yes


Serafim Smigelskiy, the cellist in the Tesla Quartet, playing alone in Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Photo by Benjamin Norman for The New York Times

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Live Concert from the Church St Nicolai, Leipzig – Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, Ludwig van Beethoven – Nancy Argenta, Viktoria Mullova, Jürgen Wolf, Gewandhausorchester, Gewandhaus Choir, Thomanerchor Leipzig, Herbert Blomstedt, Georg Christoph Biller (HD 1080p)














At the benefit concert Refuge for the Rising performed on October 9, 1999 in Leipzig's Nikolai Church, the Gewandhaus Orchestra and the Thomaner Chorus played in and for the benefit of the church that marks a decisive historical point in recent German history. The performance commemorated the tenth anniversary of the "peace prayers" and the "peaceful revolution" that began here with the decisive "Monday demonstration" of October 9, 1989, exactly one month before the fall of the Berlin Wall. An extensive documentation, Protest of Silence, reports on the development and background of this historically significant day.



Live Concert from the Church St Nicolai, Leipzig

„Wir sind das Volk“

Refuge of Awakening – Leipzig commemorates 9th October 1989


Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

♪ 
Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV 565 (1703-1707)**** [00:56]*

♪ "Fürchte dich nicht", BWV 228 (1726? in Leipzig)***** [9:34]


♪ Partita in D minor for Solo Violin No.2, BWV 1004 (1720)** [18:26]

v. Chaconne


Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (1809-1847)

♪ Elijah, Op.70 (1846, rev.1847)

Aria: Höre, Israel, höre des Herrn Stimme *** [32:06]
Chorus: Fürchte dich nicht ****** [38:15]


Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

♪ Symphony No.5 in C minor, Op.67 (1807-1808) [42:41]

i. Allegro con brio
ii. Andante con moto
iii. Scherzo: Allegro
iv. Allegro


Johann Sebastian Bach

♪ Mass in B minor, BWV 232 (1749)

Dona nobis pacem *****/****** [1:20:11]


Victoria Mullova, violin **
Nancy Argenta, soprano ***
Jürgen Wolf, organ ****

Gewandhausorchester
Conductor: Herbert Blomstedt

Thomanerchor Leipzig *****
Chorus master: Georg Christoph Biller

Gewandhaus Choir ******

Directed by Bob Coles

Church St Nicolai, Leipzig, October 9, 1999

(HD 1080p)

* Start time of each work


Jürgen Wolf













Thomanerchor Leipzig













Georg Christoph Biller













Victoria Mullova













Nancy Argenta













Gewandhaus Choir













Herbert Blomstedt














More photos


See also


Johann Sebastian Bach: "Fürchte dich nicht", BWV 228 | Felix Mendelssohn: "Denn er hat seinen Engeln befohlen über dir" – Thomanerchor Leipzig, Georg Christoph Biller (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Romances for Violin and Orchestra No.1 in G major & No.2 in F major – Renaud Capuçon, Gewandhausorchester, Kurt Masur (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: "Egmont" Overture – Gewandhausorchester, Kurt Masur (HD 1080p)

Johannes Brahms: Symphony No.2 in D major – Gewandhausorchester, Kurt Masur (HD 1080p)


Monday, March 26, 2018

Jan Dismas Zelenka: Missa Divi Xaverii – Hana Blažíková, Kamila Mazalová, Václav Čížek, Tomáš Král, Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)














New Year's Day falls at the end of August in Utrecht! We gather, we drink, we kiss, we wish each other well at the opening concert of the Festival of Early Music, now in its 33rd year. Literally a generation of early music lovers have now descended yearly on Utrecht, an elegant, historic and stately university city just down the tracks a bit from the bustling and obvious tourist destination, Amsterdam.

Last evening's concert was especially celebratory as it was held in the festival's birthplace, architect Herman Hertzberger's famed concert hall, recently reopened after a gruelling eight years of city planners scratching their heads, renovators juggling building codes and politicians searching for auxiliary funding. And just like Alice when she tumbled down the hole, we walked back into the future through glass doors that separate the new TivoliVredenburg concert complex from the old large hall itself, carefully closed and preserved from demolition amidst construction work.


This year's festival theme, royal with a hint of historic war, is dedicated to the Habsburg Empire: ten centuries of music from Vienna and Prague. One of the Artists in Residence is Václav Luks, a young conductor and ensemble founder of Collegium 1704 and Collegium Vocale 1704 from Bohemia. His passion for the unsung heroes of his region is already legend and last evening he quite launched himself up the stairs to the stage to grasp his programme of Fux, Tůma and Zelenka by the horns. A Te Deum followed by a Stabat Mater and a Mass was not only royal, it was a heavenly blessing for this new year.


Luks leads a lovely group: all its individuals are very good at what they do; theirs is a consistent quality. Special mention must be made however of the elegant soprano solo, Hana Blažíková as well as of the crystal clear and confident brass instrumentalists.


Beautiful and enriching repertoire, a festive occasion and a truly enthusiastic audience. All that was missing last evening was a bit of urgency and panache in the performance. Dissonances were never wrenching; fugues were a tad vertical and staid. Even in Jan Dismas Zelenka's now beloved bustling business – another relatively recent discovery of the authentic performance practice community – Collegium 1704 and their choir consorts sounded slightly run of the mill, all this despite a nearly acrobatic Luks who poured his entire body into his direction. Having said that, his ensemble's potential is a clear given. Adding a bit more bravura to the hard work and impassioned sense of discovery that Luks and co exude would quickly do the trick.

The early music festival year lasts a mere ten days. Yet with some new repertoire, a soothing return to home base and a creative programme of beautiful repertoire, we can already safely conclude that it will be a very Happy New Year.

