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Andrew McGregor with Alexandra Coghlan and Sara Mohr-Pietsch

With Andrew McGregor. Building a Library: Vaughan Williams's Dona Nobis Pacem; Sara Mohr-Pietsch discusses recent contemporary releases; Disc of the Week.

with Andrew McGregor

Building a Library: Alexandra Coghlan recommends the best recording of Vaughan Williams's plea for peace, tolerance and understanding written in 1936, his Dona Nobis Pacem. The piece is on a huge scale, scored for soloists, chorus and large orchestra, in six continuous parts, and the phrase Dona nobis pacem "Give us peace" recurs throughout; a theme with perennial relevance.

Andrew is joined by Sara Mohr-Pietsch to discuss a range of recent releases of contemporary repertoire

Andrew chooses an outstanding new release as his Disc of the Week.

3 hours, 12 minutes

Music Played

  • Richard Strauss

    Die Nacht Op. 10

    Performer: Louise Alder. Performer: Joseph Middleton.
    • Through Life and Love.
    • Orchid Classics.
    • 18.
  • Richard Strauss

    Befreit Op. 39 No. 4

    Performer: Louise Alder. Performer: Joseph Middleton.
    • Through Life and Love.
    • Orchid Classics.
    • 19.
  • Donald Swann

    Four Lyrics From In Memoriam Nos. 1 & 2

    Performer: John Mark Ainsley. Performer: Roderick Williams. Performer: Christopher Glynn.
    • Songs by Donald Swann.
    • Hyperion.
    • 15.
  • Simon Laks

    String Quartet No. 5 (1963) iii. Scherzo

    Ensemble: Messages Quartet.
    • Laks: String Quartets.
    • DUX.
    • 10.
  • Sergey Akhunov

    Der Erlkonig for viola and orchestra

    Performer: Maxim Rysanov. Performer: Sinfonietta Rīga.
    • Maxim Rysanov in Schubert's Company.
    • Onyx Classics.
    • 6.
  • Pietro Marchitelli

    Sonata No. 8 for 2 violins and continuo i. & II.

    Performer: Ensemble Aurora. Performer: Enrico Gatti.
    • The Fiery Genius.
    • Arcana.
    • 11.
  • Francesco Geminiani

    Improvisation + Op. 9 Nos 1 & 2

    Performer: Annekatrin Beller. Performer: Torsten Johann. Performer: Thomas C. Boysen.
    • Geminiani: The Art of Playing on the Violin.
    • Aparté.
    • 1.
  • Jan Dismas Zelenka

    Sonata in G minor ZWV 181 No. 2 iii. Andante-Adagio

    Performer: Collegium 1704. Performer: Václav Luks.
    • Zelenka: Sonatas.
    • Accent.
    • 7.
  • Giuseppe Valentini

    Concerto in A minor Op. 7 No. 11 ii. Allegro

    Performer: Collegium Musicum 90. Performer: Simon Standage.
    • Maestro Corelli's Violins.
    • Chandos.
    • 2.
  • Giuseppe Maria Orlandini


    Performer: Ann Hallenberg. Performer: Il Pomo d’Oro. Performer: Stefano Montanari.
    • Carnevale 1729.
    • Pentatone.
    • 3.


Richard Strauss: Through Life and Love

STRAUSS, R: Nichts Op. 10 No. 2; Leises Lied Op. 39 No. 1; Standchen Op. 17 No. 2; Schlagende Herzen Op. 29 No. 2; Heimliche Aufforderung Op. 27 No. 3; Sehnsucht Op. 32 No. 2; Waldseligkeit Op. 49 No. 1; Ach, was Kummer, Qual und Schmerzen Op. 49 No. 8; Breit' uber mein Haupt Op. 19 No. 2; Wie sollten wir geheim sie halten Op. 19 No. 4; Das Rosenband Op. 36 No. 1; Ich Schwebe Op. 48 No. 2; Nachtgang Op. 29 No. 3; Einerlei Op. 69 No. 3; Rote Rosen, AV76; Muttertandelei Op. 43 No. 2; Meinem Kinde Op. 37 No. 3; Die Nacht Op. 10 No. 3; Befreit Op. 39 No. 4; Ruhe, meine Seele! Op. 27 No. 1; Zueignung Op. 10 No. 1; Weihnachtsgefuhl, WoO. 94; Allerseelen Op. 10 No. 8

