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EMI Classics & Virgin Classics April releases

New releases from EMI Classics this month include a remarkable recital by Yundi, one of today’s brightest keyboard stars.  Recorded in China’s extraordinary new National Centre for the Performing Arts, Live in Beijing features the young Chinese pianist in an all-Chopin recital – with a traditional Chinese encore – captured in a combination CD/DVD release.  This month, the label also releases Antonio Pappano’s new recording with Rome’s Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia of Rachmaninoff’s soaring and intensely Romantic Symphony No. 2, paired with Liadov’s The Enchanted Lake, as well a number of new releases in its Home of Opera series – including such classics as Sir Thomas Beecham conducting Bizet’s Carmen with Victoria de los Angeles in the title role, and Carlo Maria Giulini conducting Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri.  From EMI’s sister label, Virgin Classics, comes Norwegian cellist Truls Mork in three cello concertos by C.P.E. Bach, of whom Mozart once declared: “He is the father, we are the children.”
Live in Beijing
Yundi, piano
CD/DVD and downloads available April 5 from EMI Classics
Live in Beijing captures the full live experience from Yundi’s June 2010 concert in China’s extraordinary new National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing.  Yundi, known to many as the “Prince of the Piano,” has been famed throughout his homeland since taking first prize at Warsaw’s Chopin Competition in 2000, when he became the first Chinese pianist ever to win the competition, as well as the youngest winner in its history.
In this thrilling CD/DVD release, Yundi gives a live recital of works by Chopin, including his great Sonata No. 2.  Yundi’s encores also include one of the Chinese works that have proved so popular in his recitals around the world.  The recording not only captures the energy and thrill of the very special live performance, but also illustrates why so many people consider Yundi an icon and a superstar.
Track lists for both the CD and DVD follow.
CD track list:
1-2. Chopin: Andante spianato and grande polonaise brillante in E-flat, Op. 22
3-6. Chopin: Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35 “Marche funèbre”
7.    Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 1 in G-sharp minor
8.    Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 2 in D
9.    Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 3 in C
10.  Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 4 in B minor
11.  Chopin: Nocturne No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 9, No. 1
12.  Chopin: Nocturne No. 2 in E-flat, Op. 9, No. 2
13.  Chopin: Nocturne No. 5 in F-sharp, Op. 15, No. 2
14.  Chopin: Polonaise No. 6 in A-flat, Op. 53 “Héroïque”
15.  Traditional Chinese: Cai Yun Zhui Yue
16.  Chopin: Etude in C minor, Op. 10, No. 12, “Revolutionary”
DVD track list:
1.    Chopin: Nocturne No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 9, No. 1
2.    Chopin: Nocturne No. 2 in E-flat, Op. 9, No. 2
3.    Chopin: Nocturne No. 5 in F-sharp, Op. 15, No. 2
4.    Chopin: Nocturne No. 8 in D-flat, Op. 27, No. 2
5.    Chopin: Nocturne No. 13 in C minor, Op. 48, No. 1
6-7. Chopin: Andante spianato and grande polonaise brillante in E-flat, Op. 22
8.    Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 1 in G-sharp minor
8.    Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 2 in D
10.  Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 3 in C
11.  Chopin: Four Mazurkas, Op. 33: No. 4 in B minor
12-15. Chopin: Piano Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 35 “Marche funèbre”
16.  Chopin: Polonaise No. 6 in A-flat, Op. 53 “Héroïque”
17.  Traditional Chinese: Cai Yun Zhui Yue
18.  Chopin: Etude in C minor, Op. 10, No. 12, “Revolutionary”
Rachmaninoff: Symphony No. 2; Liadov: The Enchanted Lake
Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia / Antonio Pappano
CD and downloads available April 5 from EMI Classics
Antonio Pappano adds another new recording to his growing discography with Rome’s Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia: an all-Russian album featuring Rachmaninoff’s sweepingly romantic Symphony No. 2, and Liadov’s The Enchanted Lake.  Rachmaninoff’s Second is one of the Russian composer’s best-known works, boasting soaring, long-spun melodies and plenty of adrenalin-fuelled action, particularly in the climactic finale.  The Enchanted Lake is a beautiful and evocative tone poem that deserves to be better known.  Both works receive arresting and characteristically passionate performances from Pappano and the ensemble.
