A majority of well-known composers have written at least a few chamber compositions in their entire lifetime. The most famous would have to be Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, and probably Prokofiev. Some, including Respighi and Vaughan Williams, are overlooked or even rejected in today's society. Whether it's because of lack of originality or excessive complexities, these sorts of compositions are always left in the dark. Take Rachmaninov's Cello Sonata, for instance. This 35-minute work doesn't receive the complete recognition it deserves. It's overshadowed by the composer's piano concertos and symphonies, all of which are respectfully first-rate works in their own right.
A third volume in Hyperion’s Complete Liszt Songs cycle warmly welcomes to the series maestro Gerald Finley. The songs themselves encompass everything from finely honed miniatures to big-boned epics of tragic import, and these compelling performances elicit from the multi-award-winning pairing of Finley and Julius Drake a sense of paced drama and pathos which is rarely matched.
Composer Edouard Lalo's work encompassed the period of Romanticism that witnessed the evolution of the romance de salon genre into the melodie francaise or French art song. It is an injustice of posterity that only Faure, Duparc and Debussy acquired true fame in this genre. This collection from baritone Tassis Christoyannis and pianist Jeff Cohen featuring the two scenes de salon for voice and piano, the seven romances and the 23 melodies, shows that Lalo easily stands alongside his more well-known countrymen.
This two-cd survey of Franz Schreker's forty-eight completed songs concludes with a selection that provides a sweeping overview of his lyric accomplishment, from prize-winning early efforts as a student at the Vienna Conservatory to a crowning masterpiece, written at the height of his international fame. Although by their number Lieder do not loom large in his creative output (that place is given to his operas, and secondarily to his orchestral works) Schreker's songs nonetheless document each stage of his stylistic development and contain some of his finest music…
"…these performances are extraordinary. All three vocalists communicate words and emotions superbly." ~Fanfare