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Andrew McGregor with Tom Service and Erik Levi

The best new classical releases, plus Tom Service picks a favourite recording of Brahms's Piano Concerto No 2 and Erik Levi reviews Wilhelm Furtwangler's wartime Berlin recordings.

with Andrew McGregor

09.30
Building a Library: Tom Service picks a personal favourite from among the recordings of Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major, Op. 83.

At once majestic and virtuosic, introspective and symphonic, Brahms teasingly described his near hour-long, four-movement concerto as a 'tiny, tiny piano concerto with a tiny, tiny wisp of a scherzo.' It's an endlessly recorded staple of the repertoire, a challenge to soloist, conductor and orchestra alike.

10.50
Erik Levi sifts through 'Wilhelm Furtwängler: The Radio Recordings 1939-1945'. The 22-CD set, issued by the Berlin Philharmonic, the orchestra Furtwängler had led since 1922, includes symphonies and concertos by Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner and Schubert, plus works by the legendary conductor himself.

11.45
Andrew chooses an outstanding new release as his Disc of the Week.

3 hours, 13 minutes

Music Played

  • Jacques Offenbach

    Valse Tyrolienne (Un mari à la porte)

    Singer: Jodie Devos. Orchestra: Münchner Rundfunkorchester. Conductor: Laurent Campellone.
    • Alpha.
  • Joseph Haydn

    String Quartet in D, Op.71 No.2: IV. Allegretto

    Ensemble: Maxwell String Quartet.
    • Linn.
  • James Scott Skinner

    The Rosebud of Allenvale

    Music Arranger: Maxwell String Quartet. Ensemble: Maxwell String Quartet.
    • Linn.
  • George Smith

    Guardswell and Truly

    Music Arranger: Maxwell String Quartet. Ensemble: Maxwell String Quartet.
    • Linn.
  • James Scott Skinner

    The Hurricane

    Music Arranger: Maxwell String Quartet. Ensemble: Maxwell String Quartet.
    • Linn.
  • Sebastián de Vivanco

    Veni, dilecte mi

    Choir: ORA Singers. Conductor: Suzi Digby.
    • Desires.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 11.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    Sinfonia in D Major, BWV 1045

    Orchestra: Academy for Ancient Music Berlin. Conductor: Bernhard Forck.
    • J.S. Bach: Violin Concertos.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 18.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    Himmelskönig, sei willkommen, BWV 182: I. Sonata. Grave. Adagio

    Orchestra: Academy for Ancient Music Berlin. Conductor: Bernhard Forck.
    • J.S. Bach: Violin Concertos.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 14.
  • Esa‐Pekka Salonen

    Cello Concerto: II

    Performer: Yo‐Yo Ma. Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic. Conductor: Esa‐Pekka Salonen.
    • Sony.
  • Thomas Haigh

    Fantaisie for the piano forte

    Composer: Joseph Haydn. Performer: Rebecca Maurer.
    • Genuin.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Symphony No.1 in D minor, Op.13: IV. Allegro con fuoco

    Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Vladimir Jurowski.
    • LPO Live.
  • Maurice Ravel

    Daphnis et Chloé (Lever du Jour)

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Symphony No.4 in E minor: IV. Allegro energico e passionato

    Performer: Wilhelm Furtwängler. Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Violin Concerto in D major: I.Allegro ma non troppo

    Performer: Erich Röhn. Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Richard Strauss

    Don Juan

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Franz Schubert

    Symphony No.8 in C major, D 944 "The Great": II. Andante con moto

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Anton Bruckner

    Symphony No.5: IV. Finale

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler.
    • Berliner Philharmoniker.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    String Quartet No. 2 in G Major, Op. 18, No. 2: I. Allegro

    Ensemble: Casals Quartet.
    • Beethoven : Revelations, 1.
    • harmonia mundi.
    • 1.

