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"Every year, the Gramophone Awards stop the clock and take stock of the year's releases. This year (mid-2009 to mid-2010) is a particularly rich one with the independent sector showing characteristic imagination and flair. The releases below are short-listed for Gramophone Awards and represent a wonderful addition to the classical music catalogue."  - James Jolly, Editor in Chief, Gramophone

Baroque Instrumental:

ABEL, C.F.: Viola da Gamba Suites (Pandolfo)

One of the master viol-players of our time playing this unfamiliar music with great poetry and imagination.
VIVALDI, A.: Concertos - RV 100, 114, 119, 157, 185, 211, 432, 438, 468, 488 (The French Connection) (Chandler)

An imaginatively assembled programme that shows off the prodigious creativity of the Red Priest. Some wonderfully virtuoso performances.

Baroque Vocal:

SCHUTZ, H.: Geburt unsers Herren Jesu Christi (Die) / Die Auferstehung unsres Herren Jesu Christi (Hillier)

One of the most admired composers of his day and for following generations. And here's a disc that demonstrates why!


BEETHOVEN, L. van.: Violin Sonatas (Complete) (Faust, Melnikov)

One of the great sets of the Beethoven sonatas - two strong personalities making these often familiar works sound totally fresh again.


MARTIN, F.: Golgotha [Oratorio] (Reuss)

A real discovery: Frank Martin's Bach-inspired meditation receives a performance that shows off the power of his spiritually intense choral work.
VAUGHAN WILLIAMS, R.: Dona Nobis Pacem / Sancta Civitas (Pier, Brook, Staples, Bach Choir, Winchester Cathedral Choristers,Bournemouth Symphony, Hill)

Vaughan Williams at his most glorious performed by a choir with a long and distinguished heritage - all at Naxos's 'can't-refuse' price.


PROKOFIEV, S.: Piano Concertos Nos. 2 and 3 / Piano Sonata No. 2 (Kempf, Bergen Philharmonic, Litton)

One of the finest recordings Freddy Kempf has made - sparkling and powerful pianism, superbly supported by Andrew Litton and his Norwegian band.


CHIN, Unsuk: Rocana / Violin Concerto (Hagner, Montreal Symphony, Nagano)

Composers must dream of advocacy like this. Vivianne Hagner plays with total command and commitment - and Nagano clearly believes in this music too.

Early Music:

Choral Concert: Christ Church Cathedral Choir - FAWKYNER, J. / CORNYSH I / LAMBE, W. (More Divine than Human - Music from the Eton Choirbook)

A very impressive exploration of one of the major collections of English music from the Middle Ages. A, Oxford choir on top form.


DEBUSSY, C.: Piano Music (Complete), Vol. 5 (Bavouzet) - Khamma / Jeux / La boite a joujoux

A further instalment in the series that brought Bavouzet and Chandos an awrd last year. THE French pianist of our time?


SAARIAHO, K.: Amour de loin (L') [Opera] (Nagano)

Nagano gives a wonderfully committed and powerful reading of his seeringly beautiful score.

Solo vocal:

SCHUBERT, F.: Lieder, Vol. 4 - Heliopolis (Goerne, Metzmacher)

Or is Goerne worthy of the title? Another beautiful voice used with great imagination and intelligence.


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