Pappano and his Santa Cecilia orchestra recorded other great Russian orchestral works, including Tchaikovsky’s last three symphonies – musical forbears to Rachmaninoff’s essays in the genre – to high critical praise.  MusicWeb International named their recording of Tchaikovsky’s Symphonies Nos. 4-6 its “Recording of the Month,” explaining, “These discs are a real ‘concert in your pocket’ and, having had them in mine for some weeks now, I can say that they are recordings which will grow on you, rewarding solitary listening sessions with genuinely satisfying and often deeply moving moments.”
More recently Pappano and the orchestra released a recording of Rossini’s Stabat Mater that was rapturously received.  The Financial Times observed, “What ultimately defines the performance is its polish and stylishness, giving the Stabat Mater a stature it has seldom, if ever, achieved on record.”  For the Associated Press, Verena Dobnik called it “the finest recording of the work since a 1971 one with Luciano Pavarotti,” before noting: “Pappano’s free-breathing baton draws intense whispers as well as rousing explosions to paint in sound what he calls ‘the desperation and the drama’ of Mary under the cross.”  The UK’s Independent enthused, “Antonio Pappano’s winning streak continues with Rossini’s Stabat Mater, a companion piece to last year’s Verdi Messa da Requiem [also from these forces] in its almost operatic treatment of devotional material.”
The new recording marks Pappano and Santa Cecilia’s first orchestral recording since their 2007 release of Respighi’s Roman Trilogy.  The All Music Guide gave that recording high marks, praising “the propulsive energy and bone-deep understanding they bring to the music.”
C.P.E. Bach: Cello Concertos
Truls Mork, cello
Les Violons du Roy / Bernard Labadie
CD and downloads available April 5 from Virgin Classics
Cellist Truls Mork once again demonstrates his profound sensitivity to musical style as he and Les Violons du Roy, under the direction of Bernard Labadie, collaborate on a new recording of three cello concertos by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, the third son of Johann Sebastian Bach.
The “empfindsamer Stil,” or “sensitive style,” in 18th-century music was exemplified by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (1714-88).  Mozart venerated C.P.E. Bach’s music, proclaiming: “He is the father, we are the children.”  C.P.E. Bach’s musical expressivity and innovative approach to form exercised an important influence on both Haydn and Beethoven.
Mork, like the Quebec-based ensemble Les Violons du Roy with Labadie, combines an acute awareness of 18th-century performance practice with mastery of an instrument configured for the demands of modern music making.  These are performances that embody “the best of both worlds,” as do Mork’s recordings of J.S. Bach’s Six Suites for Unaccompanied Cello, released in 2005.  Gramophone called that recording an “impressive set,” commenting:
“Truls Mork confidently embraces most of the essentials of 18th-century performance – clear tone and articulation, careful delineation of rhythmic structure,…and the use of phrasing and dynamic shading to present the character of each piece… .  The style of each piece releases a creative spirit allowing him to play freely and flexibly while keeping the structure clear… .  These are commanding performances, inspired by the composer’s own unquenchable spirit.”
Truls Mork’s versatility is everywhere apparent in his wide-ranging Virgin Classics catalog, encompassing music from J.S. Bach to Dutilleux, by way of Haydn, Schubert, Schumann, Dvorák, Tchaikovsky, Grieg, Rachmaninoff, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, and Britten.
Special compilations, boxed sets, and reissues
A Portrait in Music
Dirk Brossé
Six-CD boxed set and downloads available March 29 from EMI Classics
“Music is an all-encompassing vital need to me.” – Dirk Brossé
EMI Classics celebrates the 50th birthday of Flemish-Belgian composer and conductor Dirk Brossé, who recently began his tenure as Music Director of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, with a comprehensive six-CD boxed set.  The collection gives a full and illuminating picture of Brossé’s achievements, demonstrating that although his work is eclectic, it is possible to trace the evolution of his style.
