Bali hi!

I recently took a short break on the Indonesian island of Bali, a three-day cocktail not just of swimming, surfing and sunsets; colourful batik, engaging artwork and an ancient temple completed the mix. Ambling around the grounds of that temple, and above the respectful silence of the bevy of tourists, there floated a sound: gently Read More …

Podcast: 20th-century harpsichord music. An irresistible revival.

It was the great virtuoso Wanda Landowska who spearheaded a revival of interest in the dormant harpsichord at the turn of the 20th century. Working closely with Pleyel of Paris, the instrument manufacturer, she helped develop and promote a sturdier and more sonorous instrument than was hitherto the case. Composers of the time weren’t slow Read More …

Podcast: Poised purity. Poulenc’s choral settings

Raymond Bisha introduces the latest Naxos recording of the Elora Festival Singers in performances of Poulenc’s unaccompanied choral works. Transcending a backcloth of geopolitical and personal turmoil, these gems marry a delicacy of form with harmonic pungency, described by conductor Noel Edison as “like putting a stained glass to song.” View album details of Francis Read More …