Source: Von Cynthia Wilson, August 30, 2014 (bachtrack.com)




Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745)

♪ Missa Divi Xaverii, ZWV 12 (1729)

Hana Blažíková, soprano
Kamila Mazalová, mezzo-soprano
Václav Čížek, tenor
Marián Krejčik, bass

Collegium 1704 & Collegium Vocale 1704
Conductor: Václav Luks

Part II of the Opening Concert of Utrecht Early Music Festival, August 29, 2014

(HD 1080p)















The Missa Divi Xaverii, ZWV 12, an expansive and unusually richly scored work, marks a highlight in the oeuvre of Jan Dismas Zelenka. It was composed in 1729 while he was working at the Dresden court.

The principal source of this first edition is the damaged autograph score which had long been kept under lock and key. Passages missing because of its damaged condition have been supplemented using secondary sources or reconstructed by Václav Luks, clearly marked as such in the musical text.

The first performance to use the present new edition took place in the summer of 2014, when it was performed at the Utrecht Early Music Festival. A CD recording by Collegium 1704, conducted by Václav Luks, has been released by the label Accent.

Source: baerenreiter.com







































More photos


See also


Johann Joseph Fux: Te Deum | František Ignác Antonín Tůma: Stabat Mater – Hana Blažíková, Kamila Mazalová, Václav Čížek, Marián Krejčik, Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)

Christoph Willibald Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice – A film by Ondřej Havelka – Bejun Mehta, Eva Liebau, Regula Mühlemann – Václav Luks


Jan Dismas Zelenka: Missa Votiva in E minor – Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)


Sunday, March 25, 2018

Johann Joseph Fux: Te Deum | František Ignác Antonín Tůma: Stabat Mater – Hana Blažíková, Kamila Mazalová, Václav Čížek, Marián Krejčik, Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)














New Year's Day falls at the end of August in Utrecht! We gather, we drink, we kiss, we wish each other well at the opening concert of the Festival of Early Music, now in its 33rd year. Literally a generation of early music lovers have now descended yearly on Utrecht, an elegant, historic and stately university city just down the tracks a bit from the bustling and obvious tourist destination, Amsterdam.

Last evening's concert was especially celebratory as it was held in the festival's birthplace, architect Herman Hertzberger's famed concert hall, recently reopened after a gruelling eight years of city planners scratching their heads, renovators juggling building codes and politicians searching for auxiliary funding. And just like Alice when she tumbled down the hole, we walked back into the future through glass doors that separate the new TivoliVredenburg concert complex from the old large hall itself, carefully closed and preserved from demolition amidst construction work.

This year's festival theme, royal with a hint of historic war, is dedicated to the Habsburg Empire: ten centuries of music from Vienna and Prague. One of the Artists in Residence is Václav Luks, a young conductor and ensemble founder of Collegium 1704 and Collegium Vocale 1704 from Bohemia. His passion for the unsung heroes of his region is already legend and last evening he quite launched himself up the stairs to the stage to grasp his programme of Fux, Tůma and Zelenka by the horns. A Te Deum followed by a Stabat Mater and a Mass was not only royal, it was a heavenly blessing for this new year.

Luks leads a lovely group: all its individuals are very good at what they do; theirs is a consistent quality. Special mention must be made however of the elegant soprano solo, Hana Blažíková as well as of the crystal clear and confident brass instrumentalists.

František Ignác Antonin Tůma was the surprise of the evening, a student's of Fux and a discovery of Luks. His Stabat Mater dolorosa is an exquisite and sensitive piece, one that could easily become a true Baroque block buster. An aria for alto with an obbligato trombone was sublime.

The early music festival year lasts a mere ten days. Yet with some new repertoire, a soothing return to home base and a creative programme of beautiful repertoire, we can already safely conclude that it will be a very Happy New Year.

Source: Von Cynthia Wilson, August 30, 2014 (bachtrack.com)



Johann Joseph Fux (c.1660-1741)

♪ Te Deum, K 270 (1723) [00:00]*


František Ignác Antonín Tůma (1704-1774)

♪ Stabat Mater (1750) [13:07]


Hana Blažíková, soprano
Kamila Mazalová, mezzo-soprano
Václav Čížek, tenor
Marián Krejčik, bass

Collegium 1704 & Collegium Vocale 1704
Conductor: Václav Luks

Part I of the Opening Concert of Utrecht Early Music Festival, August 29, 2014

(HD 1080p)

* Start time of each work







































More photos


See also

Jan Dismas Zelenka: Missa Divi Xaverii – Hana Blažíková, Kamila Mazalová, Václav Čížek, Tomáš Král, Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)

Christoph Willibald Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice – A film by Ondřej Havelka – Bejun Mehta, Eva Liebau, Regula Mühlemann – Václav Luks


Jan Dismas Zelenka: Missa Votiva in E minor – Collegium 1704, Collegium Vocale 1704, Václav Luks (HD 1080p)

Friday, March 23, 2018

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major | Benjamin Britten: Violin Concerto in D minor | Jean Sibelius: Pohjola's Daughter – Augustin Hadelich, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Jukka-Pekka Saraste – Saturday, March 24, 2018, 08:00 PM EDT (GMT-4) – Livestream

Augustin Hadelich
















Beethoven regarded his Seventh Symphony as one of his best works. Premiered as part of a patriotic program honoring soldiers wounded in battle against Napoleon's forces, its first audience, still reeling from previous French occupation, enthusiastically welcomed its rhythmic energy and spontaneity. They also instantly demanded an encore of the second movement, a march-like procession among his most recognizable works, and widely found in film and television today.

Italian violinist Augustin Hadelich performs Benjamin Britten's Violin Concerto in D minor, Op.15.


