• Louis Karchin – To the Sun and Stars

    I had to listen to this collection of Louis Karchin’s vocal music several times before I really felt I understand what was going on and could then evaluate it fairly. That’s a shortcoming on my part, but I will say that the exercise was not without reward. For the most part, Karchin sets his texts […]

  • Miho Fukui performs Vivaldi bassoon concertos with energy

    Antonio Vivaldi wrote over 30 concertos for the bassoon, giving Miho Fukui a lot to choose from. Five of them, plus the Sinfonia from “Il Giustino”, RV 217 make up this new release. Included is the concerto in B-flat major, “La Notte,” RV 501, an oft-recorded work. Bassoonist Miho Fukui plays with a rich, full-bodied […]

  • Anguish and Triumph – a new Beethoven biography

    Why do we need a new biography of Beethoven, the facts of whose life are already well-known and whose works are among the most familiar in the entire repertoire?  Jan Swafford, composer, scholar, and distinguished biographer of Brahms and Charles Ives, answers that question handsomely in his new Beethoven: Anguish and Triumph (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt […]

  • Sculthorpe: Compete String Quartets with Didjeridu

    Peter Sculthorpe’s music captures the Australian character as completely as Aaron Copland’s does the American. In his compositions for string quartet and didjeridu, Sculthorpe highlights the tensions between the indigenous aborigines of Australia and the encroachment of Western settlers. The string quartet is a distinctively European invention, the didjeridu an Australian. And yet Sculthorpe skillfully […]

  • Deborah Murray’s finale on Classical Sunrise

    This Sunday, please remember to tune in to Classical Sunrise, 6-9 am, here on WTJU-Charlottesville. After 15 years, Deborah Murray is bowing out as host of the program, and this will be her last show. Deborah has been an outstanding station volunteer, not only hosting a program, but also serving as Classical Department Director. She […]

  • Martin Boykan – Music for Piano (1986-2007)

    Martin Boykan’s music is rigorously 12-tone, but that doesn’t mean it’s academic nor mechanistic. His music breathes, expanding and contracting in a naturalistic flow. While there are some abrupt changes in dynamics and tempo, often the music smoothly transitions from one emotional state to the next. This album features four piano works by Boykan, It […]

  • George Ensecu Complete Works for Violin and Piano

    Among his many talents, Romanian composer George Enescu was a violinist and a pianist — which makes the music on this 2-CD set so fascinating. The larger works, such as his three sonatas for violin and piano are the Enescu of the symphonic world. Like his orchestral works, the three sonatas feature flowing melodies, harmonies […]

  • Fresh Corelli – the Assisi Sonatas

    Arcangelo Corelli is a well-known composer, but only for a fraction of his output. Like many Baroque composers, the bulk of his music was never published. In Corelli’s case, only the 72 sonatas made it to publication, and his reputation rests on those 72 works. This new collection brings an additional 12 works to light, […]

  • Falletta and Buffalo Philharmonic Excel with Early Bartok

    A young Bela Bartók wrote he was “roused as by a clap of thunder at the first performance of Also sprach Zarathustra.. The work brought me  to a pitch of enthusiasm. I felt a reaching out to something new. I threw myself into the study of Strauss.” That inspiration is quite evident in this collection […]