Press Room

EMI Classics & Virgin Classics November 2008 preview

Karl Jenkins – Quirk (The concertos)

Neil Percy, John Alley, Gareth Davies, Catrin Finch, Marat Bisengaliev
London Symphony Orchestra / Karl Jenkins
CD and downloads available November 11, 2008

“As a composer, he recognizes no boundaries – musical, commercial,
geographical, or cultural. His is a way of thinking and composing that
is perfectly in tune with the spirit of the times…” – Classic FM

The latest Karl Jenkins release on EMI Classics features world-premiere
recordings of four recent concertos: Over The Stone (a double harp concerto), La Folia (for marimba), Quirk (a concertante for flutes, keyboards, and percussion), and Sarikiz (a violin concerto). The album is rounded off with a re-recording of the first movement of Palladio, a concerto grosso that Jenkins composed in 1996.

Describing these works, Jenkins says: “As is usually the case, I have
dipped into other cultures, Kazakh, Indian, Latin American, etc., and
[I have] also introduced some oddball combinations such as a marimba
playing, essentially, baroque music [in La Folia].”

Jenkins is one of the most prolific and often-performed composers in the world today. His Armed Man: A Mass For Peace alone has sold hundreds of thousands of copies worldwide and has been performed nearly 400 times in recent years.

A recent five-star review of the new album in London’s Independent was unequivocally enthusiastic:

Karl Jenkins is a rarity among contemporary composers, balancing
popularity with innovation, his fancy for unusual instrumental
combinations not diminishing his salability. Like Robert Wyatt, Jenkins
paid his jazz-rock dues in Soft Machine, of which he became the final
custodian, and that questing spirit is well in evidence here in pieces
such as La Folia (“Leaves”), his concerto for marimba and orchestra,
and in Quirk itself. “Snap” alternates noir-ish film music in the style
of Elmer Bernstein with staccato flute, piano, and marimba, recalling
John Adams; “Chasing the Goose” locates gestalt between salsa and
quirky cartoon music; the variegations of “Raga Religioso” are
well-signaled by its pan-cultural title. Over the Stone is a double
harp concerto commissioned by Prince Charles, while the violin concerto
Sarikiz uses Kazakh hand percussion as part of the accompaniment to
Marat Bisengaliev’s dazzling performance, full of galloping gypsy brio.
Finally, there’s a definitive Allegretto from Palladio, well-known from
TV commercials.


Puccini; Verdi; Bellini; Donizetti
Liping Zhang, soprano
City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Giordano Bellincampi
CD and download available November 11 from EMI Classics

“This is a singer, indeed a theatrical experience, not to be missed.” – Detroit News review of Zhang’s Cio-Cio San

A series of outstanding interpretations in both the bel canto and lyric
repertoire have helped to establish the young Chinese-Canadian soprano,
Liping Zhang, as one of opera’s most exciting new sopranos on the
international scene today, with engagements at New York’s Metropolitan
Opera, London’s Royal Opera House Covent Garden, the Opéra de Paris,
and more. Critics have raved about her elegant tone and intensity on
stage. Now, EMI Classics is proud to present her debut album, a vocal
recital featuring arias from all her most critically acclaimed roles,
including Tosca, Cio-Cio San, Lucai, Norma, and more.


1. Verdi: “Mercè, dilette amiche” from I vespri Siciliani
2. Bellini: “Casta Diva” from Norma
3. Verdi: “Timor di me? … D’amor sull’ali rosee” from Il trovatore
4. Puccini: “Vissi d’arte” from Tosca
5. Verdi: “Egli non riede ancora … non so le tetre immagini” from Il corsaro
6. Puccini: “Un bel dì, vedremo” from Madama Butterfly
7. Donizetti: “Mad scene” from Lucia di Lammermoor
8. Puccini: “Ch’il bel sogno di Doretta” from La rondine
9. Verdi: “E strano! è strano! … Sempre libera” from La traviata

Bach: Complete Flute and Harpsichord Sonatas

Emmanuel Pahud, flute
Trevor Pinnock, harpsichord
Two-CD set and downloads available November 11 from EMI Classics

playing is always crisp and stylish, whether in virtuoso display or in
more tender passages where the flute traces a line of filigree
delicacy.”– Daily Telegraph