The selection of orchestral works on the first CD reveals Brossé’s imaginative power and strong social commitment.  Featured works include the scintillating Millennium Overture and his first symphony, Artesia.  As the second CD, “Concerto,” shows, Brossé is a master not only of orchestration but also of writing melody for solo instruments.  Ethnic music is a particular passion of his, and the third CD showcases his keen interest in other musical cultures, through works such as his second symphony, The Birth of Music, from 1997.  The fourth disc features Brossé’s exploration of the art of the musical, including his first essay in the genre, Sacco & Vanzetti, which premiered in October 1996.  His first love, however, was film music, and Disc Five contains many of his film scores, including Boerenpsalm from 1989 by director Roland Verhavert and Brod Ludaka by Matthias Lebeer.  The sixth CD, “A la Carte,” contains a widely varied selection from Brossé’s vast oeuvre, starring some of his favorite performers.
EMI Classics – The Home of Opera series
13 new titles
CD multipacks and downloads available April 5 from EMI Classics
With an unrivaled catalog of over 450 complete opera recordings produced over the last 60 years – and an illustrious succession of artists that today includes such names as Angela Gheorghiu, Natalie Dessay, Joyce DiDonato, Roberto Alagna, Antonio Pappano, and Riccardo Muti – EMI Classics, with its sister label Virgin Classics, can rightly claim to be the “home of opera.”
This month, 13 timeless operas further expand the label’s Home of Opera series.  New releases include classic performances of such favorites as Bizet’s Carmen, Mozart’s Così fan tutte, and Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore.  Among the 60 opera releases already available – essential sets produced since 1953 by EMI Classics and Virgin Classics – are such all-time great recordings as Maria Callas in her first Tosca, Plácido Domingo in Tristan und Isolde under Antonio Pappano, Lucie de Lammermoor starring Natalie Dessay and Roberto Alagna, and Der Rosenkavalier starring Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and conducted by Herbert von Karajan.
Each CD multipack contains a 16-page booklet with introductions in English, German, French, and Spanish and a bonus disc containing synopsis and libretto with translations.
A list of this month’s releases follows.
Visit this link for additional information:
Bizet: Carmen
Sir Thomas Beecham; Victoria de los Angeles; Nicolai Gedda; Janine Micheau; Ernest Blanc
Mozart: Così fan tutte
Herbert von Karajan; Elisabeth Schwarzkopf; Nan Merriman; Lisa Otto; Léopold Simoneau; Rolando Panerai; Sesto Bruscantini
Weber: Der Freischütz
Joseph Keilberth; Elisabeth Grümmer; Rudolf Schock; Gottlob Frick; Lisa Otto
Verdi: Falstaff
Herbert von Karajan; Tito Gobbi; Elisabeth Schwarzkopf; Anna Moffo; Luigi Alva; Rolando Panerai
Beethoven: Fidelio
Herbert von Karajan; Helga Dernesch; Jon Vickers; Zoltán Kélémen; Karl Ridderbusch
Mozart: Idomeneo
Sir Charles Mackerras; Ian Bostridge; Lorraine Hunt Lieberson; Lisa Milne; Barbara Frittoli; Anthony Rolfe Johnson
Verdi: La forza del destino
Tullio Serafin; Maria Callas; Richard Tucker; Carlo Tagliabue; Nicola Rossi-Lemeni
Donizetti: L’elisir d’amore
Francesco Molinari Pradelli; Mirella Freni; Nicolai Gedda; Mario Sereni; Renato Capecchi
Rossini: L’italiana in Algeri
Carlo Maria Giulini; Graziella Sciutti; Giulietta Simionato; Cesare Valletti; Mario Petri
Monteverdi: L’Orfeo
Emmanuelle Haïm; Ian Bostridge; Patrizia Ciofi; Alice Coote; Natalie Dessay; Véronique Gens
Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice
Riccardo Muti; Agnes Baltsa; Margaret Marshall; Edita Gruberova
Offenbach: Orphée aux Enfers
Marc Minkowski; Natalie Dessay; Laurent Naouri; Véronique Gens; Ewa Podleś
Wagner: Parsifal
Reginald Goodall; Donald McIntyre; Waltraud Meier; Warren Ellsworth; Phillip Joll
OPERA 2011
Various Artists
Two-CD set and downloads available April 5 from EMI Classics
Following the enormous success of the album OPERA 2010, EMI Classics is pleased to release OPERA 2011.  With 40 tracks, and over two-and-a-half hours of operatic arias and duets, this double album features the best and most popular names in opera from the catalogs of both Virgin Classics and EMI Classics.
