin
The output of Jean Barrière (1707-1747) largely focuses around his own instrument, the cello, for which he wrote several books of suites and sonatas that have received sporadic attention on record. His work for harpsichord alone is much less well-known, though hardly less stylish. Like his contemporaries Jacques Duphly and Jean-Phillippe Rameau, Barrière entitled one of his pieces La Boucon for Anne-Jeanne Boucon, who later married Jean-Joseph de Mondonville: she must have been a woman of enviable poise and dignified beauty to judge from the music written in her honour. The first five of his six sonatas on this album are not French dance suites but transcriptions of Italian-inspired sonatas which he had originally composed for the smallest and highest instrument of the old family of viols, the pardessus de viole. The Italian influence can be traced in the bold and often unprepared dissonances which lend the sonatas both charm and unpredictable drama; the elaborate ornamentation, too, derives at least as much from the florid violin writing of Corelli and Geminiani as from the French harpsichord tradition. Bernard de Bury is a figure whose music was lost to history until very recently, when in 2009 the scholar-musician Ruta Bloomfield transcribed these pieces from obscure manuscripts and gave them their first performances in modern times. De Bury (1720-1785) was born into a musical family in Versailles, and there he stayed to serve the court. There are four suites, which in the style of Rameau and Couperin describe with wit and tender affection characters from ancient mythology and the composer’s own time, with melodies almost buried beneath cascades of exquisite decoration. In his dedication, de Bury states that he was fifteen years old when he wrote the suites, though such precocious youth could not be guessed from the music itself, which is far from immature. This coupling is unique on record; only one previous recording of de Bury’s work is presently available. This 2CD set present two French masters of the keyboard, sons of the French Enlightenment: Jean-Baptist Barrière (1707-1747) and Bernard de Bury (1720-1785). Both composers lived through an age in which the French culture absorbed many “foreign” elements, notably the Italian style of the Concerto-style (solo versus tutti), vocal Cantabile and instrumental brilliance. Luca Quintavalle played with many leading Early Music ensembles such as Concerto Köln and Les Talents Lyriques. He recorded for Sony, DGG, Hyperion and DHM. Scholarly written liner notes by the artist are included in the booklet.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Hunyadi László
The first issue in a series of new recordings for Brilliant Classics from the world famous Budapest National Opera, Hungarian operas in Hungarian.

Ferenc Erkel was one of the foremost romantic composers of Hungary, one might be tempted to call him the Hungarian Verdi. His operas were based on the rich, long and troublesome history of his home country, and are the first to be written in Hungarian. The plot centres around the hero Hunyadi László in his fight against to ruling Ottomans in the 13th century.

Excellent performances by Hungarian forces, the crème of the Budapest National Opera, with its long and famous tradition, in which also Gustav Mahler played his role (he was director of the Budapest Opera for several years).

Booklet contains detailed notes on the music and plot synopsis, libretto in original language downloadable from the Brilliant Classics website.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Il dolore di Maria Vergine
A Lenten oratorio in the Italian tradition of sacred opera, Il Dolore di Maria Vergine is widely held to be the outstanding masterpiece in the genre by Alessandro Scarlatti. Structured in two extended parts, it assigns roles to the Virgin Mary, St John, Nicodemus and to a High Priest named Onìa. The challenge taken on by the composer and his anonymous librettist early in 1717 was to make a mere four characters effective as vehicles for conveying the drama of the Passion, moving as Bach does from the capture of Jesus in Gethsemane, to his interrogation by Pilate, his scourging and crowning with thorns, his journey to Calvary and his crucifixion and death. As one of the foremost scholars of Scarlatti’s music, Estévan Velardi believes this work even to stand alongside the Passions of Bach, for its grave intensity, nobly sustained form and generous variety of expression. Velardi produced the authoritative critical edition of the score; with the Alessandro Stradella Consort, he has ‘notched up an impressively broad discography of unjustly neglected Italian Baroque masters,’ as Gramophone remarked in 2010 when reviewing a later Brilliant Classics album of Scarlatti’s San Filippo Neri (BC94037). Recorded in 2001 and first released by Bongiovanni, this recording of Il dolore di Maria Vergine was welcomed by the Italian Musica magazine with a ringing endorsement of its virtues: ‘The orchestra is precise, and in full sympathy with the Scarlatti idiom; outstanding among the instrumental soloists are the trumpet player Gabriele Cassone, the violinist Fabrizio Cipriani and the members of the notably rich continuo section. All the vocal soloists give fine accounts of themselves: Rosita Frisani’s Maria is always focused and involved in the drama; as Nicodemus, Gianluca Belfiori Doro sings with an unaffected countertenor voice, rich in nuance; Anna Chierichetti combines secure technique with heartfelt expression, as does Mario Checchetti, who captures the many facets of the complex role of Onìa.’

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Chamber Music for Violin, Cello and Piano
Who was Mario Pilati? A significant if shortlived (1903-38) figure in Italian instrumental music during the 1920s and 1930s: a gifted conductor, fluent pianist, practical teacher, essayist and perspicacious observer of the musical life of his times.

His own music is celebrated here, and anyone who takes pleasure in Romantic chamber music, the neoclassical idiom of Stravinsky, or the vigorous yet always lyric idiom of Respighi and Casella, will find much to enjoy here. In fact Pilati’s music for piano and for orchestra has received some attention on record; much less so his chamber works, making this new 2CD set an important addition to Brilliant Classics’ unrivalled catalogue of Italian music from 1850-1950.

The troubled expression of the three- movement, half-hour sonatas for violin and cello (1928) reflects the temper of their times, whereas the Preludio, Aria & Tarantella on Old Neapolitan Folk Tunes for violin and piano apparently turn away from intense battles between tension and reconciliation with the kind of light touch and folk-inspired humour that may be found in the best early works by Casella.

There are several miniatures from the 1920s which attest to Pilati’s elegance and sophistication early in his career, as well as to the excellence of his training in his native Naples (though he moved to Milan at 22 and made his career there). Despite its name, Inquiétude is a flowing study for piano, reminiscent of Debussy. The set is completed by his two volumes of Bagatelles for solo piano, which frequently draw on Neapolitan themes: 11 relaxed and convivial pieces in all, of an easy charm that would not disgrace Pilati’s friend Nino Rota, and written in an accessible style which may reflect their dedication to the composer’s three daughters.

The album is comprehensively documented with valuable notes on both the composer and his work by the pianist Dario Candela: a student of Aldo Ciccolini, who described his pupil as ‘an excellent pianist of great class’. He is joined here by Francesco Manara – a former leader of the orchestra at La Scala, Milan – and the cellist Luca Signorini who, like Pilati, pursues a diverse career as a performing musician, conductor and writer.

Mario Pilati (1903-1938) was an important figure in Italian musical life in the 20-ties and 30-ties of the 20-th century. After winning the prestigious Coolidge Prize his works were also performed in the USA, a.o. by the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Koussevitsky.
Pilati’s style has its roots in the Late-Romantic language of Mahler and Richard Strauss. His compatriot Respighi’s influence is shown in his fondness for modal writing, whereas also neo-classical inspirations can be traced.
This 2CD set contains Pilati’s complete output for violin and piano and cello and piano. Prominent is the substantial and brooding Violin Sonata in F minor, the Cello Sonata in A minor and lighter fare such as the Bagatelles for piano.
Played with dedication and obvious love for the music by 3 italian musicians: Francesco Manara (violin), Luca Signorini (cello) and pianist Dario Candela.
The booklet contains an extensive composer portrait as well as commentary on the works written by Laura Esposito Pilati.

kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Piano Music
Works: Ancora. Berlin song. Brothers. Bye bye mon amour. Canzone popolare. Corale. Corale Solo. Discovery at night. Giorni Dispari. I giorni. Indaco. L'origine nascosta. L'Ultima Volta. Le onde. Luce. Nefeli. Nightbook. Nuvole bianche. Oltremare. Primavera. Questa notte. Reverie. Sarabande. Two trees. Una mattina. Walk. Waterways.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Trio Sonatas, Op. 1
Federico Guglielmo, violin and concert master
L'Arte dell'Arco

Tomaso Albinoni (1671-1751) spent most of his life in his native Venice, he was a famous opera composer, and was one of the few composers who were of independent means, not in the service of Court or Church. Nowadays Albinoni is foremost known for his instrumental works, trio sonatas and concertos, showing his great melodic gift, his inventiveness and high spirits.

These Trio Sonatas Op. 1 are played by the Italian elite group L'Arte dell'Arco, led by violinist Federico Guglielmo, with an established reputation in this repertoire, having won several international prizes and rave reviews for their numerous CD's, notably their Vivaldi cycle for Brilliant Classics.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Les Nations
Jed Wentz, conductor
Musica ad Rhenum

Couperin may have been a contemporary of J.S. Bach, but his life stands in marked contrast to that of the great German. A court composer who worked at the fashion capital of the 18th century, Versailles, he was known as a trendsetter -- the author of a stylish and refined style where virtuosity and good taste worked in happy coexistence.

This is nowhere better exemplified than in his Les Nations, four trio pieces consisting of a sonata followed by a suite. While three of the Italianate sonatas were composed long before their publication date (1726), Couperin rejects his cultivation of Les Goûts-réünis -- a fusion of the two most important styles of that period, French and Italian -- for the dances. Here, instead, he opts for an overtly French idiom, one where expression and form are one and the same.

Performing Les Nations are the acclaimed early music group Musica ad Rhenum, an ensemble which aims to move, amuse and delight audiences through blending an informed historical perspective with a lively artistic spirit. Using contemporary instrumentation as well as metronome indications and marked freedom of tempo -- typical traits of the French style at that time -- Jed Wentz directs some highly charged performances.