Saturday, March 24
Los Angeles: 05:00 PM
Lima: 7:00 PM
Detroit, New York, Toronto: 08:00 PM
Brasília: 09:00 PM

SundayMarch 25

London: 00:00 AM
Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Madrid, Rome, Warsaw: 01:00 AM
Kiev, Athens: 2:00 AM
Jerusalem, Moscow, Ankara: 03:00 AM
Beijing, Manila: 08:00 AM
Tokyo, Seoul: 09:00 AM

Live on Livestream




Jean Sibelius (1865-1957)

♪ Pohjola's Daughter, Op.49 (1906)



Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)

♪ Violin Concerto in D minor, Op.15 (1938-1939)*

i. Moderato con moto
ii. Vivace
iii. Passacaglia: Andante lento (un poco meno mosso)


Intermission


Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

♪ Symphony No.7 in A major, Op.92 (1811-1812)


i. Poco sostenuto – Vivace

ii. Allegretto
iii. Presto – Assai meno presto (trio)
iv. Allegro con brio


Augustin Hadelich, violin*

Detroit Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Jukka-Pekka Saraste

(HD 720p)


Live from Orchestra Hall, Max M. Fisher Music Center, Detroit


Saturday, March 24, 2018, 08:00 PM EDT (GMT-4) / SundayMarch 25, 2018, 2:00 AM EET (UTC+2)


Live on Livestream


Augustin Hadelich (b. 1984, Italy) is celebrated for his technique, poetic sensitivity, and gorgeous tone. He has performed with every major American orchestra as well as an ever-growing number of ensembles in the UK, Europe, and Asia. He has also appeared at most of the world's prominent music festivals, including the BBC Proms, Tanglewood, Blossom, Aspen, Bravo!, Vail, Chautauqua, and others.

An active recitalist and chamber musician, Hadelich has appeared at Carnegie Hall, Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, the Kennedy Center, the Louvre, and elsewhere, and his collaborators include Jeremy Denk, Kim Kashkashian, Cho-Liang Lin, Joyce Yang, Midori, and members of the Guarneri and Juilliard quartets. He is a co-founder and member of the H3 Trio, alongside pianist Martin Helmchen and cellist Marie-Elisabeth Hecker. Hadelich won a Grammy Award for his recording of Dutilleux's Violin Concerto with the Seattle Symphony. His discography also includes music by Paganini, Tchaikovsky, Lalo, Mendelssohn, and others.

Hadelich has received an Avery Fisher Career Grant, a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, Lincoln Center's Martin E. Segal Award, the inaugural Warner Music Prize, and an honorary doctorate from the University of Exeter. Born in Italy to German parents, Hadelich studied with Joel Smirnoff at The Juilliard School. He plays the 1723 "Ex-Kiesewetter" Stradivari violin, on loan from Clement and Karen Arrison through the Stradivari Society of Chicago.

Source: DSO Performance Magazine, Spring 2018


Finnish conductor Jukka-Pekka Saraste began his career as a violinist before training as a conductor with Jorma Panula at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He has served as Chief Conductor of the WDR Symphony Orchestra (Cologne) since 2010, and is co-founder of the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra, Finnish Chamber Orchestra, and Tammisaari Festival. He previously held principal and guest conductorships with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and BBC Symphony Orchestra.

Saraste's guest engagements have led him to the major orchestras worldwide, including the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Munich Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskapelle, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Boston Symphony, New York Philharmonic, and many others. His discography includes the complete symphonies of Sibelius and Nielsen with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, as well as works by Bartók, Dutilleux, Mussorgsky, Mahler, Schoenberg, Stravinsky, Brahms, Bruckner, and Friedrich Cerha with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, and WDR Symphony Orchestra.

Saraste has received the Pro Finlandia Prize, the Sibelius Medal, and the Finnish State Prize for Music. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from York University, Toronto, and an honorary doctorate from the Sibelius Academy.

Source: DSO Performance Magazine, Spring 2018















Jean Sibelius: Pohjola's Daughter, Op.49

(Scored for 2 flutes, piccolo, 2 oboes, English horn, 2 bassoons, contrabassoon, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 2 cornets, 3 trombones, tuba, timpani, harp, and strings. Approx. 12 minutes.)

The lore of Finland's national epic poem, the Kalevala, runs through much of Sibelius's music, and nowhere more colorfully than in his descriptive tone poem, Pohjola’s Daughter, which he completed in 1906. Pohjola's Daughter tells the story of the aged hero, Väinämöinen, returning home from the dark northern land of Pohjola, when he suddenly looks up in the sky and sees Pohjola's daughter seated on a rainbow, spinning yarn. He woos her to no avail and, instead of coming down, she sets him the impossible task of building a boat made of splinters that fall from her spindle. Try as he might, he cannot accomplish it, so he juts his chin, gathers up his pride, and heads onward in his sleigh.

Long thought to have been composed rather quickly in 1905-06, the "symphonic fantasy", as the composer called it, went through a five-year period of gestation and transformation. Sketches for an orchestral work titled Luonnotar first appeared in 1901, when Sibelius was in Italy and working on his Second Symphony. By 1905, his letters make mention of the new symphonic phantasy and his sketchbooks indicate that themes from Luonnotar were absorbed into Pohjola's Daughter. (A vocal-orchestral work, titled Luonnotar and listed as Opus 70, later appeared in 1913).

The work reveals Sibelius's mature style in its first full bloom. It opens with several dark moody themes associated with Väinämöinen, growing out of the lower strings and woodwinds. These culminate in a brassy fanfare at the moment he spies Pohjola' s daughter. Her theme (the second subject of a symphonic sonata form) is given to the flutes in a distant key center, with a glittering harp accompaniment. Väinämöinen's attempt to build the boat while she mocks him from above is set in a long, climactic development section combining the two characters’ themes. Finally, his brass fanfare returns, heralding an opulent coda that combines with her harp theme.

