Robert Kyr. Three World Premieres
Craig Hella Johnson
Craig Hella Johnson leads Conspirare, soprano Estelí Gomez, baritone David Farwig, and the Victoria Bach Festival Orchestra in this first recording of three exquisite choral works by the American composer Robert Kyr.
Advance reviews for Robert Kyr are glowing. It’s WQXR’s Album of the Week and the Buffalo New wrote: “This is almost shockingly exquisite music … magnificently performed by one of the great current choral aggregates, with soloists soprano Estelí Gomez and [baritone] David Farwig … deeply moving” (Buffalo News).
Can one really grasp the whole of Mahler’s symphonic output without knowing his songs? Not only do they extensively influence the first four symphonies (sometimes referred to as the ‘Wunderhorn symphonies’), they also encapsulate the fundamental principles of his reading of the world. On this recording, the superb mezzo-soprano Bernarda Fink explores Mahler's song cycles from three different angles. It includes the traditional lieder format with piano, songs with orchestral accompaniment and Arnold Schoenberg's illuminating chamber transcription of the Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen.
Renowned for their unearthly vocal blend and virtuosic ensemble singing, the four women of Anonymous 4 combine historical scholarship with contemporary performance intuition to create their magical sound. On their 1994 album Love’s Illusion, the extraordinary quartet brought 13th century motets of courtly love from the Montpellier Codex to the top of the classical charts – spending 29 weeks on the Billboard Top 200. Twenty years later, they return to the source – this time exploring songs with texts that juxtapose desire for the earthly lady Marion and adoration of the heavenly Virgin Mary.view
"At last, something genuinely new." It was in these terms that Ferruccio Busoni greeted the publication in 1908 of the 14 Bagatelles, in which Béla Bartók conveyed the violent aesthetic impact of his discovery of authentic Hungarian peasant music. Over the next twenty years, up to the magisterial Piano Sonata of 1926, he indefatigably refined an innovative pianistic language – pungent, dissonant and percussive, with multiple new playing techniques – that was to influence the entire 20th century. A master of every style, from Haydn to Boulez by way of Chopin and Chabrier, Alain Planès stands revealed here as a Bartókian of the front rank.