Historically informed recording made in 2004.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Flute Sonatas
kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Chamber Symphonies
Orchestral works by Darius Milhaud, led by Darius Milhaud Darius Milhaud The Frenchman (1892 1974) was more than 400 works of one of the most prolific composers of the 20th century. Although his name is quite common among music lovers, large parts of his oeuvres waiting for the appropriate Findings of the audience. This album summarizes major orchestral works Darius Milhaud on two CDs together: the six charming chamber symphonies opp. 43, 49, 71, 74, 75 and 79, the Piano Concerto No. 2 op. 228, the Viola Concerto No. 1 op. 108, the Concerto for Percussion and Small Orchestra, Op. 109 Suite Cisalpine Sur Des Airs Populaires Piemontais op. 332 for cello and orchestra, the ballet music L homme et son désir op. 48 and Le B uf sur le toit op . 58, La Carnaval d Aix op. 83b for piano and orchestra and the piano piece La muse ménagère op. 245 Milhaud makes conducting the most shots for maximum authenticity. The recordings were made from 1968 to 1972 originally for the label and Vox Turnabout and are now being re-released low-priced. The booklet contains detailed notes of music, some of which were written by the composer himself.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Works For Harpsichord
Father (Antoine 1679-1745) and son Jean-Baptiste (1699-1782) Forqueray had the sort of relationship that would not be out of place in a present day TV soap. They loathed each other. The father's jealousy of his son's great musical talent (Antoine was a famous virtuoso viol player) led him to have Jean-Baptiste jailed in trumped up charges of womanising and theft. And he was banished from the kingdom for 10years on pain of death. A petition from influential friends and his pupils got him released and pardoned in 1726.

In 1747 Jean-Baptiste by then the outstanding viol player of his generation published a collection 'Pieces de viole composees par M. Forqueray le pere' although the content attributable to his father is probably negligable. At the same time he published a set of transcriptions for keyboard of the same works -- a shrewd business decision. The transcriptions are extraordinary with highly virtuosic writing, including the crossing of hands in La Clement in the 4th Suite. One reason for the lavishness of the transcription could be that Jean-Baptiste had recently married the very attractive Marie-Rose Dubois who also happened to be one of the most brilliant harpsichordists the time. One can only wonder what part she played in the transcriptions.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Piano Quintets & String Quartets
Roberto Plano, piano
Quartetto Noferini

Giovanni Sgambati (1841- 914) was one of the few 19th century Italian musicians who worked outside the native operatic tradition of Donizetti and Verdi. As a conductor, composer, teacher and pianist, he promoted symphonic and chamber music alongside his younger and now more renowned colleague Giuseppe Martucci.

Records of Sgambati's music have largely confined themselves to his orchestral and piano works (as well as his magnum opus, a Requiem Mass), but transfers of a dusty 78 show him having enormous fun with the Scherzo of Dvorák's Piano Quintet.

This set redresses the balance and reveals Sgambati as a chamber musician no less accomplished in composition than performance, within the German tradition that he worked hard to introduce to Italian concert societies: Mendelssohn and Schumann are keynote influences here. The first string quartet and piano quintets are early works, dating from 1864 and 1866 respectively; the latter written in the fairly unusual key of F minor (think Tchaikovsky's Fourth Symphony) for which Sgambati appears to have had a special fondness, given the many piano pieces he also composed in that key.

The second string quartet (1882) and piano quintet (1876) are more chromatically developed to embrace some of Wagner's idiom (Sgambati also wrote a concert overture on the subject of Rienzi); and when Wagner heard Sgambati give a performance of the quintet at the Royal Court of Savoy he was sufficiently impressed to suggest to his publisher Schott that they also publish Sgambati's work. This proved to be a turning point in Sgambati's career, as well as the beginning of a friendship between the two composers. Roberto Plano's previous disc for Brilliant Classics, of the piano music of Smetana (94788), won warm critical appreciation; this new disc will likewise appeal to all fans of Romantic musical byways.

Giovanni Sgambati (1841-1914) was an important composer of 19thcentury Italy. A pupil and disciple of Franz Liszt he was one of the most brilliant pianists of his day. However, he was a composer, a conductor, a teacher and a patron as well, composing symphonies and chamber music in a country where opera was predominant.

Sgambati's musical language is romantic pur sang. Rooted in the German tradition of Mendelssohn and Schumann he was further influenced by his great mentor Franz Liszt and by Wagner (as so many in that age).

This 2CD set contains two string quartets and the two piano quintets, impressive works of substantial length, richly textured and full of instrumental virtuosity.

Excellent performances by Italian forces, the great pianist Alberto Plano (a Van Cliburn Competition winner) and the Quartetto Noferini.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Italian Arias
Alessandro Stradella composed in nearly every genre - sacred and secular, and is credited with composing the first instrumental concerto grosso, and many of his operas have accompanied recitatives. Two of them also contain the earliest mad scenes. It is perhaps in his vocal works that we can hear how innovative this composer was -- Stradella posessed a rare feel and insight on the texts he set. Combined with his total mastery of counterpoint which produced extraordinary interplay between vocal and instrumental parts, he stands out among his contemporaries as a literary and musical dramatist of the highest order.

The themes of the arias all concern love in its various guises -- adoration, tenderness, mad passion, longing, praising beauty and physical attributes, its harshness and fickle nature, the darker side of love that leads to jealousy, rage and spite, and finally to love's dissolution.... with perhaps a return to its embrace one day.

Although the music is over 300 years old, and the names of the poets unknown, Stradella's music speaks to us in a thoroughly modern way. This is music of emotional depth that sounds as fresh today as it did in the late 17th century.


kr 33 (kr 109)
Image La Stravaganza
The 12 violin concertos which Antonio Vivaldi published as "La Stravaganza" do full justice to their title: the range of expression is enormous, from the tender lyricism of the slow movements to the wild and tempestuous fast movements, where the solo violin revels in wild leaps and brilliant virtuosity.

Exceptionally vivid and energetic performances by maestro Federico Guglielmo and his L'Arte dell'Arco, playing original instruments in Historically Informed Performance Practice, never a dull moment here!

Booklet contains extensive liner notes and information on the instruments used.

Recorded in 2014 in Padua, Italy.



kr 33 (kr 109)
Image Chamber Music
Rocco Parisi, clarinet
Gabriele Rota, piano
Andrea Favalessa, cello

Riccardo Muti has done much in the orchestral arena to promote the concert music of Nino Rota who, like most film composers in the middle of the last century, wrote many traditionally ‘classical’ works and longed to be taken seriously as one capable of writing in both populist and more cerebrally satisfying styles. This disc should do much to reinvigorate his reputation as a composer of unfailingly stylish and appealing chamber music which, while never striving towards avant-garde relevance, nonetheless is marked out as music belonging to its own time – around 1950 – with post-Romantic harmonies but also a distinctively propulsive rhythmic signature, creating a tension that may remind us not only of his film music but also the late music of Bartok such as the Concerto for Orchestra. The Clarinet Trio opens with a quick waltz (here Prokofiev’s influence is apparent) and continues with an elegiac duet between clarinet and cello, and then a headlong finale. From 1945, the Clarinet Sonata is more Neoclassical and restrained in its language; then comes a very late Allegro danzante composed in 1977. Lo spiritismo nella vecchia casa is a set of incidental music for solo clarinet, written to underscore a play of the same name by Ugo Betti and structured as a set of brief variations: a form which it shares with the Variations and Fugue in the twelve keys on the name of Bach, also from 1950. These are for solo piano and reveal what a technically gifted pianist Rota himself was: ‘he played the piano like another person talks’, recalled a friend. The fugal finale is of fearsome complexity, worthy of the formidable historical precedent. All three of these musicians are experienced exponents of Rota’s music.

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Image 4 Concertinos For Guitar And Orchestra
Brazilian composers already feature in the extensive library of guitar music on Brilliant Classics: not only the obvious name of Villa-Lobos (BC9196) but on a more diverse survey by Flavio Apro (BC94810), including lesser-known names such as João Pernambuco and Egberto Gismonti whose work also fused traditional Brazilian genres with elements of jazz, classical, world and contemporary music. To their names may now be added Radamés Gnattali (1906-1988). Having composed much music of a consciously national flavour in the early part of his career, emulating Villa-Lobos, he sought a broader appeal during the 1950s with works such as these four guitar concertinos, dating between 1951 and 1967, which use neo-Romantic and neo-classical moulds while maintaining the light style often associated with symphonic jazz. The tricky balance between guitar and orchestra is skilfully handled by means of dialogue and contrast, investing the structure of each work with a degree of intimacy more usually associated with chamber music. The Second Concertino was written for Aníbal August Sardinha, known as Garoto, one of the creators of the bossa nova sound. Even though the concerto clearly reflects the guitarist’s manner of playing, the first movement also reveals the influence of American composers such as Bernstein and Gershwin, the third that of the new trends in symphonic and progressive rock music, with its pressing patterns, while the second embodies something of the melancholy typical of the bossa redolent of saudade. The Third is scored for an unusual ensemble of guitar, flute, timpani and strings, in which the flute also has a soloistic part; the Fourth returns to a string-only ensemble for accompaniment. These premiere recordings are the work of Marco Salcito, who returned to Gnattali’s original manuscripts to edit the scores afresh; all guitar-music enthusiasts will be keen to hear his work. Nikolay First recording of the complete Concertinos for guitar and orchestra by Radamés Gnattali. Radamés Gnattali (1906-1988), son of Italian immigrants, is one of the most popular and famous composers of his native Brazil, where he is mentioned in the same breath as Villa-Lobos. His music is the perfect fusion of the high and the low, of formally structured classical music and the vibrant multi-coloured folk culture of Brazil. The 4 Concertinos for guitar and orchestra are medium-sized, 3-movement works, highly entertaining and brimming with good tunes, groovy rhythms and brilliant instrumentation: a real discovery! Played with infectious enthusiasm by guitarist Marco Salcito and the Orchestra Sinfonica Abruzzese conducted by Marcello Bufalini.