Swiss-French flautist Emmanuel Pahud, named as “one of the finds of the decade” by Gramophone,
is one of today’s most exciting and adventurous musicians. Appointed
Principal Flute for the Berliner Philharmoniker when he was just 22,
his solo albums for EMI Classics have sold over 400,000 copies

Pahud now explores
the genius of Johann Sebastian Bach in a two-CD set featuring all the
composer’s flute sonatas. These works were written between about 1720
and 1741, at a time when the recorder was being superseded by the
transverse flute, and enabled Bach to celebrate the technical and
expressive qualities and the tonal colors that this new instrument

World-renowned conductor and harpsichordist, Trevor Pinnock, long
celebrated for his pioneering efforts in period-instrument performance,
accompanies Pahud on the program. Through the 2008-09 season, Emmanuel
Pahud and Trevor Pinnock will perform the Bach sonatas in Japan, Korea,
Europe (Vienna, Paris, Hamburg, Copenhagen, and London) and the U.S.,
including Carnegie Hall (April 29). Other 2008-09 performance
highlights for Pahud include European tours with the Mahler Chamber
Orchestra under Marc Minkowski and with the Franz Liszt
Kammerorchester, as well as the American premiere of the Dalbavie Flute
Concerto with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Paavo Järvi.

Pahud on tour: Spring 2009

Mar 20-21 Cincinnati Symphony (U.S. premiere of Dalbavie Flute Concerto)
Apr 25 Athens, GA (Bach sonatas with Trevor Pinnock)
Apr 26 Atlanta, GA – Spivey Hall (Bach sonatas with Pinnock)
Apr 29 New York, NY – Zankel Hall (Bach sonatas with Pinnock)
May 1 Buffalo, NY – Holy Trinity Lutheran Church (Bach sonatas with Pinnock)
May 3 Baltimore, MD – Shriver Hall (Bach sonatas with Pinnock)

Beethoven String Quartets, Op. 59, No. 2 & Op. 18, No. 4

Artemis Quartet
CD and downloads available November 11, 2008 from Virgin Classics

“The Artemis Quartet makes chamber music spectacular: the quartet’s
playing is polished and precise but at the same time spontaneous,
fresh, and explosive as though the music is being improvised on the
spot.” – Cincinnati Enquirer

With their acclaimed debut release of Beethoven’s Quartets Op. 59, No.
1 and Op. 95 in 2005, the Artemis Quartet launched its projected
Beethoven Quartet cycle for Virgin Classics, which promises to be a

The two quartets
featured on the new recording, Op. 18, No. 4 in C minor and Op. 59, No.
2 in E minor, “Razumovsky”, come from Beethoven’s early and middle
periods respectively. The new release also features Artemis’s two new
members: Gregor Sigl and Friedemann Weigle.

Offenbach: La vie parisienne

Bou, Maria Riccarda Wesseling, Laurent Naouri, Marie Devellereau, Jean
Paul Fouchecourt, Jesús García, Marc Callahan, Michelle Canniccioni
Choeurs et Orchestre de L’Opéra de Lyon / Sébastien Rouland
DVD available on November 11, 2008 from Virgin Classics

“A popular hit … Pelly convincingly updates this satire on hedonistic Second Empire morals to the present day.” – Financial Times

Following its smash hit release of La fille du régiment
with Natalie Dessay and Juan Diego Flóres, Virgin Classics adds another
enticing title to its expanding DVD catalog with another new stage
production by renowned director Laurent Pelly (his third for the
label). He is accompanied in the production by his assistant Agathe
Mélinand, who once again has adapted the dialogue as in previous

Filmed in Lyons
during the hit performances of late 2007-08, the production has recast
for our modern times the satirical portrayal of Parisian life in the
Second Empire. Pelly’s wild and frenzied staging brings out the humor
and gusto of Offenbach’s operetta, and the rich cast of singers –
including Laurent Naouri, Natalie Dessay’s husband – sparkle under the
lively baton of Sébastien Rouland.

Angela Gheorghiu: My Puccini

Specially-priced CD + DVD set and download available November 11 from EMI Classics

“Angela Gheorghiu never sounds better than when singing Puccini …”– Guardian

Throughout the world, opera companies and fans have been celebrating
the 150th anniversary of the birth of the beloved Italian composer
Giacomo Puccini. With his birth date of December 22, 1858, the
celebrations will reach fever pitch now as EMI releases one of its best
and most appealing Puccini anniversary releases.