This set presents current stars and superstars, as well as some of the greatest singers of the past.  Featured artists include Natalie Dessay, Barbara Hendricks, Plácido Domingo, Joyce DiDonato, Philippe Jaroussky, Diana Damrau, and Kate Royal, as well as legends such as Teresa Berganza, Franco Corelli, and Maria Callas.
Track list
CD One
1.   ROSSINI: “Contro un cor” from Il barbiere di Siviglia (Joyce DiDonato)
2.   CALDARA: “Lo seguitai felice” from L’Olimpiade (Philippe Jaroussky)
3.   ARNE: “Rise, Glory, rise” from Rosamond (Ian Bostridge; Mark Bennett, trumpet)
4.   ROSSINI: “Inflammatus et accensus” from Stabat Mater (Anna Netrebko)
5.   PUCCINI: “Recondita armonia” from Tosca (Plácido Domingo)
6.   HANDEL: “Se pietà di me non senti” from Giulio Cesare in Egitto (Natalie Dessay)
7.   MASCAGNI: “Ed anche Beppe amo” from L’amico Fritz (Luciano Pavarotti)
8.   MOZART: “Der Hölle Rache” from Die Zauberflöte (Diana Damrau)
9.   WAGNER: “Winterstürme wichen dem Wonnemond” from Die Walküre (Simon O’Neill)
10. MOZART: “Voi, che sapete” from Le nozze di Figaro (Teresa Berganza)
11. LEONCAVALLO: “Recitar!…Vesti la giubba” from Pagliacci (José Carreras)
12. DVORÁK: “Song to the Moon” from Rusalka (Kate Royal)
13. VIVALDI: “Non fia della vittoria” from Ercole sul’Termodonte (Rolando Villazón)
14. PUCCINI: “O mio babbino caro” from Gianni Schicchi (Maria Callas)
15. GERSHWIN: “Bess, you is my woman now” from Porgy and Bess (Bryn Terfel; Lesley Garrett)
16. PURCELL: “When I am laid in earth” from Dido and Aeneas (Susan Graham)
17. PUCCINI: “Nessun dorma” from Turandot (Franco Corelli)
CD Two
1.   VIVALDI: “Certo pensier ch’ho in petto” from Ercole sul’Termodonte (Diana Damrau)
2.   HANDEL: “D’un barbaro scortese” from Poro (Ian Bostridge)
3.   VIVALDI: “Non saria pena la mia” from Ercole sul’Termodonte (Joyce DiDonato)
4.   WAGNER: “Nur eine Waffe taugt!” from Parsifal (Simon O’Neill)
5.   CATALANI: “Ebben?  Ne andrò lontana” (Maria Callas)
6.   MOZART: “Là, ci darem la mano” from Don Giovanni (Plácido Domingo; Susan Graham)
7.   RICHARD STRAUSS: “Mir ist die Ehre widerfahren” from Der Rosenkavalier (Natalie Dessay;
      Angelika Kirchschlager
8.   ROSSINI: “Una voce poco fa” from Il barbiere di Siviglia (Vivica Genaux)
9.   PUCCINI: “Dovunque al mondo” from Madama Butterfly (Jonas Kaufmann)
10. MOZART: “Dove sono” from Le nozze di Figaro (Barbara Hendricks)
11. BELLINI: “Casta Diva” from Norma (Cheryl Studer)
12. PUCCINI: “Che gelida manina” from La bohème (Rolando Villazón)
13. CILEA: “Ecco: respiro apenna.  Io son l’umile ancella” from Adriana Lecouvreur (Kiri Te Kanawa)
14. GLUCK: “Che farò senza Euridice?” from Orfeo ed Euridice (David Daniels)
15. MOZART: “Or sai chi l’onore” from Don Giovanni (Joan Sutherland)
16. HANDEL: “Fronde tenere…Ombra mai fu” from Serse (Gérard Lesne)
17. PUCCINI: “E lucevan le stele” from Tosca (Roberto Alagna)
18. MONTEVERDI: “Pur ti miro” from L’incoronazione di Poppea (Philippe Jaroussky; Nuria Rial)
50 Best Series
Nine new titles
Three-CD sets and downloads available April 19 from EMI Classics
EMI Classics’ 50 Best is a series of three-CD sets that feature genres of music ranging from symphonies, concertos, and solo instrumental works to chamber music, songs, and operas.  It’s a perfect and economical series for the newcomer eager for musical exploration.  This month’s nine titles are as follows: 50 Best Jazz, 50 Best Hymns, 50 Best Berlin Philharmonic, 50 Best Ballet, 50 Best Beethoven, 50 Best Puccini, 50 Best Violin, 50 Best Wedding, and 50 Best Tango.