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Image Complete Etudes
Alessandro Deljavan, piano

Chopin Etudes are the Mount Everest for every concert pianist: the combination of technical difficulties of the highest level and a rich and complex musical content make them even today the biggest challenge a mortal pianist can meet.

Young Italian pianist Alessandro Deljavan presents a strong and highly personal interpretation: deeply poetic and passionate, backed by a superlative technical mastery. · Deljavan is one of the most remarkable pianists of his generation. "His playing is full of intensive power and contagious artistry" (Dmitri Bashkirov), "he is one of the most interesting pianists I've heard in my life" (Fou Ts'Ong), "he is one of the most major talents of his age" (John Perry), "Jaw-dropping virtuosity and heart-stopping eloquence" (Dallas Morning News).


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Image Songs
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Image Lieder
Lenneke Ruiten, soprano
Hans Adolfsen, piano

Although Johannes Brahms (1833-1897) is best known for his symphonies, string quartets and piano music, he was also a prolific writer of lieder, composing over 200 pieces in the medium. This charming collection celebrates his wonderfully rich, lyrical style through detailing 27 such works - ones which span much of his 40-year song career.

The earliest works on the compilation date from his second lieder collection, Op.6, composed when Brahms was just eighteen years old. Also touching on his Op.14 and 16 collections (Brahms gave the first performance of Ein Sonett Op.14 No.4 with Julius Stockhausen), the collection features two songs from Op.48 - of which the Liebesklage des Mädchens 'vibrates with marvellous originality and the deepest heartfelt pain', according to the great Bach biographer Philipp Spitta. From Op.85 to Op.95, we explore the late period of a composer who set verses by such iconic poets as Geibel, Heine and Goethe. Maienkätzchen Op.107 No.4 is the final song to be featured.

Performing these works is the celebrated young Dutch soprano Lenneke Ruiten, who enjoys a busy career as a recitalist, concert soloist and opera singer. She is joined on the recording by talented pianist (and composer) Hans Adolfsen.



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Image Chamber Music for Winds
Italian Classical Consort

Caspar Kummer is a composer of unjustly little renown. Held in high esteem by his contemporaries, relatively little information can be found on his life in the leading music dictionaries of today, a fact that stands in stark contrast to his compositional excellence as well as his virtuosity as a flautist. Though Kummer rose to the position of Kapellmeister in the castle chapel of an important German duke in his later years, his creative output failed to reach a similar level of renown after his death in 1870.

The music on this collection, constructed around his favourite instrument, goes some way towards doing the composer some justice. There are a number of noticeable highlights here. Von Dir! is a fascinating attempt - on the performers' part - at 'making an instrument speak': the original vocal part is interpreted by a lyrical and otherworldly clarinet, which is in constant dialogue with the complementary flute. The challenging Adagio and Variations, meanwhile, requires a mastery of the basset horn (an instrument that, interestingly, was rather out of fashion for much of Kummer's life), pushing the instrument to the upper edge of its range. The final Trio leaves us with a suggestion of the greater stylistic variety within Kummer's work, leaning towards the Romantic rather than the dominant Classical style of the rest of the collection.

This exploration of a relatively unknown composer is undertaken by an ensemble who are appearing here for the first time on Brilliant Classics: the Italian Classical Consort, led by multi-instrumentalist Luigi Magistrelli. Even more fittingly, they specialise in performances of the muchneglected Classical and Romantic repertoire, and they are known for their concerts and masterclasses the world over.


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Image Norwegian Memories
This CD brings together three works for guitar and strings which are inspired by the majestic landscape of Norway, its fjords, mountains, springs and woods, the silence and mystique.Italian guitarist and composer Giorgio Mirto wrote his Concerto Norwegian Memories on the basis of old legends and fairy tales. The 'Viking Concerto' by Norwegian composer Gisle Krogseth is a 20th century pendant of Peer Gynt, its three movements named 'Returning from Abroad', 'Night in the Woods' and 'A Feast, a Fight and a Funeral'.Played with great intensity by the master himself, Giorgio Mirto, accompanied by the Florence String Ensemble.World Premiere recordings!


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Image Alchemies
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Image Lieder
The flowering of the German Lied tradition may be most closely associated with Schubert, but in fact the genre has much deeper roots than that. Already in the 18th century, composers such as C.P.E. Bach were forming a musical language that would set the stage for its extensive development 100 years later. At this point, they made a distinction between the 'Lied', 'Ode' and 'Hymne'; Bach strongly preferred the Lied (or song), which was composed in verses, and required an accompaniment, unlike the ode. Indeed, Bach's keyboard accompaniments were so wonderfully florid that they could be performed without the singer – as 'Handstücke', as he marked in the score. This new recording includes versions of each Lied for fortepiano solo alone alongside the standard version with the soprano, giving the listener a unique chance to experience Bach's Lieder in two different but equally authentic ways. Soprano Mariví Blasco has performed at prestigious venues across Spain, in roles as varied as Mozart (Despina in Così fan tutte at the Teatro Arenal) and Poulenc (in Dialogues des Carmélites at the Teatro Real). This is her first collaboration with renowned keyboardist Yago Mahúgo, already a prominent recording artist with Brilliant Classics, whose CDs have previously garnered high praise. A specialist in historical performance practice, Mahúgo performs on a fortepiano by Keith Hill, modelled after Anton Walter (1796). This CD contains a selection of Geistliche Oden und Lieder (sacred songs) by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, the most talented son of the great Johann Sebastian. By the end of the 18th century the Lied took its now familiar form: a strophic setting of poems for solo voice with the accompaniment of a keyboard instrument. C.P.E. Bach’s Lieder were mostly on sacred texts, by Gellert and Sturm. As always with this composer we are struck by the craftsmanship, originality and forward looking in his works. The accompaniment offers more than a simple basso continuo, they are richly written keyboard settings, featuring occasional ritornelli between the strophes. Beautifully sung by Spanish soprano Mariví Blasco, specialised in Early Music, cofounder of Accademia del Piacere and L’Arpeggiata. Yago Mahugo plays the fortepiano, is leader of the Ímpetus Madrid Baroque Ensemble and plays the keyboard solo versions of the songs as a bonus.

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Image Accordion & Guitar Concerto
Unconstrained by textbook notions of schools and -isms, the music of Paolo Ugoletti (b.1956) is unafraid of making expressive points through intense chromaticism, painful dissonance and good, old-fashioned C major, as these two quite different works show. The first, apparently abstract, piece is an instrumental concerto that both exploits and transcends familiarity and associative notions of its solo instruments with popular idioms, travelling from Piazzolla's smoke-filled nightclubs to the melancholy sidewalks of the Seine in search of a personal idiom that is significantly influenced both by his studies with the Italian modernist Franco Donatoni and by personal enthusiasm for the improvisatory spirit of Irish folk music.

The American poet Emily Dickinson is one of Ugoletti's favourite writers, and he has set six of her poems in a cycle that is as allusive, detailed and exuberant as the poet's own language, and dedicated it to the soloist on this recording, the Chinese soprano Lin Ling Hui.



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Image Classical Oboe Concertos
Andrius Puskunigis, oboe
St. Christopher Chamber Orchestra / Donatas Katkus

From around 1750 the oboe, an instrument hitherto largely used in chamber music and church music, began to make its way into the concert halls, and to be played by virtuoso soloists. The Oboe Concertos on this new recording represent the Classical Viennese Style, with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as its undisputed genius. Although the other composers, Ferlendis, Ditters von Dittersdorf and Hofmann are lesser known, their Oboe (or Oboe d'Amore) Concertos share the same grace, sparkle and melodious flow as Mozart's masterwork.


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Image Chamber Music
Domenico Bartolucci was in some ways a 20th-century descendant of the liturgical musicians who composed for the church – and especially the Catholic church in Italy – during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. Born in 1917, he was appointed Master of Music at the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, but he also taught at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome. Most of his considerable output was, naturally, sacred in form and purpose: not only motets and mass settings but symphonic oratorios and even a sacred opera based on the life of the painter Brunelleschi. He was appointed a cardinal in 2010 and died in 2013. Very little of his music has been recorded. Here, however, is a new studio recording of his chamber music, made in the Pontifical Institute for Sacred Music in Rome. The genre of Prelude, Intermezzo and Fugue implies a keyboard work of the type written by Bach or Franck; here, however, are two examples scored for violin/cello duet and for string trio, both demonstrating Bartolucci’s considerable mastery of counterpoint. They are joined by a Piano Trio with a lovely second-movement Canzone, and a Violin Sonata of engaging richness: there are moments of great passion in the first movement, of elegiac delicacy in the slow movement, grotesque elements in the third movement, and a luminous fluidity reminiscent of Mozart in the finale. The language itself is comparatively conservative – as one would expect from his training and position, Bartolucci was no Modernist – but also melodically appealing, and always sympathetically written for his forces. The instrumentalists recorded here have been performing Bartolucci’s music for over two decades: they are uniquely authoritative interpreters of an idiom that prizes beauty above all things.