Angela Gheorghiu: My Puccini
showcases the world’s leading Puccini soprano in a tantalizing and
generous selection of arias from the composer’s most popular operas.
Featured tracks are drawn from Gheorghiu’s extensive discography on EMI
Classics, including several collaborations with her husband, tenor
Roberto Alagna. Accompanying the CD is a special bonus DVD of
previously unreleased material showing stunning footage of Gheorghiu
singing Puccini, as well as an interview in which she speaks about the

Gheorghiu will be busy
in the U.S. this season with major Puccini performances, at San
Francisco Opera (La bohème, November 16-30) and New York’s Metropolitan Opera (La rondine, December 31 – February 26). She will also star in Donizetti’s Elisir d’amore at the Met this spring (March 31 – April 15). In December, Gheorghiu will be the cover artist for Opera News, the largest-circulation classical music publication in the United States.

Angela Gheorghiu’s voice has been widely acclaimed by critics and
audiences alike for its singular beauty and expressive variety. In
demand all over the world, she has won many major awards, including two
Gramophone and two Diapason d’Or awards, the U.S. Critics’ Award, the
Caecilia Prize in Belgium, and the prize from the Deutsche
Schallplattenkritik. In 2001, she won Classical Artist of the Year at
the Classical Brit Awards.

Earlier this fall, EMI Classics released a DVD of Gheorghiu as Mimì in
the Met’s now classic Zeffirelli production of La bohème, which was broadcast to movie theaters in the Met’s Emmy Award-winning “Live in HD” series.


1. “Mi chiamano Mimì” from La bohème, Act I (Mimì)
2. “O soave fanciulla” from La bohème, Act I (Mimì)
3. “Donde lieta uscì” from La bohème, Act III (Mimì)
4. “Chi il bel sogno di Doretta?” from La rondine, Act I (Magda)
5. “Denaro! Nient’altro che denaro!” from La rondine, Act I (Magda)
6. “Forse, come la rondine” from La rondine, Act I (Magda)
7. “Figliuolo, tu mi dici” from La rondine, Act III (Magda)
8. “No! Non dir questo! … Ma come puoi lascarmi?” from La rondine, Act III (Magda)
9. “Senza mamma” from Suor Angelica (Angelica)
10. “O mio babbino caro” from Gianni Schicchi (Lauretta)
11. “In quelle trine morbide” from Manon Lescaut, Act II (Manon)
12. “Sola, perduta, abbandonata” from Manon Lescaut, Act IV (Manon)
13. “Mario! … Son qui!” from Tosca, Act I (Tosca)
14. “Vissi d’arte” from Tosca, Act II (Tosca)
15. “Senti, l’ora è vicina” from Tosca, Act III (Tosca)
16. “Come è lunga l’attesa!” from Tosca, Act III (Tosca)

1. “Un bel dì” from Madama Butterfly (EMI promotional video, PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
2. “Tu, che di gel sei cinta” from Turandot, Act III
3. “Vogliatemi bene” from Madama Butterfly (with Roberto Alagna)
4. “O mio babbino caro” from Gianni Schicchi
5. “Angela Gheorghiu – Reflections on Puccini” (Gheorghiu in
conversation, recorded especially for this DVD)

Puccini: Il trittico (Il tabarro; Suor Angelica; Gianni Schicchi)

Victoria de los Ángeles, Tito Gobbi
Coro e Orchestra del Teatro dell’Opera di Roma / Gabriele Santini, Tullio Serafin, Vincenzo Bellezza
Specially-priced three-CD set and downloads available November 11, 2008

EMI Classics adds a classic set of Puccini operas to its landmark Great Recordings of the Century series with the release of a three-CD set featuring the three operas that make up Puccini’s Il trittico.
These three recordings of Puccini’s operatic trio are tied together by
the casting of Tito Gobbi in the baritone roles in the first and third
operas, and by Victoria de los Ángeles as the soprano in the second and
third. Both singers were at the zenith of their careers in the late
1950s, and these recordings are a remarkable document of their
unparalleled performances of Puccini’s music.

GEMINI series

Ten new titles
Two-for-the-price-of-one-CD sets and downloads available from EMI Classics November 11, 2008

EMI Classics expands its GEMINI series to a total of 175 titles with
the releases of ten new two-for-the-price-of-one titles. The series,
which has sold half a million units worldwide, combines superb value
with equally superb artistry, showcasing the singers, conductors,
soloists, and ensembles that have made the EMI Classics catalog one of
the most admired in the industry. EMI’s rich legacy of recording
expertise comes to the fore in performances from the 1960s to the 1990s.

