Friday, January 15, 2016

Louise Farrenc - Violin Sonata No. 2; Cello Sonata (Nancy Oliveros; Kirsten Whitson; Mary Ellen Haupert) mp3


Information

Composer: Louise Farrenc
  1. Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major, Op. 39: I. Allegro grazioso
  2. Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major, Op. 39: II. Scherzo: Allegro
  3. Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major, Op. 39: III. Adagio
  4. Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major, Op. 39: IV. Finale: Allegro
  5. Cello Sonata in B major, Op. 46: I. Allegro moderato
  6. Cello Sonata in B major, Op. 46: II. Andante sostenuto
  7. Cello Sonata in B major, Op. 46: III. Finale: Allegro

Nancy Oliveros, violin
Kirsten Whitson, cello
Mary Ellen Haupert, piano
Date: 2012
Label: Centaur

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Monday, January 4, 2016

Miklós Rózsa - Orchestral Works Vol. 1 (Rumon Gamba)


Information

Composer: Miklós Rózsa
  1. Overture to a Symphony Concert, Op. 26a
  2. Three Hungarian Sketches, Op. 14: I. Capriccio. Allegro capriccioso
  3. Three Hungarian Sketches, Op. 14: II. Pastorale. Andante semplice e pastorale
  4. Three Hungarian Sketches, Op. 14: III. Danza. Allegro giocoso
  5. Tripartita, Op. 33: I. Intrada. Con moto
  6. Tripartita, Op. 33: II. Intermezzo arioso. Lento
  7. Tripartita, Op. 33: III. Finale. Allegro con brio
  8. Hungarian Serenade, Op. 25: I. Marcia. Tempo di marcia
  9. Hungarian Serenade, Op. 25: II. Serenata. Andante con moto e semplice
  10. Hungarian Serenade, Op. 25: III. Scherzo. Allegretto scherzando
  11. Hungarian Serenade, Op. 25: IV. Notturno. Lento con espressione
  12. Hungarian Serenade, Op. 25: V. Danza. Vivace e molto giusto

BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Rumon Gamba, conductor
Date: 2008
Label: Chandos
http://chandos.net/details06.asp?CNumber=CHAN%2010488

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Review

Rózsa’s exuberant off-screen music played with gusto by the BBC Phil

Rózsa’s list of concert works (those bearing opus numbers) amounts to under half his 95 film scores. Although Rózsa maintained a divide between his two compositional careers, Andrew Knowles’s assertion in the booklet that the composer “never incorporated music from his film scores into his concert works” needs qualification in light of the Spellbound Concerto’s popularity, even if this was never dignified with an opus number. And, of course, he reworked his Violin Concerto as the music to The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes (Tadlow, 7/07).

None of the four works here has connections with the cinema although Rózsa’s Kodály-esque concert platform and silver-screen styles did not differ much. The earliest item is the Three Hungarian Sketches, a vibrant Capriccio, Pastorale and Danza which constituted the official Hungarian entry for the 1938 ISCM Festival. A major offering, it is more substantial than the slightly longer Hungarian Serenade, a post-war reworking of the Op 10 Serenade and some early piano pieces, which is essentially superior light music.

Rózsa’s Hungarian roots, which never dimmed during his long exile, were rarely expressed with as much pathos as in the Overture to a Symphony Concert, conceived during the hopeful days of the abortive 1956 Hungarian revolution. Revised in 1963, this is a bright and positive score which would grace any concert programme. Most impressive of all is the Tripartita (1971, rev 1972), its constituent Intrada, Intermezzo and rather Waltonian Finale showing Rózsa developing in a new direction late in his career. Excellent performances and superlative sound make this a most enjoyable overture to what should prove a most worthwhile enterprise.

-- Guy Rickards, Gramophone

More reviews:
http://www.classicstoday.com/review/review-14792/
http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2009/Apr09/Rozsa_CHAN10488.htm
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mikl%C3%B3s-R%C3%B3zsa-Orchestral-Works-Vol/dp/B001FENY7G

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Miklós Rózsa (18 April 1907 – 27 July 1995) was a Hungarian composer. Best known for his nearly one hundred film scores, he nevertheless maintained a steadfast allegiance to absolute concert music throughout what he called his "double life". His notable Hollywood career earned him considerable fame, including Academy Awards for Spellbound (1945), A Double Life (1947), and Ben-Hur (1959), while his concert works were championed by such major artists as Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorsky, and János Starker.

***

Rumon Gamba (born 24 November 1972), is an English conductor. He studied conducting with Colin Metters, George Hurst and Sir Colin Davis at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Gamba was Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra from 2002 to 2010. He is currently chief conductor and music director of NorrlandsOperan and the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra.

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Miklós Rózsa - Orchestral Works Vol. 3 (Jennifer Pike; Rumon Gamba)


Information

Composer: Miklós Rózsa
  • (01-03) Violin Concerto, Op. 24
  • (04-06) Concerto for String Orchestra, Op. 17
  • (07-16) Theme, Variations and Finale, Op. 13

Jennifer Pike, violin (1-3)
BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Rumon Gamba, conductor
Date: 2011-2012
Label: Chandos
http://chandos.net/details06.asp?CNumber=CHAN%2010738

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Review

Pike plays Rózsa in Heifetz’s footsteps

Though Miklós Rózsa had a cosmopolitan career, studying in Leipzig and living in Paris and London before becoming one of the most famous Hollywood movie composers, he never left behind the modal inflections and melodic character of the music of his native Hungary. The pre-war Variations are based on what sounds like a genuine folk melody, announced by a solo oboe. The work is a brilliantly scored orchestral showpiece, forceful, energetic variations alternating with episodes of lyrical expansion. The Concerto for string orchestra of 1943 is an altogether darker, more intense piece – even the folk-style finale has sinister episodes and the stark, declamatory themes of the first movement give it the character of a desperate lament. Whatever Rózsa’s intentions may have been, the music appears like a commemoration of an Eastern European culture in the process of destruction.