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Image Complete Music for Cello
Born in the Ukraine in 1937, Nikolai Kapustin has written over 160 works, most of them involving the piano of which he is himself a skilled performer. Though his music has been associated with the ‘Third Stream’ that brings together jazz and classical idioms (a term first coined by the American musician and polymath Gunther Schuller), Kapustin rejects the term for himself: ‘the classical part is more important. The jazz style is there to give colour – I don’t like jazz ‘forms’… which is why I've adopted those from classical music.’ All the same, there is an unmistakably bluesy, relaxed quality to the Second Cello Sonata from 1998. Kapustin has composed more for the cello than any other instrument, and the instrument’s natural affinity with both lyricism and melancholy make a good fit for his own style. Towards the end of the finale there is a momentary sense of dislocation as the cello launches into the Prelude from Bach’s First Cello Suite before the two instruments drag the movement back into the modern world. The First Sonata from seven years earlier is briefer and spikier, less expressively effusive but at the same time written more within the cello-sonata tradition from Brahms to Adès, with a central Sarabande and driving Scherzo. The album is completed by three miniatures, all fine examples of Kapustin’s good-humoured fusion of idioms: the Nearly Waltz, an Elegy and a Burlesque. They are performed here by a dynamic, recently formed duo named happily after the pianist Clorinda Perfetto. Throughout 2017 they have together been touring the major music festivals of Europe. This is their first internationally distributed album.

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Image Piano Music for Children
Klára Würtz, piano
Prima La Musica / Dirk Vermeulen

This new compilation presents a charming selection of piano music for children. Alongside the familiar melodies of Beethoven's Für Elise and Mozart's Rondo alla Turca are Tchaikovsky's Album for the Young and Debussy's exuberant Children's Corner, including the famous 'Golliwog's Cakewalk'. Robert Schumann's playful Kinderszenen (Scenes from Childhood) include pieces with titles such as 'At the Fireside', 'Frightening' and 'Blind Man's Bluff', which are sure to enchant children of all ages. The orchestral players of 'Prima La Musica' join the piano for the well-known Andante from Mozart's Piano Concerto No.21, with its dreamlike melody heard in the violin and piano parts. Children will undoubtedly be captivated by the variety of delightful music offered in this tailor-made collection.

Hungarian pianist Klára Würtz is one of Brilliant Classics' most prolific artists, enjoying an international career. Having won prizes in Dublin and Milan, she signed to a New York-based management company, leading to performances at Carnegie Hall and other prestigious concert venues throughout the US and Canada. She currently teaches at the Conservatory of Arts in Utrecht.

This CD is a reissue of one of the most successful Brilliant Classics recordings, Piano Music for Children, a simple and powerful concept aimed at a wide audience of music lovers, teachers, parents, grandparents and (of course..) children.

Included are the popular Kinderszenen by Robert Schumann, Children's Corner by Claude Debussy and a selection from the Album for the Youth by Tchaikovsky, and not to forget the most iconic work for a child ever written: Beethoven's Für Elise.

Hungarian pianist Klára Würtz plays with a natural, direct expression, warm and communicative.


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Image Easy Studies for Guitar Volume 2
This second volume in the 3-part series of Easy Studies for Guitar (the first was released in December 2016, BC95402) continues to focus on lesser-known modern compositions that lend themselves to teaching the guitar. The aim of the series is to further awareness and understanding of musical idioms that do not necessarily reflect traditional preconceptions of classical harmony. The selection by Cristiano Porqueddu was determined by a number of features: music without a strong sense of tonality; a wide range of timbre; and a polyphonic conception of the instrument. Volume 2 begins with the second collection of 12 Easy Pieces for Guitar by the Polish composer, Alexandre Tansman – the first collection having been included within Volume 1. These delightful, elegant studies reveal meticulous construction and a certain constancy of form that speak for the composer’s inventive skill. Stephen Dodgson (1924-2013) wrote works for the guitar that attracted the attention of outstanding performers such as Julian Bream and John Williams: these Transitional Studies call for more advanced skill than the other works on the album. Unlike the other works here, the limpid collection of Ten Progressive Studies by the Italian guitarist and composer Franco Cavallone (1957) does not aim at improving technique, but at helping the player master control of sound and colour. The Hungarian composer Iván Patachich (1922-1993) wrote two collections of Gyermekdalok gitárra (Children’s Songs for Guitar) published in 1978, a series of fresh, original vignettes that belie the composer’s remarkable technical skill and elegance. The music of Manuel Ponce is better known than any of the previous composers: he wrote the Six Short Preludes for Juanita, the young daughter of the Mexican composer Carlos Chávez, shortly after she had begun to study the guitar. Nonetheless, in simplifying his idiom Ponce managed not to drain his music of its vivacity: the result is music that guitarists of all abilities will take pleasure from. This second volume in the 3-part series of “Easy Studies for Guitar” continues to focus on lesser-known original compositions for the guitar of the 20th and 21st century that lend themselves to teaching purposes. The aim is to develop the awareness of musical styles and structures beyond the restrictions of Classical Music, in terms of harmony, rhythm and a wide range of timbres. Included are works by Alexandre Tansman, Stephen Dodgson, Franco Cavallone, Ivan Patachich and Manuel Ponce. In its small scale the music is utterly charming, entertaining and innovative, a joy for both guitar amateur and music lover. Cristiano Porqueddu is one of today’s foremost guitarists. Critics call him “A reference point for a new generation of musicians”. His recent Carnegie Hall recital was a triumph: “he has the vision and fortitude to forge a new and substantial path by discovering, recording and performing great works that have been largely ignored” (Brooklyn Daily Eagle). His Brilliant classics discography is substantial and impressive and includes works by Barrios, Sor, Gilardino, and many others.

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Image Soledad Tengo De Ti
Little is known about the life of Spanish composer Juan Vasquez, fl. 16th century. A skilled and successful composer, he was in the service of the King of Spain. His compositions are mainly secular, in the form of polyphonic madrigals and “Villancicos,” popular songs set for a vocal ensemble of 3 or 4 voices. The Villancicos are based on folk music and traditional texts, peasant melodies brimming with joy, happiness and Spanish vitality. The works on this release have been taken from Vasquez’s two collections, published in 1551 and 1560. This release includes several previously unrecorded items. Spanish Early Music group Vandalia performs this music with infectious enthusiasm. The group consists of 4 excellent vocal soloists, accompanied by the Iberian Harp.

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Image Complete Violin Sonatas
A matter of months separate the first two of violin sonatas by Leo Ornstein (1893-2002) – the spring of 1915 in which the world was tearing itself apart in conflict – but, as if to mirror their times, the musical styles they explore are poles apart. The First Sonata is a long, four-movement work in a late-Romantic vein. Only the descending clusters in the piano part of the second movement give notice of the fiercely Modernist rhetoric of the Second Sonata, in which the 20-something tyro composer himself admitted that he brought music ‘to the very edge... I simply drew back and said, ‘beyond that lies complete chaos’. In fact the four movements – much briefer than the First, but still traditionally disposed, with an Andante espressivo second movement – inhabit the realm of Expressionist angst shared by Arnold Schoenberg’s music of the period, including the Five Orchestral Pieces and Erwartung. Brilliant Classics presents the first opportunity on record to compare and contrast these richly fascinating works, and in a new recording made by Italian instrumentalists who show themselves in deep sympathy with Ornstein’s protean creative world. The brief, single-movement Third Sonata dates from around 15 years later. It is characterized by a harsh, almost alienated lyricism, and by many references to the Jewish culture that became explicit in the Hebraic Fantasy, written in 1929 for the celebration of Alfred Einstein’s 50th birthday. The Three Pieces represent most of Ornstein’s writing for the flute: written separately within the 1950s, they show a composer who had reinvented himself once more to write with melodic charm, and in a mood of peaceful serenity. This disc should be a fascinating discovery for all followers of 20th-century music. Leo Ornstein was born in 1895 in the Ukraine, and emigrated with his family in 1906 to the USA, where he became a famous pianist and leading figure in the American Avant-Garde, writing highly experimental music in which tonal clusters played an important role. Halfway the 20ties he withdrew from public life and founded his own music School the Ornstein School of Music. He continued composing but was largely forgotten till the revival by his son in the 70ties. Ornstein’s works show a wide variety, from Post-Romantic works in the tradition of Grieg and Franck to pieces of shocking modernity and savagery. This 2CD set contains the complete music for violin and piano and for flute and piano, music of a highly original spirit, who died at the advanced age of 108 in the year 2002. Played with great conviction and dedication by violinist Francesco Parrino, flutist Stefano Parrino and pianist Maud Renier. The booklet contains excellent liner notes as well as a personal assessment by the son Severo Ornstein.

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Image Violin Sonatas
Giorgio Leonida Tosi, baroque violin
Ileana Frontini, piano
Paolo Porto, piano

To dub Friedrich Kuhlau (1786-1832) the Danish Beethoven might be stretching a point, especially since he only moved from North Germany to Copenhagen at the age of 24, but Denmark could boast no more accomplished composers in the high noon of the Classical age, and it welcomed so prodigious a musician – not only composer but pianist, conductor and scholar – whose greatest successes during his lifetime were in the field of opera, at least until his premature death at the age of just 48, probably from hard living as much as financial problems: the story goes that when the Queen of Denmark invited him to take tea at the palace, he replied that he would accept only if drink was on offer.

Most of his chamber music features the flute, a commercially astute selection given the popularity of the instrument among amateur musicians at the time, even though Kuhlau was no flautist himself. There are, however, three piano quartets, a late string quartet closely modelled on Beethoven’s Op.132, and four violin sonatas. This Op.79 set was composed as a trio in Copenhagen in 1826, the year after he got drunk on champagne one evening with Beethoven, who wrote a canon at the time and sent it along later with a mock-apology: ‘In this case, I haven’t the slightest memory of what I wrote yesterday… Think of me now and again, your devoted Beethoven.’

All three sonatas are melodically fresh, dramatically imposing works that should not stand too shyly in the shadow of Beethoven’s contributions to the genre: the first and third are largely extrovert, whereas the second is thoughtful and intimate in character. The sonatas are juxtaposed here with late and brilliant works for piano four hands which may reveal the influence of Schubert, so unconventional is their form, so bold the evocation of Romantic sonorities on the keyboard: on this album of historically informed performances by young Italian musicians, the instrument used is a Stein piano of Viennese manufacture, dating from 1830.