Most GEMINI titles are collections of works by single composers,
originally recorded between the 1960s and 1990s, making them the ideal
place either to start or develop a collection of classical music. For
an appealingly low price, each set contains over two hours of music,
all digitally re-mastered to the highest standards at the world-famous
Abbey Road Studios. Attractively designed, with space-saving brilliant
boxes, each CD booklet includes detailed notes on the music, in three
languages. Where possible, EMI has published on its website sung texts
and complete opera librettos, with translations into English, French,
and German, in downloadable PDF format. Those texts are available for
download on the GEMINI mini site within the EMI Classics main site, at

Featured artists in the new installment include Plácido Domingo,
Natalie Dessay, Deborah Voigt, Janet Baker, Jean-Philippe Collard,
Simon Rattle, Michel Plasson, and Claudio Abbado. Repertoire details

Bach: Brandenburg and Violin Concertos
Yehudi Menuhin, Bath Festival Orchestra

Bach: Christmas Oratorio
Janet Baker, Robert Tear, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Elly Ameling
Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields / Sir Philip Ledger

Beethoven: Fidelio
Jon Villars, Angela Denoke, Thomas Quasthoff
Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Berliner Philharmoniker / Simon Rattle

Beethoven: Symphonies 1, 2, 3 (“Eroica”), and 8
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra / Wolfgang Sawallisch

Berlioz: Roméo et Juliette; Les nuits d’été
Jessye Norman, John Aler, Simon Estes, Janet Baker
Riccardo Muti, Sir John Barbirolli

Handel: Messiah
Kathleen Battle, Florence Quivar, John Aler, Samuel Ramey
Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, Toronto Symphony Orchestra / Sir Andrew Davis

Korngold: Symphony; Violin Concerto; Piano Trio; Arias
Kiri Te Kanawa, Thomas Hampson, Ulf Hoelscher
Willi Mattes, Franz Welser-Möst

Palestrina: Motets and Masses
Choir of King’s College, Cambridge / Sir Philip Ledger, Sir David Willcocks

Penderecki: Symphony No. 2 (“Christmas”), Sacred Works
Polish Radio Chorus and Symphony Orchestra / Krzysztof Penderecki

Sibelius: Kullervo; Tapiola; The Oceanides; Karelia; Finlandia
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra / Paavo Berglund

American Classics series

Ten new titles
Single and two-CD sets and downloads available November 25 from EMI Classics

EMI Classics is proud to present the second installment in its handsomely designed new American Classics series.
These distinctive single- and double-CD sets offer programs of uniquely
compelling music written exclusively by American composers – from
symphonies, concertos, and solo instrumental works, to chamber music,
songs, and opera.

Among the
artists featured on the new releases are Deborah Voigt, Thomas Hampson,
Jay Ungar and Molly Mason, Barbara Hendricks, and more. Repertoire
highlights include two volumes of piano sonatas, single-composer albums
exploring the music of Barber, Bernstein, Cage, Copland, Ives, Joplin,
and Grofé, and a song collection featuring music by Foster, Griffes,
and Copland.

Program details follow.

American Piano Sonatas, Vol. 1 – Copland, Ives, Carter, Barber
Peter Lawson

American Piano Sonatas, Vol. 2 – Griffes, Sessions, Ives
Peter Lawson

Samuel Barber: Cello Sonata; Excursions; Summer Music
Alan Stepansky, Israela Margalit, Jeanne Baxtresser, Joseph Robinson

Leonard Bernstein: Candide Overture; Fancy Free; Symphony No. 2 “The Age of Anxiety”
Jeffrey Kahane
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra / Andrew Litton

John Cage: Concert for Piano and Orchestra; Credo in Us; Imaginary Landscape No. 1; Rozart Mix; Music for Carillon
Burkhard Wissemann, Michael Dietz, Bell Imhoff, Doris Sandrock
Ensemble Musica Negativa / Rainer Riehn

Aaron Copland: Clarinet Concerto; Music for the Theater; Dance Panels
David Shifrin, Mark Hill, Neil Baum
New York Chamber Symphony / Gerard Schwarz

