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The first instalment in our brief survey of music from the Nordic countries – Finland, Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden [FINDS] – featured composers from Iceland and Sweden. This edition showcases music by a selection of Danish composers, whom we’ll introduce in broadly chronological order. Friedrich Kuhlau © HNH International We start with Friedri…
 
This podcast from the Sounds Interesting series spotlights music expressed through the prism of madness in a range of contexts, from the world of fantasy to the theatre of war. Links to the music featured in this podcast: Peter Maxwell Davies: 8 Songs for a Mad King (8.558191-92) William Bolcom: The crazy woman (8.559249) Gaetano Donizetti: Lucia d…
 
This podcast features Peter Hall in conversation with JoAnn Falletta, music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic, about her latest release on the Naxos label—a recording of William Walton’s Façades 1 and 2, together with four additional movements. The conversation takes us from Walton’s university days to his association with the poet Edith Sitwell…
 
This podcast from the Sounds Interesting series examines how a musical composition can be pampered by alternative wardrobes, when an original is dressed in different presentations of style and instrumentation while retaining its core character. Links to the music featured in this podcast: Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 1 in G minor, arr. Schoenberg (8.5…
 
Raymond Bisha introduces us to the eclectic and exuberant imagination of the American composer Aaron Jay Kernis, whose works are inhabited by a host of influences — musical, historical and personal. This disc of three of his diverse compositions features deliciously titled works in delectable performances. (This podcast was first published on 4 Apr…
 
Raymond Bisha’s podcast focuses on two works by William Bolcom recorded for the Naxos American Classics Series. The emotional spectrum of his Canciones de Lorca and Prometheus is reflected in colourful orchestrations and a mix of musical styles that swing between intense drama and surreal humour. (This podcast was first published on 20 November 201…
 
Raymond Bisha dips into a Naxos recording of works by Jean Sibelius that have been obscured by the popularity of his symphonies and the violin concerto, including many pieces he wrote to complement stage works. Although these might be termed incidental and occasional, they belie such labels by constituting an extraordinary treasure house of the mos…
 
Once in a while you hear such incredibly beautiful music for the first time that you just can’t understand why it has remained under wraps for so long. The Violin Concertos Nos. 1 and 2 by the Italian-born composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco are a case in point. Originally championed in the 1920s and 30s by no less an artist that Jascha Heifetz, the…
 
Fantasy, fairy tales and Maurice Ravel’s flair for orchestral colour are all to the fore in this album featuring two examples of the composer’s music for the stage — the scores for his opera L’Enfant et les sortilèges and his ballet Ma mère l’Oye. This highly imaginative music, projected through a childlike lens, is instantly attractive to both the…
 
This podcast from the Naxos Sounds Interesting series focuses on a selection of concertos written not for household-name soloists, but for the collective virtuosity of an orchestra’s serried ranks. Links to the music featured in this podcast: Bartók, Concerto for Orchestra (8.571201) Malipiero, Concerto for Orchestra (8.573291) Joan Tower, Concerto…
 
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