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Image Complete Music for Violin & Piano
Erwin Schulhoff was a Czech composer of German-Jewish descent. He received his musical education in Cologne, Leipzig and Vienna. Under the Nazis he was captured for his Jewish identity and his music, which the Germans considered “Entartet.” Tragically, he died in a concentration camp in 1942. Schulhoff’s music started in the late romantic style of Brahms and Reger. Later he was influenced by the newly developed Jazz music, Dadaism and Czech folk music, all three fused into his own personal musical language. This new recording presents his complete output for violin and piano: one violin solo sonata, two sonatas for violin and piano and a suite for violin and piano. This is highly original and dramatic music in which the tension of the “Zeitgeist” is everywhere apparent. Here, this music is performed by Bruno Monteiro and Joao Paolo Santos, who have already successfully recorded the music for violin and piano by Szymanowski for Brilliant Classics.

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Image Cello Sonatas
Marco Testori, cello
Costantino Mastroprmiano, piano

A delightful programme of Early-Romantic cello sonatas by Ries, Moscheles and Hummel.

Ferdinand Ries, Ignaz Moscheles and Johann Nepomuk Hummel are contemporaries, active in a period of transition from Classical to Romantic style, all three strongly influenced by the musical giant Ludwig van Beethoven, virtuoso pianists and all three “Minor Masters”.

Their cello sonatas follow classical style principles, spiced with interruptions of romantic outpouring of drama and emotions: highly enjoyable!

Played on period instruments by cellist Marco Testori and Costantino Mastroprimiano, playing an early 19th century fortepiano.

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Image Carnaval Vénitien
Gabriella Morelli, Giancarlo Simonacci (piano 4-hands)

The name of Ricordi is best known as one of the most famous and prestigious music publishing houses of the world. Founded by his grandfather Giovanni, the firm gained great reputation under Giulio Ricordi's leadership, notably by publishing Verdi's operas.

Giulio not only had a good nose for quality music and commerce, but he was also a composer himself. This CD presents his works for piano 4-hands, salon music of high quality, very much "en vogue" in that time. The titles of the pieces give a clear indication of the style: Carnaval vénitien, Le bal de la poupée, Le livre des Sérénades, Galop abracadabrant...

Played with obvious enjoyment by the Duo Pianistico, Gabriella Morelli and Giancarlo Simonacci.


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Image Viola Sonatas Op.120, 2 Gesange Op.91
This new release includes Brahm’s complete music in which the viola plays a solo part: the two Sonatas Op. 120 and the 2 Gesange Op. 91, for alto, viola and piano. Brahms’ two viola sonatas are masterworks of his late style: the perfect handling of the sonata form sets the structure for autumnal reminiscenses and melancholic introspection, alternated by either passionate or tender interludes. These songs are performed beautifully by violinists Luca Sanzo and pianist Maurizio Paciariello, who made an excellent recording of Hindemith’s Viola Sonatas for Brilliant Clssics. A special treat is the voice of Sara Mingardo in the Zwei Gesange, one of the foremost altos of today, who sung with Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Myung-Whun-Chung, Rinaldo Alessandrini.

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Image Chamber Music
Often cited as the most distinguished neoclassical composer of post-war America, Robert Muczynski (1929-2010) was born in Chicago to Polish parents. This album of chamber music surveys an output which is always restless and unpredictable thanks to the embrace of both Bartokian harmonies and structures as well as the more lyrical yet open-ended language of Samuel Barber. The Cello Sonata of 1968 is often considered to be Muczynski’s chamber music masterpiece, in which the problems of balance and register inherent to the genre are not only solved but transcended with a mastery especially evident in the central Scherzo. From a year later, the Fantasy Trio Op.26 is a welcome addition to the clarinet-cello-piano trio genre established by Beethoven. Energy and punchy rhythmic interplay are hallmarks of Muczynski’s music, as the earlier Flute Sonata engagingly demonstrates: in its whimsical, abrupt, headstrong progress through a compact four-movement form, it may even be considered the most important such work by an American composer. Muczynski took technical agility and devil-may-care confidence for granted in his interpreters; in this case, an international quartet of musicians based in the US. There is an extended booklet essay by the pianist Dmitry Samogray which places both composer and works in invaluable context. Any listeners curious to fill out their appreciation of American music beyond Copland and Bernstein will want to hear this release. Robert Muczynski (1929-2010) was born in Chicago, son of a Polish and Slovak immigrant. At the age of 5 he started his piano lessons, and later studied at the DePaul University composition with Walter Knupfer and Alexander Tcherepnin. Muczynski may safely be called the most important neoclassical composer of post-war America. His style bears influences from Bartók, Barber, Bernstein and occasional jazz elements. This new recording contains some delightful chamber for various instruments: the flute sonata, trio for clarinet, cello & piano, the cello sonata, and duos for flute and clarinet: attractive music full of vitality and exuberant energy. Wonderful performances by Ginevra Petrucci (flute), Dorotea Racz (cello), Gleb Kanasevich (clarinet) and Dmitry Samogray (piano), all four of them seasoned soloists and ensemble players. The booklet contains excellent liner notes written by Dmitry Samogray.

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Image Per Anni Circulum, Gregorian Chant
Schola Gregoriana Benedetto XVI / Don Nicola Bellinazzo

This new recording of Gregorian Chant presents a journey through the complete Liturgical Year: Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter and Ordinary Time, the ever-recurring spiritual cycle, caught in the timeless medieval melodies of Gregorian Chant, as it was and as it always will be.

Sung with devotion and clear intonation by the Schola Gregoriana Benedetto XVI from Bologna, and recorded in the spacious and warm acoustics of the St. Christina’s Church in Bologna.

The booklet contains excellent liner notes as well as the sung texts.

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Image Guitar Vibes
Izhar Elias has produced several successful and imaginative albums for Brilliant Classics. None of them have confirmed to a ‘Spanish guitar’ stereotype but all have engaged in various original ways with the developing heritage of the instrument during the 19th century, from ‘Paisiello in Vienna’ (BC95301) to ‘Beethoven and the Guitar’ (BC94631) to Giuliani’s astonishing transcription of Rossini’s grand tragedy Semiramide (BC93902). His latest recording brings the classical guitar up to date with works by composers from four different countries; within them may be heard influences from classical music, avant-garde, Caribbean music, Spanish folklore, flamenco, Arabic music, blues, Argentinean tango and even trip-hop and heavy metal: provocative testament to the world’s most versatile instrument. The Guernica Suite by Pujol (b.1959) focuses on different aspects of Picasso’s painting in six movements, with a tentatively positive conclusion. The Triptych of Roberto Sierra (b.1953) evokes some nocturnal sounds from his native Puerto Rico, including the tropical tree frog as well as a night on the tiles. The three Danzas Concertantes pulse and glide with the rhythms of Leo Brouwer’s native Cuba, offset by some astringent harmonies that place the guitar’s usual role as purveyor of folkloristic colour under threat. Finally there is the Schattenspiel Suite by Florian Magnus Maier (b.1973), who also plays electric Moog guitar on this recording. Maier pursues a diverse career as a composer, guitarist and vocalist with bands including Alkaloid, Dark Fortress and Noneuclid; this tripartite suite inspired by shadows is his best-known work in the classical tradition, and for this recording he has made a new arrangement for two guitars and string quartet. There is something for everyone on this album: it’s essential listening for guitar-music enthusiasts who want to broaden their horizons. For this exciting new recording Dutch guitarist Izhar Elias selected 4 works for guitar and strings to show the versatility of his instrument. In these works by Brouwer, Pujol , Sierra and Maier influences can be traced from classical music, Avant-Garde, Caribbean music, Spanish folklore, Flamenco, Arabic music, tango, blues and even trip-hop and heavy metal: fascinating! Izhar Elias secured the collaboration of world-class musicians (composer Florian Magnus Maier plays the Moog electric guitar), each bringing a different musical background and an open mind. In the booklet text each composer comments on his own work, a better introduction is hardly possible.

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Image Latin American Guitar Music
Deion Cho, guitar

This is the CD debut of Korean guitarist Deion Cho, first prize winner of the Concorso Internacional de Guitarra Clásica Gredos San Diego.

For his first CD Cho chose 4 leading 20-th century guitar composers, differing in style and tradition: Ginastera, Lauro, Montaña and Martínez Palacios.

Although all originating from South America the composer's styles differ greatly: from the neoclassical idiom to folk inspired, from charming Waltzes to harsh expressionism.

All these dazzling, attractive works make full use of the resources of the guitar and show the prodigious gift of this young virtuoso, Deion Cho.


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Image El aire se serena - 16th century Spanish music
Seldom Sene

This beautifully conceived CD presents music from the Courts and Cathedrals of 16th century Spain. The composers include Cabezon, Geurrero, Penalosa, Vasquez, Morales, Victoria, Milano, Lobo, Torre and Caroso. One of the main practices in 16-th century Spain was the transcription or arrangements of vocal music from the Franco-Flemish School. Masses, motets and madrigals by Gomberg, Josquin and others were transcribed for instrumental ensembles. · Seldom Sene is a recorder ensemble from the Netherlands. The ensemble's aim is to translate the typical phrasing, blending, flexibility and expression of a vocal ensemble into an instrumental performance, and recreate the sense of Serenity and Brilliance as is described in the CD's title. Seldom Sene already recorded a successful CD for Brilliant Classics, Taracea BC94871, Gramophone wrote: "commitment, technical versatility, unanimity of ensemble and near-immaculate tuning on display". Dutch newspaper Early Music Review wrote: "Seldom Sene perceptively exploited a range of contrasting textures, and was the only ensemble of the day whose memorisation of the dots enabled unbridled spontaneity."