Source: Carl Cunningham, DSO Performance Magazine, Spring 2018



Benjamin Britten: Violin Concerto in D minor, Op.15

(Scored for 3 flutes [2 doubling on piccolo], 2 oboes [1 doubling on English horn], 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, timpani, percussion, harp, and strings. Approx. 32 minutes.)

Edward Benjamin Britten got a good head start composing music – by age 10 he had written an oratorio and a string quartet, and by 16 he had added on a symphony, six more string quartets, 10 piano sonatas, and a number of other works. His first opera, Peter Grimes, premiered when he was just 32, and his fame solidified immediately. By the time he died he had written hundreds of works, including operas, symphonies, choral pieces, chamber music, film scores, and countless fragments and songs.

And yet there was only one violin concerto! Premiered in New York in 1940, the piece received mixed reviews, and Britten revised it in 1950 and again in 1958. The concerto is in three movements, but it inverts the typical fast-slow-fast structure and is instead slow-fast-slow, a move borrowed from Prokofiev and Walton. There is a decidedly dark hue to the work, which is seen by many as a response by the pacifist Britten to the horrors of the Spanish Civil War.

Apart from the non-traditional layout of the movements, there is the unusual role for the soloist, along with many features of Britten's distinctive style – among them economy of material subjected to very imaginative variations, and a brilliant and dramatic use of orchestral color. The first movement begins with five notes on the timpani followed by a high and lyrical melody by the solo violin, clearly an homage to the beginning of Beethoven's great concerto. The second theme is more rhythmic and insistent, and during the development the two themes are interwoven. The second movement is very fast and extremely difficult for the soloist, and is in Scherzo-and-Trio form, with the contrasting Trio section somewhat more subdued but still full of the menacing character of the movement as a whole. There is a brilliant cadenza which leads directly into the last movement, which Britten cast in the form of a passacaglia: a kind of variation form in which a melodic pattern is played repeatedly with inventive counter-melodies played over it. This was a favorite device of the composer, used to great effect in Peter Grimes. There follow nine highly inventive and expressive variations as the movement journeys to its ambiguous and unsettled conclusion.

Source: DSO Performance Magazine, Spring 2018



Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major, Op.92

(Scored for 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, timpani, and strings. Approx. 36 minutes.)

The first performance of Beethoven's Symphony No.7 took place five years after the joint premiere of his Fifth and Sixth Symphonies, and it's possible that absence made the audience's hearts grow fonder – "All persons, however they had previously dissented from his music, now agreed to award him his laurels", wrote biographer Anton Shindler about the concert (which, interestingly, was co-organized by Johann Nepomuk Mälzel, inventor of the metronome). While not as wellknown as the mighty Fifth or Ninth, Beethoven's Seventh is no less characteristic of the composer's scope and style.

The work begins with what could be the longest symphony introduction ever, a staggering 62 bars marked Poco sostenuto ("somewhat sustained"). A solo flute then introduces the main theme, which is exuberantly repeated and developed over the course of the movement.

The second movement, the Symphony's most well-known, was so applauded at the work's premiere that the ensemble encored it in its entirety. That fame persists (Poco sostenuto?), as the movement is often performed as a standalone symphonic work, and during Beethoven's lifetime it was even used to replace less-beloved movements in his other symphonies!

The third movement, a scherzo, begins with the main theme in the winds set off by the timpani. The lively tempo is only briefly interrupted by a contrasting trio, with a melody based on an old Austrian pilgrim hymn. The movement concludes with five swift chords, but not before Beethoven restates the opening bars of the trio, perhaps a promise of repetition to come later.

The frenetic final movement tumbles and bounds towards a finale that English conductor Sir Donald Tovey called "a triumph of Bacchic fury". Some suggested that the composer was drunk when he composed the movement, to which Beethoven biographer Romain Rolland responds with a resounding affirmation: "intoxicated with poetry and genius!".

Source: DSO Performance Magazine, Spring 2018












More photos


See also


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major – Wiener Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major – Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Iván Fischer (HD 1080p)

Live on Livestream: All Past Events

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Bruno Philippe & Tanguy de Williencourt interpret Ludwig van Beethoven & Franz Schubert (Audio video)






















It gives Tanguy de Williencourt and me great pleasure to present this programme devoted to Beethoven and Schubert, which moreover allows us to continue our exploration of the music of German-speaking composers.

When we first broached the idea of making a recording, it seemed apt to us to include the cello transcription of the "Kreutzer" Sonata made by Czerny. An absolute masterpiece in its original scoring, this work is in my view equally successful in its alternative guise. Beyond enriching the cello repertoire with a "sixth" Beethoven sonata, the work is thrilling to perform, notwithstanding its considerable technical challenges.


Granted, we could have chosen from among the five canonical sonatas for cello and piano; clearly these are works of genius in their own right, but the power of the "Kreutzer" Sonata captivated me to a much greater degree from the start. Upon discovering the Czerny transcription, I had the urgent desire and need to perform it. Having had several opportunities to present the transcription in recital, Tanguy and I were pleasantly surprised by the response: audiences became intrigued and proved most enthusiastic.


The Arpeggione Sonata is another matter entirely. However, this too is a transcription, played in the key of A (the tonality of A minor here and A major elsewhere forms another unifying thread). Schubert is a model of musical thinking for me, my constant companion and mentor. From my earliest years, his music has been with me, in my moments of happiness as well as at a time of difficulty; his genius was immediately self-evident, and his capacity to depict the human soul in all its guises was disarming in its simplicity. When we feel joyful, his music can intensify joy; when we experience sadness or sorrow, he manages to bring comfort, heal the wounds and lessen the pain.