Louise Alder (soprano), Joseph Middleton (piano)



Donald Swann: Songs

SWANN, D: A collection of songs; Five colourisations of Emily Dickinson; Two sonnets by Edna St Vincent Millay; Stopping by woods; Two poems by Thomas Hardy; Four lyrics from In memoriam; Two poems by Christina Rossetti; Dark rose of my heart; An invite to eternity; The harlot’s house; Six songs to poems by William Blake; Ya vas lyubil 'I loved you once'; She is all harmony, all wonder; Some people's dreams; Marguerite; A red, red rose; It was a lover, and his lass; See, dearest, how the rose; Arcades; We'll go no more a-roving; Longing; Oh, why are the roses so pale?; Old songs of lost love; In the mist; Raiders' dawn; The youth of the heart; He wishes for the cloths of heaven; Bilbo's Last Song

Roderick Williams (baritone), Dame Felicity Lott (soprano), Kathryn Rudge (mezzo), John Mark Ainsley (tenor), Christopher Glynn (piano)



Laks: String Quartets Nos. 3-5

LAKS: String Quartet No. 3; String Quartet No. 4; String Quartet No. 5

Messages Quartet

DUX DUX1286 (CD)


In Schubert's Company

AKHUNOV: In Schubert’s company for viola & orchestra; Der Erlkonig for viola & orchestra

DESYATNIKOV: Wie der Alter Leiermann for violin & orchestra

SCHUBERT: Polonaise in B flat major, D580; Sonata in A minor 'Arpeggione', D821; Symphony No. 5 in B flat major, D485; Sonatina (Sonatina) in G minor, D408 (Op. posth. 137 No. 3); Der Leiermann (No. 24 from Winterreise, D911)

TABAKOVA: Fantasy Homage to Schubert for viola and string orchestra

Riga Sinfonietta, Yakov Katsnelson (piano), Maxim Rysanov (viola/director)



9.30am – Building a Library

Composer: Vaughan Williams
Piece: Dona Nobis Pacem
Reviewer: Alexandra Coghlan

Building a Library: Vaughan Williams' Dona Nobis Pacem

Composer: Vaughan Williams
Piece: Dona Nobis Pacem
Reviewer: Alexandra Coghlan

Recommended recording:

Vaughan Williams: Dona nobis pacem & Toward the Unknown Region

VAUGHAN WILLIAMS: Dona Nobis Pacem; Four Hymns; Toward The Unknown Region; O Clap Your Hands (Psalm 47); Lord, Thou has been our refuge

Judith Howarth (soprano), Sir Thomas Allen (baritone), John Mark Ainsley (tenor), Matthew Souter (viola), Corydon Singers, Corydon Orchestra, Matthew Best (conductor)


Other recommended recordings:

Below is a shortlist of other recordings which Alexandra also liked, although we can’t guarantee the availability of these discs.


Bryn Terfel (baritone), Yvonne Kenny (soprano), Philip Langridge (tenor), London Symphony Orchestra, Chorus, Richard Hickox (conductor)



Sheila Armstrong (Soprano), John Carol Case (Baritone), Christopher Hyde-Smith (Flute), London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Chorus, Orchestra Nova, Philharmonia Orchestra, Adrian Boult (conductor), Malcolm Sargent (conductor)


10.15am – New Releases: Baroque Instrumental

The Fiery Genius

CAILO: Sonata per violino e basso continuo; Sonata a tre violini e organo; Sonata a due violini e cembalo

