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BBC Music Magazine

BBC Music Magazine November 2019

BBC Music Magazine is a must for anyone with a passion for classical music. Classical music connoisseurs and new enthusiast alike will enjoy the fascinating features and reviews of over 120 new works in every issue. Please Note: Our digital edition does not include the cover mount items or supplements you would normally find with printed copies

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Immediate Media Company London Limited
Frequency:
Monthly
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13 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
this month’s contributors

Rebecca Franks BBC Music’s managing editor ‘It was utterly fascinating to meet the brilliant pianist Igor Levit, whose debut album of late Beethoven sonatas is one of my personal favourites. He’s clearly someone who lives, breathes and dreams Beethoven.’ Page 28 Erik Levi Lecturer and writer ‘I was aware of Shostakovich’s intense enthusiasm for football, but hadn’t realised how much it acted as a panacea from the difficulties and pressures he faced, particularly during the Stalin era.’ Page 46 Caroline Rae Lecturer and writer ‘One of the most popular composers in post-war Britain, Poulenc epitomised the quintessentially French while combining a depth of musical expression with a deceptive simplicity akin to Mozart.’ Page 66…

1 min.
welcome

I’m in awe of anyone who records complete works by a single composer, particularly one that requires super-human feats of memory and stamina – and faith on the part of the record label. There’s a renewed optimism in the industry now that streaming has opened up fresh audiences, and artists are again being encouraged to set down, for instance, Mozart’s 18 piano sonatas, Haydn’s 104 symphonies, all 20 hours of Bach’s organ music, even all 555 Scarlatti keyboard sonatas. Phew. Some are recorded over several years, such as Mazaaki Suzuki and the Bach Collegium Japan’s Bach cantata cycle which crossed the finishing line in 2013 after 18 years. And organist Peter Hurford’s Bach was captured between 1977 and ’86, albeit on instruments in both hemispheres! But some are recorded in short…

1 min.
letter of the month

Great Leifs When BBC Music Magazine invited us to continue our musical journey after Haydn’s The Creation (September issue), I was delighted to see that Jón Leifs’s magnum opus Edda – Part I was one of the recommended works. I first came across Iceland’s best-loved composer when my daughter was at the university in Reykjavík for a year. At her recommendation, I began to explore his music. Leifs has created a soundworld unlike any other, which reflects the ice and fire of the Icelandic landscape and its people’s psyche. He grew up at a time when Icelanders who wished to pursue a university education had to go abroad and, having left, often saw no reason to return. Leifs, however, not only came back but was determined to develop the country’s musical life. For…

4 min.
have your say…

Starting points At the end of your First Impressions feature (October) you ask us to share the first piece of classical music that inspired us as children. At the age of 11, having collected a few 78s of popular music, I switched on the wireless one day and was transfixed by what I heard – a piece of music that I wanted to go on forever. It was La mer by Debussy and it changed my life. That was 65 years ago and I’ve been exploring symphonic music ever since. Richard Howard, Banstead The editor replies: We would love to hear from readers about the pieces that first got you into classical music. Drop us a note, and we’ll print the best next month. American pioneer Your Composer of the Month feature on Aaron Copland…

2 min.
new releases on warner classics and erato

DONG HYEK LIM MARTHA ARGERICH Dong Hyek Lim takes two pianistic roles on this all-Rachmaninov album: soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Alexander Vedernikov in the much-loved Piano Concerto No 2 in C minor, and duo partner to his mentor, the great Martha Argerich, in the composer’s two-piano transcription of the enthralling and enigmatic Symphonic Dances. QUATUOR AROD ELSA DREISIG With this album of works by Schoenberg, Zemlinsky and Webern, the Quatuor Arod honours the woman who became Arnold Schoenberg’s wife in 1901. Mathilde was Zemlinsky’s sister and the dedicatee of her husband’s String Quartet No 2, an innovative work in both its tonal language and its integration of a soprano – here Elsa Dreisig. LUCIENNE RENAUDIN-VARY Trumpeter Lucienne Renaudin Vary makes a musical transatlantic crossing with her second album for Warner Classics. Mademoiselle…

2 min.
bbc national orchestra of wales names its new man

Beautiful things happen by the Welsh seaside. After stepping in at the last minute to conduct the BBC National Orchestra of Wales in concerts in Aberystwyth, Bangor and Llandudno in late 2018, Ryan Bancroft got on so well with the ensemble and audiences that he has now been invited back to be its new principal conductor. The 29-year-old American will begin his new job at the beginning of the 2020-21 season, initially on a three-year contract. The LA-born Bancroft takes over from Thomas Søndergård, who held the post from 2018-20. As part of the role, he will be revisiting those coastal haunts on the orchestra’s tours of Wales and England, but will be largely based at its BBC Hoddinott Hall home in Cardiff, where it records regularly for BBC radio and…