Schumann: Kinderszenen (Scenes from Childhood), Op 15 (adapted by Chris Coletti & Brandon Ridenour) (18:17)
Specially arranged for the Canadian Brass by members Chris Coletti and Brandon Ridenour, Schumann’s monumental keyboard works are given breathtaking performances. “These arrangements preserve the musical heart of the work – not just the melodies, rhythms and harmonies, but character and mood – while adding colors that the piano, even in the hands of the greatest virtuoso, can only hint at.” — Chuck Daellenbach, founding member of the Canadian Brass
Bach/Liszt: Prelude & Fugue in A minor, BWV 543 (9:45)
Simon Trpčeski, piano
Praised by the Los Angeles Times for his grace, eloquence and the “understated beauty of his tone,” Macedonian pianist Simon Trpčeski rose to fame after winning the London International Piano Competition in 2001. A regular concerto soloist with many of the world’s leading orchestras, he also enjoys a busy international career as a chamber musician, and his solo recordings have received recognition as ‘Editor’s Choice’ and ‘Debut Album’ awards from Gramophone.
Monteverdi: L’Orfeo: Prologue; Act I (20:11)
Faye Newton, soprano (Euridice); Charles Daniels, tenor (Orfeo); Taverner Consort & Players / Andrew Parrott
Andrew Parrott and the Taverner Consort & Players celebrate their 40th anniversary with a magnificent recording of the world’s first operatic masterpiece, Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo. Parrott has been at the center of the early music scene for over four decades, and his meticulous research results in a performance and stylistic approach that brings a fresh perspective to the opera. His scholarship, combined with the collaborative nature of the Taverners, translates into a performance brought to life by the finest singers and instrumentalists in the early music world, including tenor Charles Daniels who is Orfeo.
Riisager: Primavera, Concert Overture, Op 31 (5:43)
Aarhus Symphony Orchestra / Bo Holten
“You never know where you have Riisager: he is the man of surprises and caprices,” wrote a Danish newspaper after the first performance of Knudåge Riisager’s Symphony No. 3 in 1932. This album presents a collection of highly original and imaginative orchestral works by Riisager from the 1920s and 30s, all in world premiere recordings by the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra and conductor Bo Holten.
Ben-Haim: Piano Quartet in C minor, Op 4 (29:19)
This is Volume 1 in a new chamber series which explores the music of composers who were forced to flee Europe during the 1930s. The survey begins with works by the German-born Jewish composer Paul Ben-Haim, who immigrated to Palestine in October 1933. Ben-Haim was an accomplished pianist, conductor, choral coach and composer who made a significant cultural contribution to his adoptive country. The list of musicians who commissioned, performed and recorded his music includes Yehudi Menuhin, Itzhak Perlman, Menahem Pressler and Leonard Bernstein.
Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue (18:28)
Orion Weiss, piano; Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra / JoAnn Falletta
George Gershwin fired up the New York music scene with his style combining alluring tunes with the beat of blues and ragtime. His Strike up the Band Overture opened a flashy Broadway hit, and he regarded his masterpiece Rhapsody in Blue as a “musical kaleidoscope of America.” Promenade was reconstructed from a 1937 film score, and Catfish Row was Gershwin’s concert suite from the opera Porgy and Bess.
Ramírez: Misa Criolla (18:45)
Seraphic Fire / Patrick Dupré Quigley; Alvaro Bermudez, guitar & charango; Pedro Fernandez, percussion
Seraphic Fire has assembled a collection of music with which the Miami-based group has a visceral, tenacious connection. This self-titled recording contains signature works that have brought the ensemble to prominence eleven seasons after its founding. Led by Artistic Director Patrick Dupré Quigley, Seraphic Fire brings the best ensemble singers from around the country to perform repertoire ranging from Gregorian chant to newly commissioned works.
Tchaikovsky: String Sextet in D minor, Op 70, Souvenir de Florence (34:28)
Emerson String Quartet; Paul Neubauer, viola; Colin Carr, cello
For their new album, the Emerson String Quartet performs two string sextets from the 1890′s, Souvenir de Florence by Tchaikovsky and Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night) by Arnold Schoenberg. This is the quartet’s first recording of music by Tchaikovsky since the 1980′s and its first ever recording of a piece by Schoenberg. They are joined on both works by two frequent collaborators, American violinist Paul Neubauer and British cellist Colin Carr.
Casella: Italia, Op 11 (19:39)
BBC Philharmonic / Gianandrea Noseda
This is the third volume in Chandos’ survey of orchestral works by Alfredo Casella, which forms part of the ongoing Italian Music series with the BBC Philharmonic and Gianandrea Noseda. Casella was a fervent Italian patriot, as his Symphonic Rhapsody Italia so aptly demonstrates. In this one-movement work, the composer focuses on just two contrasting destinations in Italy: Sicily – impoverished, sun scorched, and superstitious – and Naples – bustling and carefree.
Romberg: Eärendil, the Mariner (7:09)
Debussy: Poissons d’or (4:06)
Alexandra Silocea, piano
Alexandra Silocea made a big impression with her debut Avie recording featuring the Piano Sonatas by Prokofiev, which “I don’t recall having heard being played better by anyone,” according to International Record Review. For her follow-up, she immerses herself in the water-like sonorities of some of the great pianistic composers of the 19th and 20th centuries. She also adds a distinctive stamp with a commission by young Norwegian composer Martin Romberg.