Classical New Releases

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Classical IPR regularly features new releases that we think our listeners will enjoy. Stay up to date on the latest classical albums of interest. 

Dmitri Shostakovich composed the score to the Soviet film “The Gadfly” in 1955. The complete score to the film has just been released for the first time.

 

Swedish composer and pianist Benny Andersson is best known as a co-founder of the band ABBA. He also wrote music for the musicals "Chess," "Kristina från Duvemåla" and "Mamma Mia!" 

Andersson has a new album out on Deutsche Grammophon featuring 21 of his songs. He arranged and performed the music on solo piano. The music includes ABBA hits, songs from his musicals and several original compositions. 

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine has just released her 36th album. She pairs violin concertos by Max Bruch and Sir Edward Elgar. These two pieces are the shortest (the Bruch is about 20 minutes) and longest (the Elgar is about 50 minutes) of violin concertos in the standard repertoire. 

What the world needs now is another cat video. Seriously.

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American pianist Byron Janis has been a powerhouse since 1942, when he played Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 with conductor Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Orchestra. Janis was just fifteen years old.

The following year, Vladimir Horowitz accepted Janis as his very first piano student. Janis would go on to play with some of the greatest conductors and orchestras of the twentieth century, including Fritz Reiner, Antal Dorati, Kirill Kondrashin and Charles Munch.

 American pianist Byron Janis has performed with some of the greatest conductors of the twentieth century, including Arturo Toscanini, Eugene Ormandy and Fritz Reiner. He was also the first piano student (and one of only three total) that Vladimir Horowitz ever accepted. At the age of 89, Janis is releasing not one but three new albums.

 

 Soprano Pretty Yende grew up in a small town 200 miles from Johannesburg, South Africa. After hearing the famous “Flower Duet” by Leo Delibes in a television commercial, Yende decided to become an opera singer.

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2017 was an exciting year for new albums in classical music. There were world premieres of pieces by Bartok, Puccini and Vaughan Williams. There were also lots of anniversaries celebrated in music, from the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation to the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Emerson String Quartet.  

Join Classical IPR's Amanda Sewell for a look at some notable classical music releases from 2017. This program airs Wednesday December 27 at 5 p.m. with an encore presentation on Monday January 1 at 1 p.m.

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  Ola Gjeilo is one of the most in-demand composers alive today. He’s not even 40 and has already had his music performed by major ensembles including the Choir of King’s College Cambridge and the Phoenix Chorale. His newest album is called Winter Songs, and it features original compositions and his new arrangements of some Christmas favorites.

  A new album from Decca features winter-themed music by the Norwegian-born American composer Ola Gjeilo. Gjeilo himself is at the piano for every piece, and her performs with 12 Ensemble and the Choir of Royal Holloway, conducted by Rupert Gough.

 

The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist established their community more than 20 years ago in Ann Arbor, Mich. where music is a daily part of the Catholic nuns' lives in the Motherhouse. With the holiday season looming, the sisters joined NPR's Scott Simon for an in-studio performance and discussion of their latest album, Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring: Christmas with The Dominican Sisters of Mary.

Photo by Marshall Clarke

Cellist Amit Peled actually encourages his students to join a gang - the Peabody Cello Gang.

Peled spoke with Classical IPR about how the Cello Gang got started, which piece on their new album is the “Everest” for cellists and the story behind the album’s cover photo. He also talked about the once-in-a-lifetime live performance of David Popper’s Requiem featuring nineteen cellos that appears on the new album.

 

If you’re a top cellist at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, you’re probably in a gang. A cello gang, that is. Amit Peled calls the students in his studio the Peabody Cello Gang, and they have a new album.

 

Classical music has never lived in a bubble. For centuries, it's always found common ground with folk music.

Enter, the Danish String Quartet.

 Violinist Angèle Dubeau and her orchestra La Pietà have recorded musical portraits of many composers, including Philip Glass, Ludovico Einaudi and John Adams. Their latest musical portrait album features selected works of Max Richter.

 

Richard Reed Parry plays to arenas full of fans as a member of the Grammy-winning band Arcade Fire, but he impressed listeners in 2014 with a more intimate record. Parry's Music For Heart And Breath featured compositions that asked some of the best musicians in contemporary classical music to use their own heartbeats and breathing to guide their performances.

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