There are many different musical "Seasons" aside from Vivaldi's, and next to Haydn's oratorio of the same name, this is probably the most famous example. The complete ballet is of modest length–only 40 minutes or so–and the autumn "Bacchanal" contains what is probably the catchiest tune that Glazunov ever wrote. You'll probably think that you've heard it before, but can't quite figure out where. Neeme Jarvi is always at his best in big, splashy Romantic pieces, and this performance is no exception. He whips the orchestra up to a fine frenzy where necessary, and given Chandos's fine sound and a sensible coupling, you're in for some good listening.
Hyperion has reissued on its midpriced Helios label this fine program of English works for string quartet, recorded in 1994. The composers, born approximately 20 years apart in the order given in the headnote, offer an insight into the evolutionary trends in British music before, throughout, and after the 20th century’s two Great Wars.
Medieval Baebes and other far greater shocks to the bourgeoisie have come along. Wild adventures placed under the rubric of performances of Vivaldi's Four Seasons are commonplace. Yet Nigel Kennedy continues to roost atop the classical sales charts in Europe, and even to command a decent following in the U.S. despite a low American tolerance for British eccentricity. How does he do it? He has kept reinventing himself successfully. Perhaps he's the classical world's version of Madonna: he's possessed of both unerring commercial instincts and with enough of a sense of style to be able to dress them up as forms of rebellion. Inner Thoughts is a collection of slow movements – inner movements of famous concertos from Bach and Vivaldi to Brahms, Bruch, and Elgar. Actually, the only composer falling into the middle of that large chronological gap is Mendelssohn; Kennedy apparently needs a sort of otherworldly serenity for this project, which Baroque and post-Romantic slow movements may have, but Mozart does not. At any rate, this is no radical idea; it's a softball straight up the middle.
Released to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Michael Rabin's death on 19th January 1972 this collection brings together his finest recordings on EMI Classics in one comprehensive 6CD set.
Rabin was widely regarded as the finest virtuoso violinist of his generation and despite dying at the young age of 36 after suffering with a neurological illness his fame continues long after his death.