From Naxos: “New releases from Classical Independent Labels”

From Naxos

DONIZETTI, G.: Messa da Requiem
Remigio • Amarù • Gatell • Concetti • Montanari • Donizetti Opera Choir and Orchestra • Rovaris
Dynamic CDS7813

Composed in 1835 to mark the death of Vincenzo Bellini, Donizetti’s Requiem received this 2017 performance to mark the 220th anniversary of the composer’s birth. It is the only modern recording currently available and was made at the 2017 Donizetti Festival in a production by Italy’s Fondazione Donizetti. This release, conducted by Corrado Rovaris, was recorded in the Church of Santa Maria Maggiore in Bergamo, where Donizetti is now buried. The whole cast received very positive reviews, especially tenor Juan Francisco Gatell who sung the famous Ingemisco aria with an excellent use of mezzevoci and coloratura.

Inspired by Classics – BRAHMS, J. • SARASATE, P. • LISZT, F. • BARTÓK, B. • KODALY, Z.
Czech Philharmonic Cimbalom Ensemble
ArcoDiva UP0208

The Czech Philharmonic Cimbalom Ensemble originated from a group of orchestra members who share passion for traditional music. The ensemble explores and presents the unique approach of every composer and fuses it with new ideas. This recording includes the ensemble’s arrangements of Brahms’ Hungarian Dances, Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies, Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances, Kodály’s Dances of Galánta, and Sarasate’s Zigeunerweisen. Apart from the exquisite performance of technically demanding compositions, the most appealing element of the Czech Philharmonic Cimbalom Ensemble is their deep understanding of folk music and its specific energy which stems out from the very substance of human existence.

TCHAIKOVSKY, P.I.: Iolanta [Opera] • The Nutcracker [Ballet] (Paris National Opera and Ballet, 2016)
Yoncheva • Rutkowski • Barbeau • Bullion • Paris National Opera Ballet and Orchestra • Altinoglu
BelAir Classiques BAC145

Bringing together again, for the first time since their premiere, Tchaikovsky’s opera Iolanta and ballet The Nutcracker, was the audacious challenge that Russian stage director Dmitri Tcherniakov accepted for the Palais Garnier in Paris in March 2016: a revolutionary production, which was to become one of the key events of the Paris Opera season. Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva delivers a flamboyant interpretation of the blind princess Iolanta and shares the stage with Polish tenor Arnold Rutkowski and Ukrainian bass Alexander Tsymbalyuk. The internationally renowned French conductor Alain Altinoglu joins forces with the Paris Opera Orchestra and Chorus, while the Paris Opera Ballet revives the most popular ballet of all time.

Much more on the full article.

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Naxos Records is the world’s leading classical music label as measured by the number of new recordings it releases and the depth and breadth of its catalogue. Naxos was founded in 1987 by Klaus Heymann, a German-born entrepreneur based in Hong Kong. Under his continuing stewardship, Naxos has developed from being known primarily as a budget label focusing on standard repertoire into a global music group comprising a raft of downloading and streaming platforms, a significant catalogue of multimedia products, a vast international logistics network, a recording engineering arm, a publications division, and a licensing department.

Naxos, the record label, has transformed into a virtual encyclopaedia of classical music with a catalogue of unparalleled depth and breadth. Innovative strategies for recording exciting new repertoire with exceptional talent have enabled Naxos Records to develop one of the largest and fastest-growing catalogues of unduplicated repertoire. Some 9,000 titles are currently available at affordable prices, recorded in state-of- the-art sound, both in hard format and on digital platforms. Naxos works with artists of the highest calibre and its recordings have been recognised with numerous Grammy® awards, Penguin Guide 3-star recommendations, Gramophone Editor’s Choice Awards and many other international honours.

Naxos still stays true to its original promise of offering great value. Costs are kept to a minimum by focusing on the music rather than the artist; money is not wasted on expensive artist promotions, and profits are invested into recordings of new music rather than multiple versions of standard repertoire already in the catalogue. Naxos recordings include complete cycles or cycles-in- progress of basic repertoire, such as the complete piano works of Liszt or the complete string quartets of Haydn, but the label has also introduced music lovers to many neglected composers, such as Joachim Raff, Ferdinand Ries and Simon Mayr. It has also helped to put contemporary composers such as Krzysztof Penderecki, John Corigliano and William Bolcom in reach of a much wider audience. Additionally the label continues to add to the numerous world première recordings it already has to its credit.

Naxos Records also has gained stature by pioneering groundbreaking projects like the American Classics series. Currently numbering about 200 titles, the series is set to be the most comprehensive recording project of American concert music ever attempted. Naxos is also leading the field with the landmark Naxos Historical Series. The releases in this massive restoration project are engineered by leading restoration engineers/artists. The series covers all genres of classical music as well as legends of jazz and pop music from the first half of the 20th century. Other notable Naxos series include Japanese Classics, Spanish Classics, Early Music, Organ Encyclopaedia, the Guitar Collection, and Opera Classics. The catalogue of Naxos World, a pioneering world music label, includes international music of many different cultures and genres, folk, pop and classical alike.

All this, together with the development of a range of apps and ebooks, demonstrates the Naxos commitment to providing the best possible access to recorded classical music in the world.

Naxos Records is part of the Naxos Music Group. For a comprehensive presentation of the group’s services and products, please visit

John Schaefer

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