Naxos Classical Spotlight explores the world of classical music. Along the way host Raymond Bisha shares the stories about the music, and the musicians who make it.
Versatilité sans frontières. Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint–Georges (1745–1799).
Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, was a brilliant swordsman, athlete, violin virtuoso and gifted composer, with a claim to being the most talented figure in an age of remarkable individuals. He was an early and important exponent of the hybrid symphonie concertante, a genre that draws on both the symphony and concerto traditions. In this podcast Raymond Bisha talks with Dr Allan Badley, co-founder of Artaria Editions.
String Quartets from Jurgis Karnavicius
Lithuanian composer Jurgis Karnavičius was born in 1884, and became one of the early classical music leaders in his country. His 3rd and 4th string quartets were composed and first performed in the 1920's, and then ignored for decades. This podcast, and the new recording by the Vilnius String Quartet show why Karnavičius deserves to be remembered.
Jazz idioms, classical structures. Symphonic works by Nikolai Kapustin (1937–2020).
Significantly influenced by his experience of playing in some of the earliest Soviet jazz bands, Nikolai Kapustin trained as a pianist at the Moscow Conservatory but subsequently devoted himself to composition. His output includes many works for piano, two of which are featured on this new album — the Fourth Piano Concerto and the Concerto for Violin, Piano and Orchestra, along with his Chamber Symphony, Op. 57. Raymond Bisha introduces both the music and the propulsive energy of Frank Dupree.
Music of Brazil. The Villa-Lobos violin sonatas.
Raymond Bisha prefaces his latest podcast with this introduction: “Heitor Villa-Lobos, the prolific Brazilian composer of some 2,000 works, conductor, cellist, guitarist and music educationalist, wrote his three violin sonatas between 1912 and 1920. When he wrote the first sonata, he was still a struggling young composer trying to make a name for himself, while playing all kinds of gigs to pay the bills.
Camille Saint-Saëns. A symphonic collection.
French composer Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) is remembered as someone who could spin melodies as easily as he breathed. Naxos is marking the centenary of his death with a 3-CD box set that comprises all his symphonies and a sequence of atmospheric and dramatic symphonic poems, including Phaéton and the ever-popular Danse macabre. Raymond Bisha presents an overview of these recordings by the Malmö Symphony Orchestra and conductor Marc Soustrot, a noted French music specialist.
The Power of Tower
With multiple GRAMMY nominations and wide critical acclaim to her credit, Joan Tower’s latest album in the Naxos American Classics series demonstrates why she is so often performed, and why she is such a respected person among American composers. Raymond Bisha presents the programme on her new release that comprises four world premiere recordings. Soloists Dame Evelyn Glennie (percussion) and Blair McMillen (piano) feature alongside David Alan Miller and the Albany Symphony Orchestra.
More Women Please!
Please include works by female composers! There are a lot to choose from.