Main content
Sorry, this episode is not currently available

Andrew McGregor with William Mival

A round-up of the best 2018 new classical releases, and in Building a Library William Mival picks a favourite recording of Richard Strauss's orchestral showpiece Till Eulenspiegel.

Throughout today's programme Andrew McGregor is joined by Record Review regulars Katy Hamilton, Jeremy Sams, Harriet Smith to hear them round up and play their top recordings of 2018.

09.30
Building a Library: William Mival picks a personal favourite from among the recordings of Richard Strauss's Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche (Till Eulenspiegel's Merry Pranks).

In an exhilarating tour de force of orchestral writing and musical form, Strauss's 1895 symphonic poem depicts the exploits of the 14th century Till Eulenspiegel. Rascally, foolish and mischievous, courageous and scornful, Till rampages through medieval German society, leaving destruction and outrage in his wake as he confronts and exposes pomposity and hypocrisy. By identifying himself through musical brilliance as an anarchic devil-may-care hero, Strauss was at least in part giving the finger to the musical establishment after the critical dubbing of his recently premiered first opera Guntram. Late in life, Strauss said of Till 'I just wanted to give the people in the concert hall a good laugh for once.' Or was that, too, just another prank...?

3 hours, 13 minutes

Music Played

  • Antonio Vivaldi

    Concerto No. 3 'Autumn' Op.8 No.2: III. Allegro

    Performer: Rachel Podger. Ensemble: Brecon Baroque.
    • Channel Classics.
  • John Christopher Smith

    'It comes! It comes! It must be death!'

    Singer: Ruby Hughes. Orchestra: Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Conductor: Laurence Cummings.
    • Chandos.
  • John Adams

    Doctor Atomic: Act 1. 'Am I in your light?'

    Singer: Julia Bullock. Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: John Adams.
    • Nonesuch.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Piano Concerto No.4 in G minor, Op.40: I. Allegro vivace (Alla breve)

    Performer: Daniil Trifonov. Orchestra: The Philadelphia Orchestra. Conductor: Yannick Nézet‐Séguin.
    • DG.
  • Joseph Haydn

    Piano Trio in C Major, Hob. XV:21: II. Molto andante

    Ensemble: Trio Wanderer.
    • Haydn: Piano Trios, HOB. XV:14, 18, 21, 26 & 31.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 8.
  • Joseph Haydn

    Piano Trio in E-Flat Minor, Hob. XV:27: II. Allegro [Jacob's Dream]

    Ensemble: Trio Wanderer.
    • Haydn: Piano Trios, HOB. XV:14, 18, 21, 26 & 31.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 14.
  • William Cornysh

    Ave Maria mater Dei

    Choir: The Sixteen. Conductor: Harry Christophers.
    • Coro.
  • Philip Cooke

    Ave Maria, mater Dei

    Choir: The Sixteen. Conductor: Harry Christophers. Singer: Emilia Morton. Singer: Julie Cooper.
    • Coro.
  • Frédéric Chopin

    Cello Sonata in G minor, Op. 65: II. Scherzo

    Performer: Dénes Várjon. Performer: Steven Isserlis.
    • Hyperion.
  • Franz Schubert

    Arpeggione Sonata in A minor, D821: I. Allegro moderato

    Performer: Steven Isserlis. Performer: Dénes Várjon.
    • Hyperion.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Acis and Galatea: Act I. 'Oh, the pleasure of the plains!

    Ensemble: Early Opera Company. Conductor: Christian Curnyn.
    • Chandos.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Acis and Galatea: Act II. 'Wretched Lovers! Fate Has Past'

    Singer: Neal Davies. Ensemble: Early Opera Company. Conductor: Christian Curnyn.
    • Chandos.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    Prelude and Fughetta in G major, BWV902: Prelude

    Performer: Víkingur Ólafsson.
    • DG.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    Chorale Prelude, BWV734 'Nun freut euch, lieben Christen g'mein'

    Performer: Víkingur Ólafsson.
    • DG.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    'Widerstehe doch der Sünde, BWV54 (transcribed Ólafsson)

    Performer: Víkingur Ólafsson.
    • DG.
  • Ruth Gipps

    Symphony No.2 in B major, Op. 30: IX. Tempo di Marcia; X. Adagio

    Conductor: Rumon Gamba. Orchestra: BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
    • Chandos.
  • Ruth Gipps

    Symphony No.4, Op.61: I.Moderato - Allegro molto

    Orchestra: BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Conductor: Rumon Gamba.
    • Chandos.