Record Review

9.00am


‘French Music for Ballet’ – Sauget: Les Forains; Massenet: Ballet suite from Hérodiade; Ibert: Les Amours de Jupiter
Estonian National Symphony Orchestra
Neeme Järvi (conductor)
Chandos CHAN20132
https://www.chandos.net/products/catalogue/CHAN%2020132

‘Colorature’ – Coloratura arias by Offenbach
Jodie Devos (soprano)
Münchner Rundfunkorchester
Laurent Campellone (conductor)
Alpha 437
https://outhere-music.com/en/albums/colorature-alpha437/tracks

Haydn: String Quartets Op.71 + Scottish folk music by Fraser, Gow, Skinner, Smith & MacGregor arranged for string quartet
Maxwell Quartet
Linn CKD 602
https://www.linnrecords.com/recording-haydn-string-quartets-op-71

‘Desires’ – Choral music setting the words of the Song of Songs by Brumel, Clemens, Gabriel, Ceballos, White, Grier, Gombert, Victoria, Dove, Vivanco, Palestrina, Esquivel & J. Barber
ORA Singers
Suzy Digby (conductor)
Harmonia Mundi HMM 905316
http://www.harmoniamundi.com/#!/albums/2505

9.30am – Building a Library – Tom Service on Brahms’s Piano Concerto No.2

Composer: Johannes Brahms

Reviewer: Tom Service

Recommended Recording:

Krystian Zimerman (piano)
Wiener Philharmoniker
Leonard Bernstein (conductor)
DG E4153592

Other Recommended Recordings:

Artur Schnabel (piano)
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Adrian Boult (conductor)
Naxos 8110665

Stephen Kovacevich (piano)
London Symphony Orchestra
Colin Davis (conductor)
Philips 4421092

Maurizio Pollini (piano)
Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Claudio Abbado (conductor)
DG 4194712

Artur Rubinstein (piano)
RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra
Josef Krips (conductor)
RCA 09026614422

 

10.20am – New Releases

Bach: Violin Concertos BWV 1052R, 1042, 1060R, 1056R, 1041 & 1043 + Trio Sonatas BWV 529 & 527, Overture No.2 BWV 1067 & Sinfonia BWV 1045
Isabelle Faust (violin)
Bernhard Forck (violin & direction)
Xenia Loffler (oboe and recorder)
Jan Freiheit (cello)
Raphael Alpermann (harpsichord)
Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin
Harmonia Mundi HMM902335.36 (2 CDs)
http://www.harmoniamundi.com/#!/albums/2506

Salonen: Cello Concerto
Yo-Yo Ma (cello)
Los Angeles Philharmonic
Esa-Pekka Salonen (conductor)
Sony 19075928482

‘Joseph Haydn and his London Disciples’ – Haydn: Sonatas Hob.XVI:50 & XVI:52; Haigh: Three Canconettas for Pianoforte after Haydn, Fantaisie for the Pianoforte & Sonata II in B-flat major for the Pianoforte; Latrobe: Three Sonatas for the Pianoforte, Op.3
Rebecca Maurer (fortepiano & harpsichord)
Genuin Classics GEN 19650
http://www.genuin.de/en/04_d.php?k=499

Rachmaninoff: The Isle of the Dead & Symphony No.1 in D minor
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Vladimir Jurowski (conductor)
LPO Live LPO-0111
https://www.lpo.org.uk/recordings-and-gifts/5409-cd-rachmaninoff-the-isle-of-the-dead.html

10.50am – New Releases with Erik Levi

Wilhelm Furtwängler: The Radio Recordings 1939–1945
Berliner Philharmoniker BPHR180181 (22 SACDs + download code & 184 page booklet)
https://www.berliner-philharmoniker-recordings.com/radio-recordings.html

11.45am – Disc of the Week

‘Revelations: Complete Beethoven String Quartets, Vol.2’ – Beethoven: String Quartets Nos.2, 8, 9, 10 & 15
Cuarteto Casals
Harmonia Mundi HMM 902403.05 (3 CDs)
http://www.harmoniamundi.com/#!/albums/2507

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