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Image Chamber Music With Bassoon
Andrea Bressan, bassoon
Mario Paladin, viola

Ex Novo Ensemble
Schola Cantorum San Rocco

Philippe Hersant (born 1948) is one of the most remarkable and successful composers of his native France. A student of André Jolivet he embraced tonality and modality, finding his own unique voice, eclectic, open and appealing to a wide audience. He won numerous prizes: Grand Prix de la ville de Paris, Grand Prix SACEM, Victoires de la Musique Classique 2016, and the Légion d’honneur.

This new recording presents his music for the bassoon, a still neglected but versatile and expressive wind instrument. Included are the duos for bassoon and viola, 8 Pieces for bassoon and instrumental ensemble and works for bassoon solo.

Played with great conviction and imagination by Italian bassoonist Andrea Bressan and the Ex Novo Ensemble.

Liner notes written by the composer.

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Image Sonatas for Harpsicord and Violin
Johann Christian was one of the most successful of the famous sons of Johann Sebastian Bach. After arriving in London and becoming music master to Queen Charlotte, he forged a friendship with the young Mozart and composed a great deal of chamber music before focusing his career on Italian opera (in stark contrast to his siblings). The music recorded here his Op.16 sonatas for harpsichord and violin is often characterised by flowing, singing lines, derived in large part from his experience in the opera house and form a significant part of the large volume of chamber music he composed during his promising career.Though containing just two movements, each sonata still displays an enormous amount of variety, with the first movement normally cast as a fast movement that is followed by a slower one in a more reflective or restrained style. Both regularly feature themes from popular songs, with frequent use of repetition. The balance between the instruments is of also of interest: the violin is on an equal footing with the harpsichord throughout, promoting a musical dialogue that is as much about technicality as it is about melodic development.J.C. Bachs Sonatas are performed by the UinskyteRuggeri Duo: founded in 2012, they focus on performing music from the Baroque era through to the 19th century. This is Marco Ruggeris second disc for Brilliant Classics, following an album of organ music by the 19thcentury composer Padre Davide Da Bergamo in November last year. Lithuanian violinist Lina Uinskyte makes her debut in this recording.


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Image Beethoven and the Guitar
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Image Piccolo Concertos
This unique and fascinating programme features concertante works for piccolo and orchestra. The Piccolo Concerto by Lowell Liebermann was first performed and recorded by James Galway, and gained international fame. Liebermann is one of America’s most frequently performed and recorded living composers. The New York Times said of him: “As much as a traditionalist as an innovator.” The two contemporary works by Carla Galante and Alessandro Cavicchi, which are receiving here their first recordings, are written for and performed on the new MINI instrument by the famous flute builder Nagahara. It boasts improved dynamic contrast, better blending capabilities and an extended range. As a bonus, this release ends with a transcription of Mozart’s Oboe Quartet K370, for piccolo and strings.

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Image Les Deux Chasseurs Et La Laitière
Les deux chasseurs et la laitiere, a one-act opera by Egidio Romualdo Duno (1708-1775), was premiered in Paris by the company of Theatre de Comediens Italiens, in July 1763. This work, staged then many times at the Opera Comique, was soon published and its popularity among European theatres reached its peak between the 1780s and the beginning of the 19th century. The opera is written in the Galant Style: small size, fast-paced action, sharp sense of humour, amusing spoken dialogues and, above all, very light and cleverly written music, made this piece one of the most popular operas not only in Paris of the time. The libretto is based on two fables by De La Fontaine, ingeniously combining two plots involving two hunters and a milk jug. This is a vibrant performance on period instruments by the Accademia dell’Arcadia from the Polish Poznan, featuring three excellent young Polish vocal soloists. Conductor is Early music specialist Roberto Balconi, who has already issued successful recordings on Brilliant Classics.

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Image Motets
Modus Ensemble / Mauro Marchetti

Claudio Merulo (1533-1604) held the prestigious post of first organist of the San Marco in Venice. Although he was a key figure in the development of keyboard music he also wrote a large number of vocal works of great importance: masses, motets and madrigals.

Merulo's Motets, though standing in the tradition of the High Renaissance, reveal an innovative form and linguistic freedom. In his 5-part Motets for single choir the initial imitative counterpoints develops into antiphonal sections and ritornello passages that anticipate the "concertato" style of the emerging Baroque period.

The Italian Modus Ensemble, conducted by Mauro Marchetti, is accompanied by viola da gamba, violone, theorbo and organ.

The complete sung texts in the original language are included in the booklet.


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Image Vea Yo Los Ojos Bellos, Music From The Time Of Cer
2016 has seen much commemoration around the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. However, Shakespeare was not the only European writer to pass away in 1616 – in fact, his death on April 23rd of that year was preceded by just one day by that of his contemporary, the Spaniard Miguel de Cervantes. A novelist rather than a playwright, Cervantes is best known for the extraordinary work Don Quixote. This book, alongside many of his other works –including the Novelas ejemplares and La Galatea – form the backbone of Spanish literature. This release brings together a selection of songs for tenor by composers contemporary with Cervantes. The artists have chosen short extracts from works by Cervantes (printed alongside the sung texts in the CD booklet) to thematically link the songs together, drawing the listener into the musical world in which Cervantes lived and worked. Luz y Norte ('Light and Guide') are a young Spanish ensemble, comprising a tenor, viola da gamba, harp and percussion, although the instrumentation varies according to the repertoire. All the members of the group are experienced both as soloists and as members of other prestigious early music groups. They have performed at numerous festivals, united by their shared desire to spread knowledge of the vocal and instrumental repertoire of Renaissance and Baroque Spain. This fascinating programme is a homage to the literary genius from Madrid, Miguel Cervantes, on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of his death. Presented are vocal works by some of the greatest composers of the Spanish Baroque, Marín, Del Vado, Parades, Durón, next to instrumental pieces by way of transition, all linked by extracts from a number of Cervantes’ works, each of which evokes, in a variety of manner, the theme and character of the piece that can be heard immediately after it. This is the CD debut of an exciting new group Luz y Norte, specialising in the research and performance of vocal and instrumental works from the Renaissance and Early Baroque, with a special focus on Spain. The group consists of a tenor, historical harp, viola da gamba and percussion. The complete texts in original language are included in the booklet. Recorded in Alconadilla, Segovia, Spain, in September 2015. Contains liner notes written by the artists. Contains the sung texts in Spanish alongside extracts from works by Miguel de Cervantes.

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Image El Otro Astor - Music For Guitar And Strings
Alessio Nebiolo, guitar
Nadio Marenco, accordeon
Alessandro Schillaci, double bass
Quartett Orfeo

Most albums of music by the undisputed master of Argentine tango, Astor Piazzolla are still issued at full price but following the success of 'Café 1930' (94896) with guitarist Andrea Dieci and violinist Piercarlo Sacco, Brilliant Classics presents some of the composer's best-loved ensemble works. The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires is a chic 20th-century counterpart to Vivaldi's cycle of violin concertos, and has been paired as such in performance and on record by Gidon Kremer among others, as Piazzolla's music has always been susceptible to sympathetic arrangement; here the cycle of four character pieces is performed in a version (created by the guitarist Giorgio Mirto, who has made many albums for Brilliant Classics) nearer to its origins as a piece for Piazzolla to play on bandoneon with his tango quartet.

The five Tango Sensations are heard in an arrangement adapted from one made by Manuel Barrueco, where the solo bandoneon part has been reassigned to the guitar, rather than the more common arrangements for chamber orchestra which arose after Piazzolla's death in 1990; the recording sessions with the Kronos Quartet were the last he attended, and the music itself may reflect a 'late' character of melancholy which is shared by the concerto he wrote in 1985 for bandoneon and guitar. Here the parts for string orchestra are played one to a part by the members of QuartettOrfeo, an exciting young string quartet based in Rome. The album is rounded off by an arrangement made especially for this recording of the Ave maria which has become such a signature tune for Piazzolla, and featured on many film soundtracks.

The album overall is a fine demonstration of Yo-Yo Ma's remarks about Piazzolla: 'His music is endlessly passionate, full of yearning and at the same time tremendously contemporary. There's a quote to the effect that Piazzolla is the Ellington of Argentina, and in a way it's true. The music grew in him and he adeptly incorporated the influence of his surroundings whether from New York, Paris or Buenos Aires.'

This fascinating disc contains lesser known music by Astor Piazzolla, in arrangements for guitar, (accordion) and string quartet, a formation with which Piazzolla himself performed many of his works.

The music, vintage Piazzolla, breathes the pulse of Buenos Aires, the bohemian atmosphere, the yearning, the joy, the passion and the ever present Tango melancholy. Included are The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires, The Five Tango Sensations, the Concerto for Bandoneon, Guitar and Strings and the Ave Maria.

Performed by virtuoso guitarist Alessio Nebiolo (winner of numerous International guitar Competitions), the QuartettOrfeo, and Nadio Marenco, accordion.

Booklet contains excellent liner notes and artist biographies.


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Image Complete Recorder Sonatas from Il Pastor Fido
Stefano Bagliono, recorder
Andrea Coen, (harpsichord, organ

Collegium Pro Musica

The Baroque recorder sonatas on this CD bear the title 'Il pastor fido', a hugely popular play by Giovanni Guarini, which inspired many composers with its sensuous, pastoral and 'romantic' atmosphere.

The sonatas were attributed to Antonio Vivaldi (because of the commercial power of his fame) until in 1990 proof was found that they had been written by the French composer Nicolas Chédeville, who borrowed material from Vivaldi and other composers, and developed it in the same idiom.

These are excellent performances by the ensemble Pro Musica, elite players from the Italian Early Music scene.

Extensive liner notes on the history of this exquisite and charming music are contained in the booklet, in English and Italian.


