Music and Book reviews

Browsing: Classical

Arias Music Live
‘Eva’. Recital by Eva Kong, soprano and Alex Raineri, pianist

Artist/s: Eva Kong, soprano and Alex Raineri, pianist
Category: Arias, Art Songs, Classical, Music Live, Opera
Location, Date: Brisbane Music Festival, Saturday August 15, 2020, online from Brisbane.
Reviewed by

“This was an exemplary recital in both the planning and the execution, demonstrating a strong musical collaboration between Alex Raineri and Eva Kong and celebrating their wide musical interests.  A wonderful tribute to the resilience of the performing arts during difficult times.”

Classical Music Recording
1000 Years of Classical Music: Grainger

Artist/s: Australian orchestras, choirs, soloists. 17 orchestral, choral or solo piano works.
Category: Classical
Label: ABC Classics 481 5579, from the series 1000 Years of Classical Music
Reviewed by

A well-chosen selection of works from this multifaceted composer, given performances imbued with a sympathetic understanding. The disc is highly recommended for all lovers of Grainger’s music and to those curious to know more.

Classical Music Recording
126 Variations on Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Composed by Julian Yu

Artist/s: Michael Kieran Harvey, piano
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Move Records MD 3404 [Double CD]
Reviewed by

“Julian Yu’s 126 Variations on Twinkle Twinkle Little Star for piano is a tour de force of compositional craft, brilliantly interpreted by pianist Michael Kieran Harvey.” Julian Yu has already had significant success with his variations on Twinkle Twinkle Little…

Avant Pop Music Recording
A Fog Like Liars’ Loving. Leider ensemble

Artist/s: Leider. Rishin Singh (trombone & music & lyrics), Annie Gårlid (viola & voice), Derek Shirley (cello & percussion) and Stine Sterne (flute & voice)
Category: Avant Pop, Contemporary, New Music
Label: Beacon Sound. LP and digital.
https://beaconsound.bandcamp.com/album/a-fog-like-liars-loving
Reviewed by

It is certainly a very beautiful album, and also very addictive. A Fog Like Liars Loving is a first collection of what I hope will be much more music from Rishin Singh and Leider.

Classical Music Recording
A Little French Cello

Artist/s: Zoe Knighton, cello, Amir Farid, piano
Category: Classical
Label: Move Records MD 3367
www.move.com.au
Reviewed by

This CD was immediately appealing given my love for all things turn of the century (19th to 20th) the wondrous contribution of the French to all aspects of that time’s aesthetic, my relatively nouveau affaire d’amour with the cello and…

Classical Music Recording
A Little Variation: Variation Form as Used by Australian Composers

Artist/s: Jeanell Carrigan, piano. Works by McKay, Webb, Hannan, Polglase, Davidson, Isaacs.
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Australian Music Centre VAST032.2
Reviewed by

Jeanell Carrigan is a passionate pianist. She seems to be able to harness that passion and find works by primarily Australian composers that deserve a thorough, active listening. Without her, a lot of good music would lie mouldering in the…

Arias
A Toast to Melba

Artist/s: Lorina Gore (soprano), Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra conducted by Marko Letonja
Category: Arias, Art Songs, Classical, Opera
Label: ABC 481 6297
Reviewed by

“Lorina Gore’s prodigious vocal gifts are on display throughout, stamping her as a great Australian coloratura of this generation.”

Classical Music Recording
A Winter’s Tale

Artist/s: Roger Benedict (viola), Simon Tedeschi (piano)
Category: Classical
Label: ABC Classics 481 6751
Reviewed by

“Benedict and Tedeschi prove powerful advocates for Schumann’s ‘fantastick’ style but Schubert gets lost in translation.”