This then was the genesis of the present programme, shaped by our curiosity, our thirst for challenges and our affection for the repertoire recorded here. Is there a better way to make one's entrance than in the company of Schubert and Beethoven? Are there happier companions for a debut recording? I think not. One might question the validity of releasing this disc today when much of this repertoire is already available in excellent readings by gifted performers, whose talent is renowned and venerated. The current project is the culmination of a cherished dream born of my deep affection for these works. It is also part of my endeavour to put all my faculties in the service of this music (some of the greatest ever written), as so many performers have done before me.


I realise this is a gamble and I accept the risks: our encounter with the Kreutzer and Arpeggione Sonatas has been hugely stimulating and rewarding for us. And it is now our sincere hope that you, our listeners, will derive as much joy from hearing this disc as we have had in preparing and making it. Until we meet again, in recital or via our next recording, we invite you to enjoy it!


I wish to express my gratitude to harmonia mundi and its entire staff (Christian, Patricia, Jean-Marc along with many others) for their confidence in me; to Alban Moraud for his confidence and the pleasure we derived from working with him; to Clément and Clémentine at L'Agence Artist Management for their support, trust and day-to-day efforts; to my teachers M. Mille, Y. Chiffoleau, R. Pidoux, J. Pernoo, C. Hagen, F. Helmerson; to C. Eschenbach in particular for his invaluable advice and close involvement in our musical activities; to the Beare's International Violin Society (Maja, So-Ock); to Manon, Bertrand, Jérôme D. and to my parents, to whom I dedicate this recording: to Bernard, the pieces by Beethoven, who was his favourite composer, and to Martine, those by Schubert whom she adored as much as I've come to love him today.


Source: Bruno Philippe | Translation: Mike Sklansky (CD Booklet)




Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

♪ Sonata for violin & piano No.9 "Kreutzer", Op.47 (1802-1803), transcription for cello and piano by Carl Czerny (1791-1857)

i. Adagio sostenuto – Presto
ii. Andante con variazioni
iii. Finale. Presto


Franz Schubert (1797-1828)

♪ Nacht und Träume, D.827 (1825)

♪ Der Jüngling und der Tod, D.545 (1817)


♪ Sonata in A minor for Arpeggione and Piano, D.821 (1824)

i. Allegro moderato
ii. Adagio
iii. Allegretto


♪ Ständchen, D.889 (1826)


Bruno Philippe, cello
Tanguy de Williencourt, piano

Recorded on April 1-2 & 4-5, 2017, at La Courroie, Entraigues-sur-la-Sorgue, France

Bruno Philippe plays a fine Tononi cello kindly loaned to him through the Beare's International Violin Society.
Tanguy de Williencourt plays a piano Steinway prepared by Bruno Vincent from Piano Pulsion Avignon.

harmonia mundi 2017

(HD 1080p – Audio video)















Before the advent of radio broadcasts and sound recording, the best way for a composer to disseminate his music was to make arrangements of it for additional types of scoring beyond that of the original. This practice could involve a variety of scenarios ranging from faithful transcriptions to fantasias, variations and most fanciful paraphrases, particularly when the source material was operatic arias. Ludwig van Beethoven – whose every note was penned only after weighty consideration – did not look kindly upon such practices, preferring to exercise iron control over his musical material. Nonetheless he did leave behind a few arrangements of his own compositions, while delegating the task of arranging other of his works to his pupils Carl Czerny and Ferdinand Ries. Notably Ludwig did succumb to the fashion for variations: for the combination of cello and piano alone, he left three sets taking their themes from Handel's Judas Maccabaeus (WoO 45) and Mozart's The Magic Flute (WoO 46 and op.66).

A remarkable virtuoso in his own right, Carl Czerny (in addition to his abundant output of piano etudes) was tasked by Beethoven to prepare piano reductions of several of his compositions, starting with the nine symphonies. It is not known whether the transcriptions of the Kreutzer Sonata were prepared at the composer's request, but one could imagine he sanctioned them. Czerny started with a reduction for piano solo (published in 1837); then around 1822 he made the present version for cello and piano, at the time intended for Josef Lincke, who premiered the Cello Sonatas Nos. 4 and 5. Published by Simrock around 1856, it was promptly forgotten – until its 1990s re-discovery by Dimitry Markevitch, who came across it in a second-hand bookshop and subsequently prepared its first modern-day edition.


Both Beethoven and Czerny commented on the monumental stature and unusual "concertante" character of this work. Composed for the British virtuoso George Bridgetower, who premiered it in May of 1803 with Beethoven at the keyboard, the sonata was eventually dedicated to Rudolf Kreutzer, after George and Ludwig had had a falling out. Although the dedicatee never deigned to perform it and found the music unintelligible, his name lives on thanks to the title of Leo Tolstoy's 1889 novella which became the subject of countless stage and film adaptations and tributes (including a string quartet by Leoš Janáček).


The Sonata's larger-than-life character can be witnessed right from the start in its very opening movement (in the key of A minor), which features three themes and takes impressive liberties: its slow introduction, development section and coda continually break all the rules with their startling harmonic and emotional shifts. The middle movement, in F major, is in the form of a theme with four variations. It serves to relieve the tension generated by the opening, although the writing remains intricate, and it leads right into the galloping Finale, in A major. The adjustments made by Czerny concern the cello part alone in order to accommodate the new instrument's tessitura and tuning.