Stephen Foster: Songs; Charles Tomlinson Griffes: The Rose of the Night; Aaron Copland: Eight Poems of Emily Dickenson
Thomas Hampson, Jay Ungar, David Alpher, Molly Mason, Deborah Voigt,
Brian Zeger, Barbara Hendricks

Ferde Grofé: Grand Canyon Suite; Mississippi Suite; Death Valley Suite
Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra / Felix Slatkin
Capitol Symphony Orchestra / Ferde Grofé

Charles Ives: Songs; Piano Trio; Violin Sonatas Nos. 2 & 4

Deborah Voigt, Brian Zeger, Glenn Dicterow, Alan Stepansky, Israela Margalit

Scott Joplin: Rags and Waltzes
Joshua Rifkin, The Southland Stingers

Classic Christmas Carols

Choir of King’s College, Cambridge
Two-CD set and downloads available November 25 from EMI Classics

The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge has always been synonymous with
Christmas – from the annual television broadcast of their Lessons and
Carols Service to their numerous best-selling albums of Christmas songs
and masses. Now EMI Classics is proud to present a two-CD compilation
of their greatest recordings of Christmas carols – just in time for the


CD 1
1. Once in royal David’s city (descant: Willcocks)
2. Ding dong! merrily on high (arr. Willcocks)
3. O come, all ye faithful (arr. Willcocks)
4. The Holly and the Ivy (arr. Walford Davies)
5. Hark! the herald angels sing (arr. Willcocks)
6. Silent Night (arr. Willcocks)
7. While shepherds watched (descant: Willcocks)
8. In the bleak midwinter (Darke)
9. God rest you merry, gentlemen (arr. Willcocks)
10. The Lamb (Tavener)
11. Angels, from the realms of glory (arr. Ledger)
12. Adam lay ybounden (Ord)
13. The Three Kings (Cornelius)
14. I saw a maiden (arr. Pettman)
15. Whence is that goodly fragrance (arr. Willcocks)
16. Quem pastores laudavere (arr. Rutter)
17. Tomorrow shall be my dancing day (arr. Willcocks)
18. A maiden most gentle (arr. Carter)
19. A Spotless Rose (Howells)
20. Sans Day Carol (arr. Rutter)
21. I wonder as I wander (arr. Carter)
22. The Cherry Tree Carol (arr. Willcocks)
23. I sing of a maiden (Hadley)
24. Gabriel’s Message (arr. Pettman)
25. Personent hodie (arr. Holst)

CD 2
1. The First Nowell (arr. Stainer)
2. In dulci jubilo (arr. Pearsall)
3. O little town of Bethlehem (descant: Armstrong)
4. I saw three ships (arr. Ledger)
5. It came upon the midnight clear (descant: Willcocks)
6. Away in a manger (arr. Ledger)
7. Sussex Carol (arr. Willcocks)
8. O come, O come, Emmanuel (arr. Willcocks)
9. Myn Lyking (Terry)
10. Jesus Christ the Apple Tree (Poston)
11. All my heart this night rejoices (Ebeling)
12. Dormi, Jesu (Rutter)
13. Riu, riu, chiu (Mateo Flecha the elder)
14. O little one sweet (harm. J. S. Bach; sung in German)
15. The Shepherds’ Cradle Song (arr. Macpherson)
16. How far is it to Bethlehem? (arr. Willcocks)
17. The Truth from Above (harm. Vaughan Williams)
18. Up! good Christen folk and listen (harm. Woodward)
19. Remember, O thou man (Ravenscroft)
20. Quittez, pasteurs (arr. Ledger)
21. The Lord at first did Adam make (arr. Willcocks)
22. The Infant King (arr. Willcocks)
23. A child is born in Bethlehem (Scheidt)
24. And all in the morning (harm. Vaughan Williams)
25. Of the Father’s heart begotten (arr. Willcocks)
26. Organ voluntary: In dulci jubilo, BWV 729 (J. S. Bach)

Messiaen: 100th Anniversary Box Set

14-CD set available November 25 from EMI Classics

Olivier Messiaen was born on December 10, 1908 in Avignon. From 1919
until 1930, he studied at the Paris Conservatoire, where his teachers
included Paul Dukas and the great organist and improviser Marcel Dupré.
He developed a deeply distinctive style of composing that grew out of
two very different parts of his personality: his profound Catholic
faith and his profound love of nature, especially birds (he was a
devoted ornithologist). From these he created a highly original sonic
palette, which he employed in works for orchestra, chamber and solo
instruments, and choir.