FIORENZA: Concerto di violini e basso

LEO: Concerto for Four Violins in D major

MARCHITELLI: Sonata VIII per due violini e basso; Sonata II per tre violini e basso

SUPRIANI: Toccata quinta

Ensemble Aurora, Enrico Gatti (violin and director)



Geminiani: The Art of Playing on the Violin

GEMINIANI, F: The Art of Playing on the Violin Op. 9; Violin Sonata Op. 4 No. 8 and No. 6

Gottfried Von Der Goltz (violin), Annekatrin Beller (cello), Torsten Johann (harpsichord), Thomas C. Boysen (theorbo)



ZELENKA: Sonatas a 2 oboi (violino) e 2 bassi obligati, ZWV181

Vaclav Luks (harpsichord), Collegium 1704



Maestro Corelli’s Violins

MONTANARI: Concerto No. 1 in D minor Op. 2; Concerto No. 6 in E flat major Op. 1; Concerto No. 7 in E major Op. 1

MOSSI: Concerto grosso in E minor Op. 4, No. 11; Concerto in G minor Op. 4 No. 12

VALENTINI: Concerto in A minor Op. 7, No. 11

Simon Standage (violin and director), Collegium Musicum 90



10.50am – Sara Mohr-Pietsch on New Releases of Contemporary Music

Flux: New Music – new dance

BOWDEN: Airs No Oceans Keep

FRANCES-HOAD: The Madness Industry

HIGGINS, G: Atomic Cafe

QUINTA: Themistocles is Captured

WHITLEY: Duo for Violin and Viola

Fidelio Trio, Onyx Brass, Rambert Orchestra, Paul Hoskins, Quinta (violin, electronics), Eloisa-Fleur Thom (violin), Asher Zaccardelli (viola)



Bracing Change

DENNEHY: The weather of it

GILBERT, A: Haven of Mysteries

HOLT, SIMON: String Quartet No. 3

Doric String Quartet, Guy Johnston (cello), Carducci String Quartet, JACK Quartet



Hommage a Boulez

BOULEZ: Derive II; Dialogue de L'Ombre Double; Memoriale; Le Marteau sans maitre; Anthemes 2; Messagesquisse

Daniel Barenboim (conductor), Pierre Boulez (conductor), West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, Guy Eshed (flute)

DG 4797160 (2CD)


Lim: How Forest Think & Cassidy: The Wreck of Former Boundaries

CASSIDY: The Wreck of Former Boundaries

LIM: How Forests Think

Elision Ensemble, Wu Wei (37-pipe sheng),Carl Rosman (conductor), Peter Evans, Tristram Williams (trpts), Aaron Cassidy (electronics)




Oliver Coates, cello

FOOM (independent London record label) – FLAC download / vinyl only


MICACHU: Riding Through Drinking Harpo Dine                             

Eliza McCarthy, piano

FOOM (independent London record label) – FLAC download / vinyl only

11.45am – Disc of the Week

Carnevale 1729

ALBINONI: Il tuo core in dono accetto (from Filandro); Fior ch'a spuntar si vede (from Filandro)

GIACOMELLI: Mi par sentir la bella (from Gianguir); Vanne, si, di al, mio diletto (from Gianguir)

LEO: Soffre talor del vento (from Catone in Utica); Ombra cara, ombra adorata (from Catone in Utica)

ORLANDINI: Non sempre invendicata (from Adelaide); Quanto bello agl'occhi miei (from Adelaide); Scherza in mar la navicella (from Adelaide); Vedro piu liete e belle (from Adelaide)

PORPORA: Il pastor se torna aprile (from Semiramide riconosciuta); In braccio a mille furie (from Semiramide riconosciuta); Bel piacer saria d'un core (from Semiramide riconosciuta)

VINCI, LEONARDO: Nave altera che in mezzo all'onde (from L'abbandono di Armida)

Ann Hallenberg (mezzo-soprano), Il Pomo d'Oro, Stefano Montanari

PENTATONE PTC5186678 (2Hybrid SACD)


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