In his "Arpeggione" Sonata, composed in November of 1824, Franz Schubert follows a tonal progression not unlike that of the Kreutzer Sonata (from A minor to A major). This work is similarly "on loan" from another repertoire: that of the "arpeggione", a kind of bowed guitar invented by the Viennese instrument-maker Johann Georg Stauffer and briefly popular in the 1820s. The Sonata was most likely intended for Schubert's friend Vincenz Schuster, the sole known champion of the arpeggione. Its rapid obsolescence consigned the sonata to oblivion. After the work's publication in 1871, when the vogue for the instrument had long passed, the Sonata was quickly appropriated by viola players and cello players. Here we are far removed from the titanic battles of the Kreutzer Sonatas: instead the soundscape is lyrical and enchanting. As in his violin sonatas, Schubert embraces a showy virtuosity he rarely exhibits elsewhere. With assured mastery he deploys the ample tessitura particular to the six-string arpeggione. Each of the movements sparkles with musical ideas, turning the opening Allegro moderato and especially the closing Allegretto into an exuberant kaleidoscope of colours. The middle movement, the Adagio in E, is filled with his distinctive long-arching phrases which hesitate between major and minor modes; perhaps these fleeting clouds reflect the turmoil felt by the composer, whose mental and physical state was being undermined as a side effect of a treatment for syphilis, in essence a gradual mercury poisoning.


On July 3, 1822, Schubert, aged 25, wrote a short confessional text entitled Mein Traum (My Dream) in which he evoked the wounds he had been nursing since childhood – the rift with his father, the untimely death of his mother. We learn about his hunger for love, about his loneliness, his retreat into nature, about the troubling contiguity between joy and sorrow, between ecstasy and death. So many of these themes find a constant echo in the 600 plus art-songs he composed between 1811 and 1828: "Through long, long years, I sang my songs", he continues in Mein Traum. Yet in his music, Schubert is able to transcend the words he is setting: "But when I wished to sing of love, it turned to sorrow. And when I wanted to sing of sorrow, it turned into love".


The three song transcriptions presented here illustrate this point admirably. Composed in March of 1817 to a text by Joseph von Spaun, Der Jüngling und der Tod (The Young Man and Death) adopts the format of a short dramatic scene which unfolds in twilight tones. The young man of the title seeks liberation in death, and his call is answered with open arms. In the second setting he made of the poem a few days after the first, Schubert adds a weighty marching step to the accompaniment just before Death's final reply; here we are reminded of another "grim reaper", the one from "Death and the Maiden" (and the string quartet, the second movement of which derives from the song melody).


In Nacht und Träume (Night and Dreams), to a text by Matthäus von Collin, the narrator seeks consolation from the night. The outcome seems to be fixed, and resignation must follow: the tempo is very slow ("sehr langsam"), the dynamic marking is "pianissimo"; long vocal phrases float over a rocking accompaniment which hardly varies from beginning to end. In Ständchen (Serenade), to a text by Ludwig Rellstab, the night is an ally: observed only by the moon above, the lover at last finds the courage to ask for his lady's heart. This celebrated song comes from the Schwanengesang (Swan Song), the song cycle assembled from settings Schubert made between August and October 1828 and published after his death.


Source: Claire Delamarche | Translation: Mike Sklansky (CD Booklet)















Bruno Philippe was born in 1993 in Perpignan, France. There, he began studying the cello with Marie-Madeleine Mille and regularly attended Yvan Chiffoleau's masterclasses. In 2008, he pursued his studies at the CRR in Paris in the class of Raphael Pidoux. In 2009 he was unanimously accepted by the Paris National Conservatory of Music and Dance in the class of Jerome Pernoo and joined Claire Desert's chamber music class. Subsequently, he participated in the masterclasses of David Geringas, Steven Isserliss, Gary Hoffman, Pieter Wispelwey and Clemens Hagen at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. Since October 2014, he has been studying as a young soloist at the Kronberg Academy with Frans Helmerson.

In November 2011, he won the third Grand Prix and the Best recital at the André Navarra International Competition. In September 2014, he won the third prize and audience prize at the International Competition of the ARD in Munich. He won a Special Prize at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in June 2015 and the Special Prize in recognition of an outstanding performance at the Grand Prix Emmanuel Feuermann in Berlin in November 2014. In 2015, Bruno Philippe was appointed Révélation Classique of the ADAMI, and in 2016, he won the Prix pour la musique of the Safran Foundation dedicated to cello. In 2017, he is laureate of the prestigious Queen Elizabeth Competition in Brussels.


Bruno Philippe has been invited to appear at the Kammersaal of the Berlin Philharmonia, La Cité de la Musique, the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, Salle Gaveau and Salle Pleyel in Paris, the Halle aux Grains in Toulouse, the Kursaal in Besançon, the Alte Oper in Frankfurt and to play with the Bayerische Rundfunk, the Münchener Kammerorchestrer, the Orchestre Philarmonique de Monte-Cazrlo, or else the Orchestre National du Capitole, Toulouse. He has also performed at the Festival Pablo Casals in Prades, the Festival de Pâques in Aix-en-Provence, La Folle Journée de Nantes, the Rheingau Musik Festival, the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival, the Festival Radio France de Montpellier, at La Roque d'Anthéron, the Amsterdam Cello Biennale, the Mozartfest Würzburg, the Munich BR Studio, Schwetzinger SWR-Festspiele, the Rheingau Musik Festival...


He has also had the chance to play with many renowned musicians: Gary Hoffman, Tabea Zimmermann, Gidon Kremer, Christian Tetzlaff, David Kadouch, Alexandra Conounova, Renaud Capuçon, Jérôme Ducros, Antoine Tamestit, Sarah Nemtanu, Lise Berthaud, Christophe Coin, Jérôme Pernoo, Raphaël Pidoux, Emmanuelle Bertrand, as well as Violoncelles Français or Les Dissonances (David Grimal).


During the next few months, Bruno Philippe can be seen in concertos, above all with the Radio-Sinfonie-Orchester Frankfurt and Orchesterakademy of the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival conducted by Christoph Eschenbach, with the Orchestre Dijon-Bourgogne conducted by Gabor Takacs-Nagy, with the Orchestre de la Garde Républicaine or else the Junges Sinfonieorchester Münster. He will be performing at the Konzerthaus in Berlin, the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, the Alte Oper in Francfort, Salle Cortot in Paris, the Festival de Pâques de Deauville, the Chorégies d'Orange, or else Les Victoires de la Musique Classique at the Auditorium de Radio-France, Paris.


