Welcome to "For the Record," Violinist.com's weekly roundup of new releases of recordings by violinists, violists, cellists and other classical musicians. We hope it helps you keep track of your favorite artists, as well as find some new ones to add to your listening!
Here is an original and beautiful version of the Butterfly Lover's Concerto - Joshua Bell plays is it in an adaptation that features an ensemble of traditional Chinese instruments. "I'm thrilled to have worked with the incredible Singapore Chinese Orchestra and Maestro Tsung Yeh on this recording," Bell said. "It was a joy to collaborate with the SCO musicians, who brought this work to life through the expressive sounds of the traditional Chinese instruments." The concerto was originally written in 1959 by Chen Gang and He Zhanhao, inspired by a romantic Chinese legend, and scored for a full Western symphonic orchestra. This version with traditional instruments was arranged by Yang Hui Chang and Ku Lap-Man. The recording also includes Sarasate’s "Ziguenerweisen," Saint-Saëns’ Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso; and Massenet’s "Méditation" from Thaïs. "As an American, I feel so privileged to have been given this opportunity," said Bell, "and I find it fitting that we have recorded this in Singapore, a historically important setting that bridges East and West." BELOW: Bell talks about the project, with musical excerpts.
Composed in 1915, Karol Szymanowski’s "Mythes" is a three-movement work consisting of miniature tone poems based on Greek mythology. Late romantic and impressionist in style, the composer’s travels to Sicily and North Africa without doubt influenced the exotic and sumptuous sound world he created in this work. "Mythes" is the opening work on this eclectic recital album from James Ehnes and Andrew Armstrong. Also on this program is Handel’s D major violin sonata – a staple of the violin repertoire. The album concludes with a selection of short miniatures and encores. Below: I. La fontaine d'Arethuse from Szymanowski’s "Mythes":
In its liner notes, the Aizuri Quartet describes its latest album: "'Earthdrawn Skies' explores deep connections between humankind and the natural world through the distinct lenses of four composers forging personal relationships with the soil and the stars." The album includes "Columba aspexit" by Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179); String Quartet No. 1 by Eleanor Alberga (b. 1949); Armenian Folk Songs by Komitas Vardapet (1869-1935); and String Quartet in D Minor, Op. 56 "Voces Intimae" by Jean Sibelius (1865-1957). BELOW: Hildegard von Bingen: "Columba aspexit," arranged by Alex Fortes:
If you have a new recording you would like us to consider for inclusion in our "For the Record" feature, please e-mail Editor Laurie Niles. Be sure to include the name of your album, a link to it and a short description of what it includes.
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