Record Review

9.00am – Best of 2018 with Harriet Smith, Katy Hamilton & Jeremy Sams – Part 1

Vivaldi: Four Seasons; Il riposo per il Santissimo Natale; L’amoroso & Il grosso mogul
Rachel Podger (violin)
Brecon Baroque (ensemble)
With:
Johannes Pramsohler (violin)
Sabine Stoffer (violin)
Jane Rogers (viola)
Alison McGillivray (violoncello)
Jan Spencer (violone)
Daniele Caminiti (theorbo)
Marcin Swiatkiewicz (harpsichord / Chamber organ)
Channel Classics CCS SA 40318 (Hybrid SACD)
https://www.channelclassics.com/catalogue/40318-Vivaldi-Le-Quattro-Stagioni-The-Four-Seasons/

‘Handel’s Last Prima Donna / Giulia Frasi in London’ – operatic arias for soprano by Handel, Ciampi, Arne, John C. Smith & Hayes
Ruby Hughes (soprano)
Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
Laurence Cummings (conductor)
CHANDOS Chaconne CHSA0403 (Hybrid SACD)
https://www.chandos.net/products/catalogue/CHSA%200403

John Adams: Doctor Atomic
Gerald Finley (Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer)
Brindley Sherratt (Edward Teller)
Andrew Staples (Robert Wilson)
Julia Bullock (Kitty Oppenheimer)
Jennifer Johnston (Pasqualita)
Aubrey Allicock (General Leslie Groves)
Marcus Farnsworth (Frank Hubbard)
Samuel Sakker (Captain James Nolan)
BBC Singers
BBC Symphony Orchestra
John Adams (conductor)
Nonesuch 7559793107 (2 CDs)
https://www.nonesuch.com/albums/doctor-atomic

‘Destination Rachmaninov, Departure’ – Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto Nos. 2 & 4 + JS Bach: Partita for Violin Solo No.3 in E Major arr. Piano by Rachmaninov
Daniil Trifonov (piano)
Philadelphia Orchestra
Yannick Nézet-Séguin (conductor)
DG 4835335
https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/gb/cat/4835335

 

9.30am – Building a Library – William Mival on R. Strauss’s Till Eulenspiegel’s lustige Streiche

Composer: Richard Strauss
Reviewer: William Mival

Recommended Recording:

Staatskapelle Dresden
Rudolf Kempe (conductor)
Warner Classics 5747562 (download)
Warner Classics 4317802 (9 CD  Box Set)

Other Recommended Recording:

Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra
David Zinman
Arte Nova 74321870712

Budapest Festival Orchestra
Ivan Fischer
Hungaroton HCD12899

Cleveland Orchestra
George Szell
Sony Classical SBK48272

10.20am – Best of 2018 with Harriet Smith, Katy Hamilton & Jeremy Sams – Part 2

Haydn: Piano Trios Hob.XV:21 in A flat major, XV:18 in A major, XV:21 in C major, XV:26 in F sharp major, XV:31 in E flat minor
Trio Wanderer
Harmonia Mundi HMM902321
http://www.harmoniamundi.com/#!/albums/2329

‘Star of Heavem – The Eton Choirbook Legacy’: Choral music by Cooke, Cornysh, Galvani, Hough, Lambe, MacMillan, Phibbs & Wylkynson
The Sixteen
Harry Christophers (conductor)
Coro COR16166
https://thesixteenshop.com/products/cor16166

Chopin: Cello Sonata & Schubert: Arpeggione Sonata
Steven Isserlis (cello)
Dénes Várjon (piano)
Hyperion CDA68227
https://www.hyperion-records.co.uk/dc.asp?dc=D_CDA68227

Handel: Acis and Galatea
Lucy Crowe (Galatea)
Allan Clayton (Acis)
Benjamin Hulett (Damon)
Neal Davies (Polyphemus)
Jeremy Budd (Coridon)
Rowan Pierce (Chorus)
Early Opera Company
Christian Curnyn (conductor)
Chandos CHSA 0404 (2 hybrid SACDs)
https://www.chandos.net/products/catalogue/CHSA%200404

Solo piano works and transcriptions by JS Bach
Víkingur Ólafsson (piano)
DG 4835022
https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/gb/cat/4835022

Ruth Gipps: Symphonies Nos. 2 & 4, Song for Orchestra & Knight in Armour
BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Rumon Gamba (conductor)
Chandos CHAN20078
https://www.chandos.net/products/catalogue/CHAN%2020078

Broadcast

Why the music we love as teens stays with us for life

Why the music we love as teens stays with us for life

Cognitive neuropyschology can explain why we return to old favourites again and again.

CD Review

CD Review

Find all episodes before 2016