Classical Music Recording
Addicted to Bass. Seven Premiere Australian works for Bass Recorder

Artist/s: Alicia Crossley, with Joshua Hill, Anna Fraser, Vatche Jambazian, Victoria Jacono, Ben Carey
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Self-release
www.aliciacrossley.com.au www.soundcloud.com.au/alicia-crossley
Reviewed by

Ken Tribe used to speak of the “bootstraps principle”. He was a member of the first Music Board of the Australia Council in the early 1970s when it was developing policies for performance grants; his notion was that aspiring musicians…

Classical Music Recording
Adès: Polaris – Voyage for Orchestra. Stanhope: Piccolo Concerto

Artist/s: Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Markus Stenz, Benjamin Northey, conductors. Andrew Macleod, piccolo
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: ABC Classics 481 0862
Reviewed by

Once upon a time British music was seen by an aspiring Australian avant-garde as incorrigibly conservative. A semi-mythical figure, the English organist-composer, minted by one or other Oxbridge college, would descend on Australia and, taking up an academic or other…

Arias Music Recording
Agony and Ecstasy

Artist/s: Emma Matthews (soprano), Melbourne Symphony Orchestra cond. Andrea Molino
Category: Arias, Classical, Music Recording, Opera
Label: ABC Classics 481 4236
www.abcclassics.com
Reviewed by

“This splendid recording of bel canto operatic arias, performed by the leading Australian soprano, Emma Matthews, represents the span of her career to date. It is a treasure trove: jaw-dropping coloratura and glorious tone from Matthews and wonderfully sympathetic playing by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra under the baton of maestro Andrea Molino.”

Classical Music Recording
Agony and Ecstasy: Australian Music from the Time of Arthur Boyd

Artist/s: Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, South Australian Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, West Australian Symphony Orchestra, various conductors
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: ABC Classics 481 1210
Reviewed by

What with the perils of internet piracy, the impending death of classical music and the end of the civilisation as we know it, the recording business faces one or two challenges. These are met with various strategies, ranging from the…

Classical Music Recording
Aida : Verdi. Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

Artist/s: Latonia Moore (Aida), Walter Fraccaro (Radamès), Milijana Nikolic (Amneris), Michael Honeyman (Amonasro), David Parkin (Ramfis), Dubinsky (The King Gennadi), Eva Kong (High priestess), Benjamin Rasheed (Messenger) Opera Australia Chorus, Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra Brian Castles-Onion (conductor), Gale Edwards (director), Opera Australia (production)
Category: Classical, Opera
Reviewed by

“The main attraction of this Aida by Opera Australia lies in the splendid singing of the two female leads, rather than in any compelling staging or novel conception of this magnificent late opera of Verdi. Latonia Moore has the perfect voice for Aida, and the role of Amneris, sung by Milijana Nikolic, is also wonderfully realised.”

Classical Music Recording
All The Stops: The David Drury Collection.

Artist/s: David Drury (organ), Sydney Town Hall Organ, St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne organ.
Category: Classical
Label: 3CD & Digital Album .ABC 481 8202, digital ABC 4818202)
Reviewed by

“Prayers are answered: Drury’s summa of organ playing from the mid-nineteenth to the late-twentienth centuries is crowned by works by Liszt, Reger and Jackson.”

Classical Music Recording
Andrew Anderson: Piano Quartets 1 & 2. Australia Piano Quartet 

Artist/s: Australia Piano Quartet - Kristian Winther (violin), James Wannan (viola), Thomas Rann (cello),  Daniel de Borah (piano) 
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Navona Records NV6235
https://www.navonarecords.com/catalog/nv6235/
Reviewed by

A superb recording of works by a composer that deserves to be better known, and an ensemble deserving of greater profile.

Classical Music Recording
Andrew Batterham – Trumpet Concerto. David Elton and Sydney String Virtuosi

Artist/s: David Elton (trumpet) and Sydney String Virtuosi conducted by Umberto Clerici 
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Digital EP ABC Classic | ABC 0028948556939. Commissioned by the ABC
Reviewed by

“With this composition David Batterham has successfully balanced striking melodic invention with the stark virtuosity of David Elton’s outstanding trumpet playing to extend the possibilities of the instrument within the concerto form.”

Classical Music Recording
Andrew Schultz Piano Music

Artist/s: Antony Gray (piano)
Category: Classical, New Music
Label: Wirripang Wirr 078 (2016)
Reviewed by

“Andrew Schultz’s impressive piano music collection is deeply rooted in the unique resonant qualities of the instrument. His long-time collaborator, Antony Gray, interprets the works with both sensitivity and panache.”

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