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. 

There's a stunning project by a handful of music's current big-thinkers: composer Nico Muhly, songwriter and singer Sufjan Stevens and guitarist-composer Bryce Dessner of The National. The trio, along with percussionist James McAlister, have created Planetarium, an existential song cycle that confronts both the heavens and the human condition in a marriage of hypnotic sound and song.

 “Lucrezia Borgia’s Daughter,” a new release from the Obsidian label, features motets that would have been composed and performed at the convent of Corpus Domini in Ferrara during the sixteenth century.

rachelbartonpine.com

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine just released her 35th album, "Bel canto Paganini." The centerpiece of the album is the 24 caprices for solo violin by Niccolo Paganini. Pine chatted with IPR's Amanda Sewell about the new album, what 19th-century opera composers thought about Paganini's music, and why Pine's young daughter is one of the only people who gets to hear her sing. Hear the entire conversation in the clip below.

Classical IPR’s New Release of the Week is the 35th album by violinist Rachel Barton Pine. The centerpiece of the album, “Bel Canto Paganini,” is Pine’s performance of Niccolò Paganini’s 24 caprices for solo violin.

 

If the word "aura" is defined as a pervasive atmosphere, then it's a perfect title for this piece by Anna Thorvaldsdottir, who has a knack for creating vivid sonic environments.

  “Final Thoughts” is the newest release from Cedille Records. It features Jorge Federico Osorio performing the final solo piano works of Franz Schubert (1797-1828) and Johannes Brahms (1833-1897). A trailer for “Final Thoughts” can be viewed here.

 

  Sony Classical brings a new collection nearly 90 years in the making. “Arturo Toscanini: The Essential Recordings” is a 20-disc collection over a thousand minutes in length that celebrates the work of conductor Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957). The recordings in this collection were made for the RCA Victor label between 1929 and 1952. This compilation celebrates Toscanini’s 150th birthday and his over seven decades on the podium.

 

  Pentatone offers a new recording of three of Franz Joseph Haydn’s symphonies, numbers 53, 64 and 96.

 

  Pianist Mark Bebbington and the Somm label present The Piano Music of Ralph Vaughan Williams, a complete collection of Vaughan Williams’s compositions for solo and duo piano. Romanian-Nigerian pianist Rebeca Omordia joins Bebbington for the album’s two duo-piano selections.

 

Sir Arthur Sullivan is best-known for his full-length operettas composed with W.S. Gilbert, including “H.M.S. Pinafore” and “The Pirates of Penzance.” Sullivan’s prolific output also includes oratorios, ballets, incidental music and dozens of songs and hymns.

This year, Chandos released a new record celebrating Sullivan’s vast songbook. “Arthur Sullivan - Songs” brings together four of England’s rising classical music artists for an album of these rarely-performed pieces.

Violinist Daniel Hope’s new album, “For Seasons,” is inspired by the perennial Vivaldi concerto cycle known as The Four Seasons. Hope began learning the Vivaldi concertos at age seven, performing them live for the first time only six years later.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page.

  Jeannette Sorrell and Apollo’s Fire bring us a new performance of J. S. Bach’s classic oratorio, St. John Passion. Apollo’s Fire performed the oratorio in March as a live theatrical performance in both Apollo’s Fire’s native Cleveland and New York City; now, the ensemble offers the performance as a two-disc album with accompanying photos and online resources.

 

  Legendary pianist Menahem Pressler joins forces with the Pacifica Quartet on the new album Brahms Piano Quintet/ Schumann String Quartet No. 1.

 

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