His first album, devoted to Brahms's Sonatas, recorded with the pianist Tanguy de Williencourt for the Evidence Classic label, came out in 2015. In 2017 he joins the label Harmonia Mundi and releases a new album around Beethoven and Schubert's sonatas, with Tanguy de Williencourt.


He was also awarded scholarships from the Safran Foundation for music, the Raynaud-Zurfluh Foundation, the Rheingold Foundation, the AMOPA, the Banque Populaire Foundation, and in August 2014 won the Nicolas Firmenich price at the Verbier Festival. He also received the support of the "Christa Verhein-Stiftung" for his studies at the Kronberg Academy.


Bruno Philippe plays a fine Tononi cello kindly loaned to him through the Beare's International Violin Society.


Source: lagence-management.com















A true Renaissance musician, the French pianist Tanguy de Williencourt (b. 1990) is an accomplished soloist and chamber musician, who is also pursuing studies as a conductor.

After having completed, in 2013, his Master's degrees in piano, accompaniment and vocal coaching with highest honors at the Paris Conservatoire, he entered the prestigious Artist Diploma Programme there, and was admitted to follow Alain Altinoglu's orchestral conducting class. The pianists who have particularly influenced him include Roger Muraro, Jean-Frédéric Neuburger, and Claire Désert.


Besides, advice of Maria João Pires, Christoph Eschenbach and Paul Badura-Skoda particularly impact him.


A recipient in 2014 of the Blüthner Foundation award given annually to one outstanding pianist at the Paris Conservatoire, Tanguy has also been a prize winner at the Yamaha (2008) and Fauré (2013) competitions.


Tanguy's solo and chamber music performances have taken him to the TivoliVredenburg in Utrecht,  Kyoto's Alti Hall in Kyoto, St Peterburg Philharmonic's Great Hall or Berlin Philharmonic's Chamber Music Hall, and to leading French venues including the Folle Journée de Nantes, Chopin à Bagatelle, La Roque d'Anthéron, or else to the French National Radio.


His first record dedicated to Brahms and Schumann with cellist Bruno Philippe was released in 2015.


Source: tanguydewilliencourt.fr















More photos


See also


Johannes Brahms & Robert Schumann: Works for cello and piano – Bruno Philippe, Tanguy de Williencourt (Audio video)

Antonín Dvořák: Cello Concerto in B minor – Bruno Philippe, Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, Stéphane Denève (HD 1080p)


Francis Poulenc: Sonate pour violoncelle et piano – Bruno Philippe, Tanguy de Williencourt (HD 1080p)


Joseph Haydn: Cello Concerto No.1 in C major – Bruno Philippe, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Christoph Eschenbach (HD 1080p)


Friday, March 16, 2018

Sergei Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor – Ilia Papoian, St Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra, Alexander Titov (HD 1080p)














Russian pianist Ilia Papoian performs Sergei Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor, Op.18, with St Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra under Alexander Titov. Recorded at St Petersburg Music House on January 24, 2018.



Rachmaninov composed his Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor in 1900, and played the first complete performance on November 9, 1901, with Alexandre Siloti conducting the Moscow Philharmonic Society.


He suffered a shattering career crisis in the 1897 massacre of his First Symphony in St Petersburg, by its first conductor, Glazunov, who was reportedly disablingly drunk – a fiasco the critics en masse, led by César Cui, laid at the composer's feet like an animal carcass. The audience – ever mindful that Rachmaninov had been expelled in 1885 from the local temple of musical instruction – listened stonily, glad for the failure of a young lion schooled elsewhere (in Moscow, he completed the Conservatory course in 1891, and graduated a year later with highest possible grades). Because of the failure of the Symphony No.1, Rachmaninov began to drink immoderately. Believing himself unfit to compose, he tried concentrating on parallel courses as a concert soloist and opera conductor, but embroiled himself in a love affair that ended very badly. By the end of 1899, he was an alcoholic whose hands shook, imperiling his keyboard career. Between January and April 1900, Sergei Vassilyevich saw Dr. Dahl, a Moscow specialist in "neuropsychotherapy", daily, and was urged under hypnosis to compose the new piano concerto that a London impresario was asking for. Trance therapy roused the composer from his lethargy; indeed, he worked with great facility on an excellent new concerto – the Second, in C minor, Op.18 – dedicated to Dr. Dahl in gratitude. Never again in the remaining four decades of his life was Rachmaninov immobilized by depression, despite several convulsive changes of fortune.


The opening, C minor, movement in sonata form was composed last; structurally it is the most conventional. Ten bars of unaccompanied keyboard chords lead directly to a palpitant principal theme for violins, violas, and clarinets – motivic rather than tuneful, despite a melismatic extension for cellos. An episode links this to the second theme, in E flat, one of Rachmaninov's most celebrated melodies, introduced by the piano. Following the development and a maestoso alla marcia reprise, there's a brilliant coda – but no solo cadenza, yet.


In the E major, Adagio sostenuto movement, after four bars of Tchaikovskian string chords, piano arpeggios introduce a two-part principal theme, played first by the solo flute, then by the solo clarinet. Piano and orchestra develop both parts before a Tchaikovsky-like theme for bassoons nudges the tempo a bit. Further development goes even quicker, culminating in a solo cadenza that's been teasingly postponed, after which the original material returns, soulfully.


