Saturday, 3 July 2010

Naxos Notes

July releases include Mendelssohn's complete incidental music to A Midsummer Night's Dream, with spoken text and melodramas in English. However, it might be in a New Zealand accent, as it's the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra conducted by James Judd. Whatever your feelings about antipodean pronunciation of the Mother Tongue, the music is wonderful !

Ian Burnside, recently removed from Radio 3 in suspicious circumstances, accompnaies Roderick Williams in a disc of Songs by George Butterworth, a wonderful composer cut down in his prime in the First World War. Another English composer who deserves to be better-known is Cyril Scott, and his three sonatas for Violin and piano make up an enjoyable disc from Clare Howick and Sophie Rahman.

Other rarities to emerge this months include Cimarosa's Requiem, Casella's Second Symphony, Franz Schmidt's third, and Havergal Brian's Eleventh and Fifteenth. Piano music on disc from Ferdinand Ries (Beethoven's student and assistant), Anton Rubinstein, and finally, one of Arensky's Piano Pieces and Etudes.

Lovers of the Clarinet will be pleased to see a coupling of Copland's Concerto (one of my faves) with a Concerto by Robert Aldridge, of whom I for one, have never heard, but it's said to be "a direct descendant of the Copland". If it has anything approaching the haunting, magical atmospher of the Copland, it'll be a treat !

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