NB: These titles were previously scheduled for release in March, but were subsequently delayed.
EMI Classics and Virgin Classics artists on tour
April 5
Ebène Quartet: Bartók, Debussy, jazz improvisations
Rhode Island Chamber Music Society (Barrington, RI)
April 5, 9, 14, 18, & 21
Diana Damrau: Rossini’s Le comte Ory (Countess Adèle; new production)
Metropolitan Opera (New York, NY)
April 5, 9, 14, 18, & 21
Joyce DiDonato: Rossini’s Le comte Ory (Isolier, role debut; new production)
Metropolitan Opera (New York, NY)
April 6
Ebène Quartet: Mozart, Debussy, Mendelssohn
Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts at University of Connecticut (Storrs, CT)
April 7
Ebène Quartet: Ravel, Bartók, Debussy
Philadelphia Chamber Music Society (Philadelphia, PA)
April 8
Ebène Quartet: Mozart, Bartók, Mendelssohn
Carnegie Hall – Weill Recital Hall (New York, NY)
April 9 & 10
Gabriela Montero: Schumann’s Piano Concerto
Cape Cod Symphony (Yarmouth Port, MA)
April 10
Ebène Quartet: repertoire TBA
Ladies Morning Musical Club (Montreal, Canada)
April 11
Ebène Quartet: Bartók, Debussy, jazz improvisations
University of Toronto (Toronto, Canada)
April 13
Ebène Quartet: Mozart, Bartók, Mendelssohn
Ensemble Music Society
Basile Theatre at the Glick Indiana History Center (Indianapolis, IN)
April 14
Ebène Quartet: Ravel, Fauré, Mendelssohn
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts (Urbana, IL)
April 15
Ebène Quartet: Ravel, Fauré, Debussy
Da Camera of Houston (Houston, TX)
April 16 & 17
Gabriela Montero: Schumann’s Piano Concerto
Spokane Symphony (Spokane, WA)
April 17
Ebène Quartet: Mozart, Bartók, Mendelssohn
University of Florida (Gainesville, FL)
April 21–23
David Fray: Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2
Cleveland Orchestra (debut) / Kurt Masur (Cleveland, OH)
April 29 – May 14
Kate Royal: Gluck’s Orfeo e Euridice (house debut)
Metropolitan Opera (New York, NY)
April 29
Gabriela Montero: recital
Jaqua Concert Hall (Eugene, OR)
May 1
Gabriela Montero: recital
Florence Gould Theater (San Francisco, CA)
May 6
Gabriela Montero: Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue
ProMusica Chamber Orchestra (Columbus, OH)
May 7, 10, & 13
Joyce DiDonato: R. Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos (Composer) (house role debut)
Metropolitan Opera (New York, NY)
May 16
Kate Royal: recital (“A Lesson in Love”)
André-Turp Musical Society (Montreal, Canada)
May 20
Kate Royal: recital (“A Lesson in Love”)
Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall (New York, NY)
May 24
Kate Royal: recital (“A Lesson in Love”)
Herbst Theatre (San Francisco, CA)
May 29 – July 3
Nina Stemme: Wagner’s Ring des Nibelungen
San Francisco Opera (San Francisco, CA)
June 1 & 2
Gabriela Montero: Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
Toronto Symphony / Peter Oundjian (Toronto, Canada)
June 2–5
Gautier and Renaud Capucon: Brahms’s Double Concerto
Los Angeles Philharmonic / Dudamel (Los Angeles, CA)
June 4
Gabriela Montero: recital
Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival (Amelia Island, FL)
June 10
Gabriela Montero: Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto
Dallas Symphony Orchestra (Dallas, TX)




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