The finale is an Allegro scherzando in C major. The strings play a rhythmic figure that builds to a staccato climax. The piano enters with a flourish, setting up the principal subject – again, as before in I, motivic rather than tuneful, but admirably constructed for developing. This is followed by another of Rachmaninov's signature melodies, lushly undulant, sung by the solo oboe and strings. (In the postwar 1940s, this was garnished with words and performed unrelentingly by big-band vandals as Full Moon and Empty Arms). A fugato brings back the principal subject, followed by a Maestoso statement of "The Tune". Accelerating fistfuls of piano chords set up a crowd-rousing conclusion.


Source: Roger Dettmer (allmusic.com)




Sergei Rachmaninov (1873-1943)

♪ Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor, Op.18 (1900-1901)

i. Moderato
ii. Adagio sostenuto
iii. Allegro scherzando


Encore:

Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849)

♪ Nocturne in C sharp minor, Op. posth. (1830)


Ilia Papoian, piano

St Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Alexander Titov

St Petersburg Music House, January 24, 2018

(HD 1080p)















Ilia Papoyan was born in 2001 in St Petersburg and began studying music at the age of seven. From 2009 to 2011 he studied at the Rachmaninov Children's School of Art (Class of Gemma Sedletskaya). In 2011 he entered the special music school of the St Petersburg State Conservatory (Class of Olga Kurnavina and Professor Alexander Sandler).

Ilia is a laureate of many international piano competitions. Among them are the International Chopin Competition in St Petersburg (2nd prize, 2010), the International Competition of Young Pianist dedicated to the Work of '"Fryderyk Chopin" in Narva (1st prize, 2016), the International Bach Competition (2nd prize, 2013), the International Music Competition "Music Anyday" in Moscow (1st prize, 2015), and the X International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Astana, Kazakhstan (2nd prize, 2017). In May 2016 Ilia became the diploma winner of the Grand Piano Competition which took place in Moscow.

Ilia has already performed in various concert halls in St Petersburg: in the Dmitri Shostakovich St Petersburg Academic Philharmonia, in the Small Hall of the Rimsky-Korsakov St Petersburg State Conservatory as well as in the State Academic Capella. Every year he performs with the symphony orchestra on the stage of the State Philharmonia for Children and Youth.

He has participated in master classes with Andrey Diev and Gregory Gruzman. Member of the St Petersburg Music House programs since 2016.

Source: eng.spdm.ru / emcy.org















The Russian conductor Alexander Titov (b. 1954, St Petersburg) studied at the Leningrad State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatoire, where he concentrated on three distinct fields: choral conducting (class of Professor A. Mikhailov) and piano (class of Professor V. Gentsler) graduating in 1976, and operatic-symphonic conducting (in the class of Professor Ilya Musin) graduating in 1981. In 1988 he was a prize-winner of the International Min-On Competition in Tokyo.

In 1976 he began his conducting career as assistant to Gennady Rozhdestvensky and Mstislav Rostropovich, and has since become one of Russia's leading conductors. From 1989 to present he is Conductor of Mariinsky (former Kirov) Opera and Ballet Theatre. He is a regular Guest Conductor with the Mariinsky Theater Orchestra (since 1991), Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra (since 2002), and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (since 1993). In addition, he has worked with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and all he leading St Petersburg symphony orchestras, including the Symphony Orchestra of Saint Petersburg Philharmonia, the St Petersburg Festival Orchestra, the St Petersburg New Classical Orchestra, the St Petersburg Chamber Orchestra "Canon," and the St Petersburg Conservatory Chamber Orchestra.

In 1981 Alexander Titov assumed the post of lecturer in opera and symphonic conducting at the Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory of St Petersburg. In July-August 1990 he participated in Tanglewood International Conductors' Seminar (USA).

Alexander Titov has toured widely, with visits to the USA, UK, Germany, Italy, Holland, Finland, Austria, Portugal, Spain, Japan, China - Hong-Kong, Columbia, Brazil, Latvia, and other countries, and has made appearances in the world's leading opera theatres, such as La Scala, La Fenice, Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden, and San Francisco Opera. He works regularly with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, notably on the orchestra's ground-breaking tour of China in November 2000.

Alexander Titov is the recipient of the Golden Masque Prize (2001), St Petersburg's highest prize in theatrical arts Golden Soffit for the best conductor's work (2002), and the Fortissimo Prize initiated by the St Petersburg Conservatoire (2003). He has recorded over 70 CD's, with a huge and diverse canon drawn from the classical, romantic, and contemporary periods. He has placed particular emphasis on the symphonic, operatic, and ballet repertoires of Russian composers – including Glinka, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Dmitri Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and Schnittke. This interest extends to works of contemporary Russian composers.

Source: bach-cantatas.com















The St Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra was formed in 1967 by Nikolai Rabinovich, Edward Grikurov, and Karl Eliasberg, and until 1985 it was nicknamed the "Orchestra of Ancient and Modern Music", due to its concentration on early music and new works. Led for ten years by Edward Serov, the orchestra toured throughout the Soviet Union and internationally, and performed at many music festivals. In 1985, the ensemble was elevated to state orchestra status, under the leadership of Ravil Martynov. He toured with the orchestra in China, Japan, Germany, Austria, Spain, Finland, Norway, Sweden, France, Belgium, and Mexico. Vasily Petrenko was the chief conductor from 2004 to 2007, followed by Alexander Titov from 2007 to 2013. From 2008 to 2014, the principal guest conductor was Vladimir Lande, who took the orchestra on tour to the United States, Latin America, and South Korea. He was succeeded by Walter Proost in 2014. The orchestra has recorded for Marco Polo and Naxos.

Source: Blair Sanderson (allmusic.com)







































More photos


See also


Sergei Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor – Sergei Redkin, St Petersburg State Capella Symphony Orchestra, Sergei Roldugin (HD 1080p)

Sergei Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor – Yuja Wang, Verbier Festival Orchestra, Yuri Termikanov (HD 1080p)