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Image Complete Organ Music
Manuel Tomadin
Schnitger Organ of St Michaëlskerk, Zwolle, The Netherlands

This new recording features the magnificent Schnitger organ of the St. Michael Church in Zwolle, the Netherlands. It was built in 1721 by Arp Schnitger and his sons, and after careful restoration over the last decades by Flentrop the organ is restored in its full glory, one of the finest examples of the Golden Age of organ building, the Baroque.

The works on this recording are derived from the Husumer Orgelbuch (Husum organ book), a collection of organ works by North German major and minor masters. Presented are substantial Preludes by Georg Wilhelm Saxer, Choralvorspiele by Daniel Erich and two Concertos by Wolfgang Druckenmüller, written in the Italian style, as original compositions and not as transcriptions of Italian Concerti grossi, as was the custom of that period.

Manuel Tomadin is one of the foremost Italian organists, a scholar, teacher and passionate musician. He won the Grand Prix of the Schnitger Organ Competition of Alkmaar in 2011, and recorded several CD’s for Brilliant Classics, among which the complete keyboard works by Alberti (BC95161). He wrote the excellent liner notes for the booklet, which also contains all information on the organ.

kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Invisible: Cello Concertos
According to Early Music Review, ‘Easy lyricism and musicality’ was a hallmark of Adriano Maria Fazio’s debut for Brilliant Classics in six cello sonatas by Porpora. Now the cellist continues his exploration of the birth of his instrument’s repertoire with three concertos which significantly enlarged and redefined wider understanding of the cello, not merely as a textural and harmonic underpinning element for another melody instrument but as more than capable of holding the limelight in its own right. Fazio returns first to Porpora, with a G major Concerto which is not so well known as another A minor work in the same genre, but is no less shapely or melodically rewarding. Here already are complex technical challenges which far outstrip anything required of the cello in basso continuo mode, such as thumb position and intensive use of the higher register. Porpora it was who, having left his native Naples to settle in Vienna, took on the teenage Joseph Haydn as an assistant. Under the elder composer’s guidance, Haydn’s musicianship was greatly refined, not only as a composer but a singer and instrumentalist. Thus the present recording presents a very rare opportunity to hear the extent of Haydn’s debt to Porpora. And just as Porpora must have had a formidable soloist in mind to write the G major Concerto, so Haydn, now employed at Esterhazy, could call upon the formidable talents of the court orchestra’s principal cellist, Joseph Weigl. The C major Concerto remains Haydn’s most splendidly virtuosic concerto for any instrument, written to fit the full capacity of a soloist like a kidleather glove, daring and yet effortlessly stylish. In between Haydn and Porpora, Adriano Maria Fazio places the G minor Concerto of Georg Philipp Monn, which was revived in the middle of the 20th century by an unlikely but successful reorchestration for updated orchestral forces by Arnold Schoenberg. These days, however, Monn’s original stands on its own two feet, as a missing link between Porpora’s effervescent but formal Italian Baroque style and Haydn’s brand of Viennese Classicism.

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Image Overtures for Organ
Although usually performed by large orchestras, this new release brings the overture an introduction to an opera, ballet, suite or oratorio to the organ, in innovative arrangements for four hands. The transcription of orchestral materialonto the keyboard has proved popular throughout history, as it brought celebrated concert hall music to more intimate, domestic venues. Arrangements for two players became more fashionable during the second half of the 19th century, through virtuoso pianists such as Max Reger and Franz Liszt.On this recording, overtures from across the centuries are brought alive in imaginative duets. From the solemn, majestic introductions to Handels Water Music and Bachs third Orchestral Suite to the familiar strains of the troubadour song in the overture to Bizets Carmen, and the dreamlike, imaginary world of Tchaikovskys Nutcracker Suite overture, the grandiose repertoire heard here is nothing but diverse.In contrast to the piano, the different combinations of stops possible on the organallow a variety of timbres, so that the hue of the orchestral version remains largely intact. Italian organists Pietro Pasquini and Francesco Zuvadelli have also made further adjustments and additions to existing keyboard arrangements by established omposers, carefully bringing out a wealth of colours and phrases from the original compositions. They have selected two organs to reflect the contrasting nature of the music the pieces by Bach, Handel and Mozart were recorded on a Baroquestyle German organ, while the pieces by Beethoven, Bizet, Tchaikovsky and Rossini were recorded on a vast Italian organ of the 1800s, conceived and built like a large orchestra for the performance of the operatic music that held sway in Italy during the 19th century.


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Image Piano Sonata in E / Quattro Fantasie
Pietro De Maria, piano

Guido Alberto Fano was born in Padua in 1875. After his studies with Martucci he went to Germany and Austria to develop as a pianist and composer, and received support from Richard Strauss, who thought highly of him. During his long lifetime (he died in 1961) he held important posts at the conservatories of Naples and Milan, active as a promotor of Italian instrumental music.

Fano’s substantial E major Piano Sonata (over 35 minutes) is written in late romantic style, rich and dense, highly polyphonic and chromatic and of the highest technical level (Busoni loved the work). It is one of the most important Italian piano sonatas, on a par with the Martucci sonata. The four Fantasies are lighter in mood, a warm Mediterranean pendant of Schumann and Brahms.

Superb performance by one of Italy’s foremost pianists, Pietro de Maria, who recorded for Decca the complete piano works of Chopin.

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Image Complete Waltzes
Alessandro Deljavan, piano

Chopin's waltzes are written for the Parisian salon, for a sophisticated audience of artists and aristocracy. Though more 'light hearted' than most of his other compositions, they bear the unmistakable genius of Chopin: refined and exquisite pianism, brilliance and melancholy, sorrow and joy go hand in hand.

Italian Alessandro Deljavan is one of the most remarkable pianists of his generation: "His playing is full of intensive power and contagious artistry" (Dmitri Bashkirov), "he is one of the most interesting pianists I've heard in my life" (Fou Ts'Ong), "he is one of the most major talents of his age" (John Perry), "Jaw-dropping virtuosity and heart-stopping eloquence" (Dallas Morning News).


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Image Complete Music For Guitar
The wirily coiffured man in his middle years who glares from the cover of this new Brilliant Classics release is Luigi Mozzani. Perhaps he has misgivings about his picture being taken; if so, it does not apparently unsettle his playing. His left-hand position suggests a stretch of unusual breadth: a Rachmaninov of the guitar, perhaps. The expression, without being too fanciful, suggests a man of pride and personal independence, and gives life to a remarkable story. Mozzani was born into grinding poverty in 1869 but as a child gained a basic musical education that enabled him to earn a living in his home-town of Faenza as a clarinettist in the town band. He taught himself the guitar, and more profitably learnt the oboe, which eventually took him across the Atlantic where he became a member of the New York Philharmonic. There too he published a method-book for the guitar which, once he had returned to Europe, made his name in the guitar fraternity. By the turn of the century, as a player, teacher and maker of guitars, Mozzani had found his metier. His output was not large, and focused on education, but full of original lyric inspiration (complemented here by the sole work for guitar of another born Italian melodist, Ottorino Respighi). The studies are as much tone-pictures as they are technical exercises, no less satisfying as a listening than a playing experience. As wider audiences will now appreciate, his works certainly belong to the finest guitar repertoire of the late 1800s: they have never been gathered together on a single CD, and many of the pieces here receive first recordings. For further historical resonance, Giulio Tampalini presents them on a guitar, built by Mozzani, which once belonged to Andres Segovia. Luigi Mozzani (1869-1943) was born into a poor family in Ancona, Italy. At a very young age he learned to play the guitar and the oboe, later he became principal oboist of the New York Philharmonic. However it is the guitar which was his great love. He wrote a “Mozzani” method, which included his technical innovations in Etudes for advanced students. He was also active in the development of the guitar as instrument, and promoted the so-called “lyra-guitar” in the form of a lyre. Mozzani’s music is charming, lyrical and beautifully atmospheric, the works issued in cycles of studies or character pieces. Included as a bonus is the only guitar piece by Ottorino Respighi, a set of variations. Played by one of Italy’s leading guitarists, and “house-guitarist” of Brilliant Classics: Giulio Tampalini, with an impressive discography to his name of works by Tarrega, Llobet, Mirto, Ugoletti a.o. Excellent liner notes in both English and Italian.

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Image Bach Family Organ Music
BACH FAMILY:

Heinrich Bach
Johann Michael Bach
Johann Bernard Bach
Johann Lorenz Bach
Wilhelm Friedemann Bach
Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
Johann Ernst Bach
Johann Christoph Friedrich Bach
Johann Christian Bach
Wilhelm Friedrich Ernst Bach


Sergio Militello, organ

The most famous scion of a musical family which stretched across at least ten generations, Johann Sebastian Bach had a very strong sense of history, tradition, and his evolving place in it, and was instrumental in curating and adding to the library of the music of the Bachs, which was known as the Altbachisches Archiv. This archive mostly comprises vocal music; now the Italian organist has created a fascinating instrumental counterpart, with short organ works by ten members of the family ranging from Heinrich Bach (1615-1692) to Wilhelm Friedemann Ernst Bach (1779-1845). And so, during the course of the disc, we move, always guided by the constraints of Protestant thought and liturgy, through austere low Baroque chorales to spectacular, late-Classical fantasias.

Militello has chosen an organ of ideal size and disposition for this repertoire: a new instrument, built to Baroque specifications within the vestry of the magnificent Lower Austrian Benedictine Abbey of Melk, overlooking the Danube on a rocky outcrop and providing a dramatic backdrop to what is already music of continually shifting rhetoric and invention.