To celebrate his centenary, EMI Classics is releasing a boxed set with
14 CDs of his greatest music. Messiaen himself plays on four CDs of his
solo organ music; his wife, Yvonne Loriod, plays the piano in Quatuor pour la fin du temps; and his sister-in-law, Jeanne Loriod, plays the “ondes-martenot” in the Turangalîla-symphonie. Although most works have been issued on CD before, some, like the two CDs of Mélodies, are quite rare, and two are making their first appearance in this medium: Quatre études de rythme and Cantéyodjâya played by Michel Beroff and John Ogdon respectively.

20th-Century Masterpieces

16-CD set available November 25 from EMI Classics

At no time in its long history did European music go through a period
of such revolution and diversification as in the 20th century. Wagner
had transformed music in the 19th century to the extent that every
composer coming after had to acknowledge his existence in some way. The
result was, at the advent of the new century, a great flourishing of
compositional styles and techniques, as well as profound technological
advance and invention. The gramophone and, later, the spread of radio,
brought about massive changes in the way that ordinary people accessed
and perceived music. Suddenly a whole new world of serious music was
available to an audience that had hitherto been excluded from what had
previously been, albeit unintentionally, an elitist art form.

The works in this set of 16 CDs have been arranged in strict
chronological order of composition and the first disc begins with a
work from 1901 that has become one of the most popular works in the
classical repertoire: Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto.

Thereafter, each disc in the set takes the listener on a fascinating
journey through the century, composer by composer and work by work,
from Russian Romanticism, French Impressionism, English Pastoralism,
Atonality, and Neo-classicism right up to Post-modernism, and from as
wide a range of countries and genres as possible. Composers range from
Elgar and Vaughan Williams to Stravinsky, Webern, Mahler, Barber,
Boulez, Adés, Takemitsu, and many, many more!

Britten: The Collector’s Edition

37-CD set available November 25 from EMI Classics

Benjamin Britten was undoubtedly one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, the creator of such towering operas as Peter Grimes, Billy Budd, and The Turn of the Screw; his profoundly moving masterpiece, the War Requiem; orchestral works such as the Cello Symphony (for Rostropovich) and the Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra; as well as captivating string quartets, and numerous vocal and choral works.

EMI’s new 37-CD set features all of Britten’s most important works,
giving a comprehensive overview for beginners as well as fantastic
value for seasoned collectors. Featured artists include Sir Simon
Rattle, Paavo Järvi, Sir Neville Marriner, Daniel Harding, Steven
Isserlis, Peter Pears, Britten himself on the piano, and more!

Composers In Person Box Set

22-CD set available November 25 from EMI Classics

One of the most persistent questions that musicians inevitably ponder
while practicing a piece is that of how the composer himself might have
performed it. There are many written reports on how the old masters
such as Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven may have played or improvised, and
there are lines of teacher-pupil relationships that can trace their
lineage back to the pianistic greats such as Liszt, but still we have
to imagine the sound since we cannot actually hear it.

This changed in the 20th century with Edison’s invention of the
recording machine. Since then, several composers have left us an
extensive catalog of recorded performances, most notably Edward Elgar,
Igor Stravinsky, and Benjamin Britten. Others, like Olivier Messiaen,
Heitor Villa-Lobos, and William Walton have left us significant, though
limited, editions. All too many, however, have merely left us a mere
fraction of their output. With the release this month of its Composers in Person boxed set, EMI Classics brings together these remarkable documents in one momentous 22-CD set.

The set offers a stunning range of modern composers performing their
own works, either on the piano, organ, or violin, or else from behind
the podium, and includes such greats as Holst, Prokofiev, Messiaen,
Shostakovich, Britten, and Stravinsky, along with lesser-known
luminaries such as Medtner, Roussel, Pfitzner, and Widor. It offers a
fascinating study for musicians and musicologists, as well as an
excitingly varied selection of modern music for collectors.

The Legend of Sacred Music

Two-for-price-of-one-CD set and downloads available November 25 from Virgin Classics

From Allegri’s sublime Miserere to Barber’s deeply-moving Agnus Dei,
this new attractively priced (two CDs for the price of one) compilation
from Virgin Classics offers an inspiring tour of sacred music across
the ages.