The Violin Concerto written for Heifetz has a traditional form and a fine balance of lyrical and virtuoso elements. On this spacious new recording I was particularly impressed by the wide landscapes of the slow movement and the dream-like episode in the middle of the finale. Comparing Jennifer Pike’s performance with the original Heifetz recording, hers appears cooler and more contemplative. Though she plays the brilliant passages extremely well, she lacks something of Heifetz’s manic energy and his ability to make of each movement a single passionate utterance. There’s much to be said for this calmer performance, highlighting the beauty of Rózsa’s intricate interplay between violin and orchestra.

-- DuncanDruce, Gramophone

More reviews:
http://www.classical-music.com/review/r%C3%B3zsa-orchestral-works-vol-3
http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2013/Jan13/Rozsa_orchestral_v3_CHAN10738.htm
http://audaud.com/2013/01/miklos-rozsa-violin-concerto-concerto-for-string-orchestra-theme-variations-and-finale-jennifer-pike-violin-bbc-philharmonic-rumon-gamba-chandos/

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Miklós Rózsa (18 April 1907 – 27 July 1995) was a Hungarian composer. Best known for his nearly one hundred film scores, he nevertheless maintained a steadfast allegiance to absolute concert music throughout what he called his "double life". His notable Hollywood career earned him considerable fame, including Academy Awards for Spellbound (1945), A Double Life (1947), and Ben-Hur (1959), while his concert works were championed by such major artists as Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorsky, and János Starker.

***

Rumon Gamba (born 24 November 1972), is an English conductor. He studied conducting with Colin Metters, George Hurst and Sir Colin Davis at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Gamba was Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra from 2002 to 2010. He is currently chief conductor and music director of NorrlandsOperan and the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra.

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Miklós Rózsa - Orchestral Works Vol. 2 (Paul Watkins; Jennifer Pike; Rumon Gamba)


Information

Composer: Miklós Rózsa
  1. Variations on a Hungarian Peasant Song, for violin & orchestra, Op. 4
  2. The Vintner's Daughter - Variations on a French Folk Song, Op. 23a
  3. Notturno Ungherese, Op. 28
  4. Cello Concerto, Op. 32: I. Moderato - Allegro non troppo
  5. Cello Concerto, Op. 32: II. Lento con grande espressione
  6. Cello Concerto, Op. 32: III. Allegro vivo

Jennifer Pike, violin (1)
Paul Watkins, cello (4-6)
BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Rumon Gamba, conductor
Date: 2009 (1-3), 2010 (4-6)
Label: Chandos
https://www.chandos.net/details06.asp?CNumber=CHAN%2010674

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Review

Miklós Rózsa, born in Budapest, was one of the most gifted of all the composers who moved from his homeland to Hollywood to write music for films (95 of them!). He was a natural melodist and scored for orchestra with great flair, and the Hungarian flavour of his music gave it a special edge and character.

Rózsa was especially impressive in variations, as the diverse and colourful Variations on a Hungarian Peasant Song demonstrates. It features a concertante solo violin – the seductive Jennifer Pike, who is equally impressive in both the virtuosity and sweet lyricism of her solo role. The Vintner’s Daughter (12 variations on a French folksong) was originally written for solo piano and it was Eugene Ormandy who commissioned the orchestral version, with its imaginative and highly contrasted instrumental colouring and tempi. The Notturno ungherese again features a gentle solo clarinet at its opening but, spiced with a pair of passionate climaxes, it is a truly volatile Hungarian rhapsody.

The disquieting Cello Concerto was inspired by the composer’s meeting with his compatriot, János Starker, who aided its composition. The work is comparatively austere but emotionally gripping. The first movement demands (and receives) passionate virtuosity; the darkly coloured central Lento broods intensely and hauntingly; the dancing, moto perpetuo finale is dissonantly aggressive, with frenzied writing for soloist and orchestra alike, framing a hauntingly mysterious yet tranquil centrepiece. These are four first-rate works by a still neglected composer, marvellously played and recorded.

-- Ivan March, Gramophone

More reviews:
http://www.classical-music.com/review/r%C3%B3zsa-orchestral-works-vol-2
http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2011/Sept11/Rosza_cello_concerto_chan10674.htm
http://www.allmusic.com/album/mikl%C3%B3s-r%C3%B3zsa-variations-on-a-hungarian-peasant-song-the-vintners-daughter-notturno-ungharese-cello-concerto-mw0002164885

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Miklós Rózsa (18 April 1907 – 27 July 1995) was a Hungarian composer. Best known for his nearly one hundred film scores, he nevertheless maintained a steadfast allegiance to absolute concert music throughout what he called his "double life". His notable Hollywood career earned him considerable fame, including Academy Awards for Spellbound (1945), A Double Life (1947), and Ben-Hur (1959), while his concert works were championed by such major artists as Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorsky, and János Starker.

***

Rumon Gamba (born 24 November 1972), is an English conductor. He studied conducting with Colin Metters, George Hurst and Sir Colin Davis at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Gamba was Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra from 2002 to 2010. He is currently chief conductor and music director of NorrlandsOperan and the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra.

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