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Image Complete Music for Guitar
Alfonso Baschiera, guitar
Federica Lotti, flute
Nicola Boscaro, cello

Henri Sauguet (1901-1989) was a favourite pupil of Erik Satie and Charles Koechlin. Later he became closely related to the famous Groupe des Six, the composers around Poulenc, Auric and Milhaud. His fame spread, and he was commissioned to write ballets for Diaghilev's Les Ballets Russes and Ida Rubinstein.

Sauguet's style is a reflection of the pluriform development of 20-th century music: impressionism, expressionism, Darmstadt School, all had their influence on him. His "native' language however is one of expressive lyricism, and that warmth of feeling shines through all his works.

This new recording presents Sauguet's complete output for guitar: small scale works written in cycles, miniatures of great beauty, originality and strong contrasting feelings.

A first recording with excellent performances by guitarist Alfonso Baschiera, who is joined by flutist Federica Lotti in the Six Pièces Faciles.

Booklet contains excellent liner notes in English and Italian, written by the artist.


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Image Sicilian Guitar Music
Angelo Marchese, guitar
Gli Archi Ensemble / Winds of Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana

A native of Sicily, the composer Angelo Gilardino has been inspired by the landscape to compose the works on this disc, but as he says, ‘I am not concerned whether my compositions conjure for the listener images of Sicily: I wrote them with Sicilian myths and locations in mind. I don’t know exactly how this came about, and I am not particularly interested in finding out. But I was definitely not thinking consciously about folk music.’ Au pays parfumé is a set of five inventions for guitar and harpsichord (2013), taking its title from the poetry of Baudelaire. The instruments are not timbrally contrasted but woven to create a composite texture of constantly changing hues. Parthenicum and Capriccio Etneo are both solo works dating from 2014, the former an abstractly structured sonata, the latter a more free-form fantasia loosely based on a Classical rondo. The Concertino di Hykkara (2012) is named after a legendary city between Palermo and Partinico. Designed by the architect Daedalus, who immortalised the name of his tragic son Icarus. Thus the concertino aims to celebrate the guitar as a bird in flight and surrounded by a light-filled accompaniment for chamber orchestra. Previous well-received Gilardino albums on Brilliant Classics have featured both solo and orchestral works with the idiomatic musicianship of Angelo Marchese on the composer’s own instrument. When the concertino was originally released in 2014, MusicWeb reported that ‘This is often soloistic, surreal in nature and open in texture. It is never congested… The guitar part is virtuoso but is not called on to produce outlandish effects at odds with the instrument’s nature. This is a treat for adventurous pursuers of the guitar concerto on the look-out for refreshing and distinctive contemporary additions to the repertoire.’

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Image The Two String Quartets
Roffredo Caetani (1871-1961) was born into a noble family in Italy. His godfather was nobody less than Franz Liszt, who first recognized his musical talent, and who entrusted him to the care of his own pupil Sgambati. Caetani’s first string quartet was written when he was eighteen years old, modeled on the middle quartets by Beethoven. Twenty years later he wrote his second string quartet, an homage to his great inspiration Franz List. The work is in one continuous movement using the Hungarian scale, lending a unity to the melodic material. The Alauda Quartet was founded in 2011 by students at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Since then they have performed in such venues as the Purcell Room of the Queen Elisabeth Hall and the church of St. Martin In The Fields.

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Image Canzonette A Tre Voci
The genre “canzonette” is the light version of the madrigal: using only 3 voices it is playful and popular in character, based on secular poems in a strophic form of three or four verses with ritornello. Monteverdi composed his “Canzonette a tre voci” when he was seventeen years old, in order to gain recognition with a wider audience, and they have proven to be a perfect preparation for the more serious and complex works he later embarked upon such as the madrigals and the operas. These delightful works are performed with the right light hearted mood and dramatic impact by Armoniosoincanto, conducted by Franco Radicchia, using a rich continuo ensemble consisting of flutes, viola da braccia, viola da gamba, theorbo, baroque guitar and harpsichord.

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Image 6 Concertos for 2 Harpsichords
Antonio Soler was a scholar, musicologist (he wrote about the history of Spanish music), composer and virtuoso keyboard player. He was in the service of the Spanish Royal family, and personal tutor of the Infante Gabriel de Borbon. Soler wrote a great quantity of solo keyboard sonatas for the use at the Royal court. They are one movement works, much in the style of the sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti (whom he knew personally). The sonatas abound in instrumental virtuosity, daring harmonies and attractive melodies in pre-classical style. Soler wrote the 6 Concertos for 2 Harpsichords for his royal pupil. Judging by the brilliance and vitality of these popular works the composer and his pupil must have hugely enjoyed themselves playing them. These important works are performed here by the harpsichord duo L’entretien dex clavecins, formed by Agustin Alvarez and Eusebio Fernandez-Villacanas, playing magnificent copies, build by Andrea Restelli, of a Taskin and Donzelague harpsichord.

kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Armenian Composers
Mariam Sarkissian, mezzo-soprano
Artur Avanesov, piano

This year's commemoration of the Armenian Genocide has drawn attention to the rich cultural heritage of this "hidden" country, with its unique language, script and folklore.

This new recording presents three Armenian composers of three generations.

The song cycle "Emerald Songs" by Romanos Melikyan is written on words by 8 contemporary Armenian poets, in a spicy Ravelian language inspired by Armenian folk music. Mansuryan is of the same generation and blood group of Schnittke, Gubaidulina, Pärt and Kancheli. Young Avanesov's piano cycle "Feux follets" is in postmodern style, free and associative.

Sung with great intensity and feeling for the idiom by Armenian mezzo soprano Mariam Sarkissian, who recently received an "Orphée d'or" for her CD of vocal works by Tchaikovsky and Cui.


kr 27 (kr 89)
Image Chamber Music For Clarinet
Luigi Magistrelli, clarinet
Italian Classical Consort

The ever-expanding catalogue of Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach on Brilliant Classics (most of it contained in a 30-CD box, 94640), now reaches his music for clarinet, which has received much less attention on record than his orchestral or keyboard works but is no less melodically fertile and formally inventive than his better-known music.

The clarinet was in its infancy when Bach began to write for it, late in life, having left his position in Berlin as court composer to Frederick the Great, and taken over the directorship of the five principal churches in Hamburg after the death of his godfather, Georg Philipp Telemann (who, as ever, got there first when it came to exploring the potential of new instruments, with various works including a lovely and doleful duet-concerto for two clarinets in D minor).

Sometime after his move to Hamburg, Bach created six single movement sonatas for clarinet, bassoon and fortepiano (H516-21, Wq 91/1-6) of which the keyboard parts are recycled from earlier works, as are several other pieces here, including music which he had originally composed for flute, perhaps for Frederick to play. The Quartet in A minor (H537, Wq93), however, certainly dates from early 1788, originally written for flute (or, as here, clarinet), violin and treble and bass keyboard lines: thus a trio in practice.

The two clarinet duets here are the shortest works on the disc, yet not the least affecting, within the harmonically searching idiom, dubbed Empfindsamkeit, of which Bach became the most noted practitioner, exciting the admiration and imitation of Mozart, Beethoven and countless others who came after him.

kr 27 (kr 89)
Image El Cant De La Sibilla, Sacred Music From Medieval
Who were the pilgrims who climbed the treacherously steep mountain to the monastery of Montserrat in northern Spain? And what kind of music would have accompanied their journey? This release imagines Christmas Eve in medieval Catalonia, built around the 'song of the Sibyl'. The tradition of the singing Sibyl was not unique to Montserrat, but it was covertly practiced there long after it had been outlawed by the Council of Trent in 1575. The Sibyl was a pre-Christian woman who prophesied the coming of Christ; during the Middle Ages, a boy would dress up as the Sibyl and, blindfolded, sing the famous verses, normally in the third nocturn of the Christmas Day matins service. This recording uses the Catalan version of the Sibyl's song found in the archives of Barcelona Cathedral. Another Catalan book from the same period, the Llibre Vermell de Montserrat, also informs much of this programme. It would have provided pilgrims with suitably religious music to sing on their approach to the cathedral, rather than secular songs and dances. The additional use of Gregorian chant sets the Cant de la Sibil·la in its original context of the early morning matins, before these were standardised into the Office of Readings. Finally, the addition of a traditional secular Catalan song – which tells the story of the doomed Count Arnau – marks the period in the night when the pious pilgrims, eagerly awaiting the opening of the monastery, would give the floor over to storytellers. This CD is the result of a unique project involving professional and amateur artists. The project was premiered as the first concert of a new annual festival in Florence run by Federico Bardazzi and Alessandra Montali, 'InCanto Armonico'. Established group Ensemble San Felice, who, under Bardazzi's direction, have previously made several successful CDs, were paired with the children's choir of the Cathedral of Sarzana, Pueri Cantores, who make up the 'voci bianche'. Featuring young soprano soloist Chiara Galioto, and performed on period instruments, this recording provides the listener with an enchanting aural portrayal of medieval Catalonia. This fascinating programme attempts to depict an imaginary coming together of pilgrims from various countries on their way to celebrate Christmas Mass at the Catalan monastery of Montserrat, one of the strongest bastions of Christianity in the middle ages. During the Matins on Christmas day a boy dressed up as the Sybil blindfoldedly sang the famous verses from pagan times predicting the coming of Christ and the end of the world (this practice was later forbidden by the Council of Trent). This liturgical drama includes music from the famous Llibre Vermell de Montserrat, Gregorian Chant and the 14th century Barcelona Lectionary. Federico Bardazzi and his vocal and instrumental group use copies of original instruments (based on detailed research). For the vocal parts they use a form of improvisation and ornamentation based on Christian, Arab and Jewish tradition, as was in the culture of the Iberian Peninsula in the middle ages. Recorded in Sarzana, Italy, in April 2016. Contains excellent and scholarly liner notes written by the artists. Sung texts available at our website www.brilliantclassics.com.

kr 27 (kr 89)
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