The featured
performances are drawn from both the Virgin Classics and EMI Classics
catalogs, including artists such as Stephanie Blythe, Barbara Bonney,
Véronique Gens, Barbara Hendricks, Gérard Lesne, Philippe Herreweghe,
Richard Hickox, Riccardo Muti, Roger Norrington, Andrew Parrott, David
Willcocks, and more!


CD 1
1. Verdi: “Dies irae” from Requiem
2. Barber: Agnus Dei
3. Handel: Dixit Dominus
4. Allegri: Miserere (excerpt)
5. Bach: “Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben” from Cantata BWV 147
6. Mozart: “Laudate Dominum” from Vesperae solennes de confessore
7. Lotti: Crucifixus
8. Bach: “Gloria” from Mass in B minor, BWV 232
9. Fauré: Cantique de Jean Racine
10. Puccini: “Kyrie” from Missa da Gloria
11. Mozart: “Kyrie” from Requiem
12. Mozart: “Lacrimosa” from Requiem
13. Haydn: “Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes” from Die Schöpfung
14. Schubert: “Heilig, heilig, heilig” from German Mass, D.872
15. Beethoven: Die Ehre Gottes aus der Natur (Die Himmel rühmen) Op. 48, No. 4
16. Mendelssohn: “Alsdann wird euer Licht hervorbrechen” from Elijah
17. Duruflé: Ubi caritas
18. Fauré: “Pie Jesu” from Requiem
19. Fauré: “In paradisum” from Requiem

CD 2
1. Handel: “Hallelujah” from Messiah
2. Pergolesi: “Stabat Mater” from Stabat Mater
3. Vivaldi: “Gloria in excelsis Deo” from Gloria in D major, RV 589
4. Mozart: “Et incarnatus est” from Great Mass in C minor, K.427
5. Mozart: Ave verum corpus, K.618
6. Rossini: “Inflammatus et accensus” from Stabat Mater
7. Gounod: “Sanctus” from Messe solennelle de Sainte Cécile
8. Poulenc: “Laudamus te” from Stabat Mater
9. Verdi: “Ave Maria” from Four Sacred Pieces
10. Bach: “Es ist vollbracht” from St. John Passion, BWV 245
11. Bach: “Ruht wohl, ihr heilige Gebeine” from St. John Passion, BWV 245
12. Handel: Zadok the Priest
13. Brahms: “Wie lieblich sind deine Wohnungen” from A German Requiem
14. Rachmaninov: Ave Maria
15. Pärt: Magnificat
16. Duruflé: Notre Père, Op. 14

Classical Zen

Specially-priced three-CD set and downloads available November 25 from Virgin Classics

In these trying times, the search for inner peace and calm is never
easy. But Virgin Classics helps the cause with this release of a
specially priced three-CD set: Classical Zen. From the soothing sounds of Satie’s Gymnopédie to the transcendent beauty of Barber’s Adagio, this compilation offers more than three hours of musical bliss.

Track list

CD 1
1. Albinoni: Adagio
2. Bach: “Air” from Suite No. 3, BWV 1068
3. Barber: Adagio for strings
4. Beethoven: “Adagio sostenuto” from Piano Sonata No. 14, Op. 27, No. 2 “Moonlight”
5. Chopin: Prélude, Op. 28, No. 4
6. Debussy: “Clair de lune” from Suite bergamasque
7. Debussy: “Des pas sur la neige” from Préludes, Book I
8. Debussy: “La cathédrale engloutie” from Préludes, Book I
9. Dvorák: Slavonic Dance, Op. 72, No. 2
10. Grieg: “Ase death” from Peer Gynt
11. Saint-Saëns: “Aquarium” from Le carnaval des animaux

CD 2
1. Mendelssohn: “Nocturne” from A Midsummer Night’s Dream
2. Mozart: “Andante” from Piano Concerto No. 21, K.467
3. Mozart: “Adagio” from Clarinet Concerto, K.622
4. Mozart: “Larghetto” from Clarinet Quintet, K.581
5. Mussorgsky (orch. Ravel): “Il vecchio castello” from Pictures at an Exhibition
6. Offenbach: “Barcarolle” from Les contes d’Hoffmann
7. Pärt: Solfeggio
7. Poulenc: “Larghetto” from Concerto for two pianos
8. Rachmaninov: Vocalise, Op. 34
9. Ravel: “Le jardin féérique” from Ma mère l’Oye
10. Ravel: “Adagio” from Concerto in G
11. Rodrigo: “Adagio” from Concierto d’Aranjuez

