A hum of harmoniums?

I’m not sure what the collective noun for a group of harmoniums might be (or should that be harmonia?), but this blog will take singular appearances by the instrument in some of the repertoire housed in the Naxos group’s catalogues. Maybe you’ve come across a hand-pumped version of the instrument whilst dining to live music Read More …

Podcast: VOX • 2. The legacy of Maurice Abravanel.

Raymond Bisha’s second podcast featuring historic recordings on the VOX label explores those made of Tchaikovsky’s music by the Utah Symphony Orchestra under Maurice Abravanel, who was the ensemble’s music director for more than 30 years. From the performances, to the production team of Marc Aubort and Joanna Nickrenz, the liner notes by Richard Freed, Read More …

Podcast: JoAnn Falletta, the Buffalo Philharmonic and music by Zoltán Kodály

This podcast features broadcaster Peter Hall in a conversation with JoAnn Falletta, music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic, about her October release on the Naxos label, which is the second of two albums featuring all of Zoltán Kodály’s works for orchestra.       View album details Catalogue No.: 8.574556   https://blog.naxos.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/07/Podcast-JoAnnFalletta_v1.mp3Podcast: Play in new Read More …

Podcast: Jennifer Higdon. 2 Spectacular Concertos • 1 Sizzling Recording

This podcast features American composer Jennifer Higdon in a wide-ranging conversation with Raymond Bisha, during which she describes the long swathe of influences on her composing career. The musical spotlights comprise extracts from her latest recording for Naxos of two powerfully engaging works: the Concerto for Orchestra, written in 2002 and demanding virtuosity from principal Read More …

Probing the naughties

I was once asked what had been the seismic developments in the history of the development of music, equivalent to scientific discoveries that had opened up entirely new vistas for society. I heard myself replying that there hadn’t been any; that from the first Neanderthal sounds on animal bones until the present day, composers had Read More …

Podcast: VOX: Restoring a unique voice.

Raymond Bisha presents the first in a series of podcasts that explore newly remastered recordings on the VOX label dating from the 1970s. This instalment features four albums by the St Louis Symphony Orchestra under Leonard Slatkin, in which the orchestra and solo pianists Abbey Simon and Jeffrey Siegel variously perform works by Rachmaninov and Read More …

A buzzin’ half-dozen

This is the period known in many parts of the world as the silly season, the time when news agencies struggle to post engaging headlines of serious news items during the peak holiday period. So, I thought this blog could follow suit by reminding everyone that 20 August each year marks World Mosquito Day. Actually, Read More …

Percy Bysshe Shelley. Musical moments of a Romantic radical.

It caught my eye that the date of this post would coincide with the anniversary of the birth of Percy Bysshe Shelley, one of England’s finest Romantic poets. Born on 4 August 1792, he didn’t live to see his 30th birthday. He was a radical, and not only in his poetry. His stance on religious Read More …

How does your garden go?

A blog on gardens in bloom would normally be appropriate for a readership in only one hemisphere at a time, I thought; but with global warming controlling the hosepipe I’m not so sure. Anyway, encouraged by the beautiful blooms and alluring aromas that currently accompany my morning walks through the park, I decided to clip Read More …

Podcast: Claudio Santoro: Orchestral Explorations of the 1960s

Brazilian composer Claudio Santoro (1919–1989) proved a dynamic force for his country’s classical music scene. His life was both intertwined with, and deeply influenced by, the political and social events playing out around him, from the building of the Berlin Wall in Europe to political upheavals in his homeland. Through it all, his compositions reflected Read More …