Opera lies at the heart of Rimsky-Korsakov’s colourful idiom, but performances are few and far between; this realisation of his penultimate and grandest stage work is a very rare and special experience. Kitezh is known as ‘the Russian Parsifal’, which encapsulates its mystical flavour and steady unfolding of a legend of redemption. A largely Russian cast (headed by the stunning Svetlana Ignatovich) and production team works within a set that moves from opulent naturalistic scenery to some startling theatrical coups worthy of Rimsky’s underrated dramatic instincts.
In 1973 ging Rodelinda in het Holland Festival met de wereldberoemde coloratuursopraan Joan Sutherland in de titelrol, begeleid door het Nederlands Kamerorkest onder leiding van Richard Bonynge. De voorstelling werd met superieure en spectaculaire virtuositeit gezongen. De decors van ragfijne hekwerken met klassicistische elementen en uitbundig barokke versieringen daalden uit de hemel en stegen weer op zonder de grond te hebben geraakt.
Dutch composers from the beginning of the Baroque period are introduced by modern Dutch classical musicians: Trio de l'Oustal & Lucia Swarts.
The Japanese lutenist Toyohiko Satoh (佐藤豊彦) is one of the most influential lute players of the last century. Born in 1943, he is now looking back on a career of over 40 years of lute playing, including 35 years teaching as a professor for lute at the Royal Conservatory of Den Haag, the Netherlands. Besides being a performer, he is also composing music for chamber ensembles and solo lute, as well as researching and writing about music.
Some of Janacek's most characteristic invention is to be found in the many choruses he wrote for local choirs who were moved by both a love of singing together and a demonstration of their national identity. There is a good selection here. Even the earliest, a touching little lament for a duck, has a quirkiness which saves it from sentimentality; the latest, the Nursery Rhymes, are marvellous little inventions from the dazzling evening of Janacek's life. One must resist any temptation to say that they take Stravinsky on at his own game: Janacek is his own man. In between comes a varied diet here. Schoolmaster Halfar (or Cantor Halfar) is set with a dazzling range of little musical ironies as the story unfolds of the teacher who ruined his life by insisting on speaking Czech. The Elegy on the death of his daughter Olga goes some way toward dignifying a conventional text with some heartfelt music, but the pressure of grief has not drawn the greatest of his music from him: perhaps more time was needed, and indeed the piano pieces he entitled Along an Overgrown Path re-enter ancient griefs more expressively.
This album collects instrumental, vocal, and chamber music by "six women composers from The Netherlands", to quote its subtitle directly. These works cover a span of about 160 years, and are presented in the chronological order of the composers' birth years. This CD is yet another example of how the now-sadly-defunct NM Classics label served the music of its country so well. This album comes recommended to those interested in Dutch music, and music by female composers.
This disc contains all of Dukas' orchestral music except for the early Polyeucte Overture. One of the most self-critical composers that ever lived, Dukas literally wrote one of everything–one symphonic poem, one symphony, one piano sonata, one variation set, one opera, one overture, and one ballet. Along with a few other small things, that's it. Naturally, everything that he let survive is of very high quality, but ironically only one work– The Sorcerer's Apprentice–has become popular, and that amazingly so, ever since Mickey Mouse played the part of the apprentice in Fantasia. If you enjoy that piece, you may want to give some of the other works a try, and here's the best way.