CD 3
1. Satie: Gymnopédie No. 3
2. Schumann: “Träumerei” from Kinderszenen
3. Sibelius: Valse triste
4. R. Strauss: Morgen, Op. 27, No. 4
5. Tavener: Finale from The Protecting Veil
6. Tchaikovsky: “Canzonetta” from Violin Concerto, Op. 35
7. Vaughan Williams: Greensleeves
8. Villa-Lobos: “Aria (Cantilena)” from Bachianas Brasileiras, No. 5
9. Vivaldi: “Largo (Il sonno)” from La notte, Flute Concerto, Op. 10
10. Wagner: Excerpt from Siegfried Idyll


In celebration of its 20th anniversary, Virgin Classics brought
together an exceptional group of its artists for a unique concert as
part of the “C’est pas classique” festival in Nice, France, on November
1, 2008.

A glittering array of
the label’s leading artists performed at the gala event, including
Philippe Jaroussky, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, Diana Damrau, Piotr
Anderszewski, Nicholas Angelich, Artemis Quartet, David Fray, Max
Emanuel Cencic, Ian Bostridge, Jérome Ducros, Francesco Meli, and
Vicente Pradal. Philippe Bender conducted the L’Orchestre de Cannes
Provence Alpes Cote d’Azur.

Though an integral part of legendary EMI Classics, Virgin Classics
continues to assert its creative independence. For the past 20 years,
the label has sustained a clear and distinctive vision. Part of this
vision is a readiness to break the boundaries of the traditional
classical repertoire. Virgin Classics has created a “family” of artists
and is committed to encouraging them to take a fresh, personal approach
in their interpretations, thus capturing the musical spirit of our
time. With a focus on baroque music, singers, and new artists, Virgin
Classics has proven itself to be a label rich in new ideas, energy, and
healthy ambition.

Established Virgin Classics artists like Natalie Dessay, Philippe
Jaroussky, Emmanuelle Haïm, Renaud Capuçon, Gautier Capuçon, Rolando
Villazón, Piotr Anderszewski, Fabio Biondi, Nicholas Angelich, Patrizia
Ciofi, Artemis Quartet, David Daniels, William Christie, Truls Mork,
Véronique Gens, Vivica Genaux, Paavo Järvi, and Daniel Harding have
recently been joined by such unique talents as Diana Damrau, Joyce
DiDonato, David Fray, Quatuor Ebène, Jérémie Rhorer, and Max Emanuel

The label is also home to composers and performers who further broaden
our cultural horizons by drawing on other musical traditions, among
them Hughes de Courson, Vicente Pradal, Lambert Wilson, and Craig

Awarded numerous prestigious prizes for its recordings, Virgin Classics
has also held the title of Gramophone magazine’s
Label of the Year, an acknowledgment of the importance and durability
of its presence in the international classical music scene.

EMI Classics and Virgin Classics artists on tour: key dates Nov/Dec 2008

Nov 15, 16 Thomas Adès conducts the Los Angeles Philharmonic in his own music (America: A Prophecy and Tevot) and music by Berlioz at Walt Disney Concert Hall

Nov 16 Angela Gheorghiu stars in La bohème at the San Francisco Opera (also Nov 19, 22, 25, 28, 30)

Nov 18 Renaud & Gautier Capuçon and pianist Nicholas Angelich
perform Haydn, Shostakovich, and Mendelssohn in Charlottesville, VA;
Washington DC’s Kennedy Center (Nov 21); and New York’s Metropolitan
Museum of Art (Nov 22)

Nov 22 Thomas Adès conducts the New World Symphony in Miami Beach in his own music (These Premises Are Alarmed and Tevot) and US premieres by Barry

Dec 3 Piotr Anderszewski recital at New York’s Carnegie Hall

Dec 6 Jonathan Biss and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra perform Mozart together at Carnegie Hall, NY in support of their new album (Oct 14 release)

Dec 31 Angela Gheorghiu stars in La rondine at New York’s Metropolitan Opera (also Jan 3, 6, 9, 13, Feb 11, 14, 19, 23, 26)

# # #

For further information:
EMI US contact:
Mariko Tada at [email protected]; (212) 786-8964
21C Media Group contact: Glenn Petry at [email protected]; (212) 625-2038

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