The WSCL Blog

News and information about WSCL's Classical Music Programming

Friday, September 13, 2013

Just Opened, Sept. 13, 2013 - Lucky 13!

Poulenc and Piaf interpreted on Piano, Cello Masterworks, New Works for Saxophone, and a "rediscovered" controversy about an opera by... Vivaldi?   All this today on Just Opened.... aren't we lucky?

THE RASCAL AND THE SPARROW
Poulenc Meets Piaf
Antonio Pompa-Baldi, piano
STEINWAY & SONS 30015
ISBN# 0 304062 30015 0
The springboard idea for this CD came from Poulenc himself.  Amidst his 15 Improvisations for Piano, one was titled in hommage to Piaf.  This work is played here, along with other Poulenc works, and truly marvelous concert renditions of famous Piaf songs.  My only quibble is that the rarely recorded Poulenc 15 were not ALL recorded here to complete the concept.  Acessible in the extreme, virtuosic, and for all who loved the little sparrow (Piaf), also a trip down memory lane, completely free of musty cobwebs.

VIVALDI & OTHERS
Andromeda Liberata
Andrea Marcon, cond.
Venice Baroque Orchestra
ARCHIVE 3456
ISBN# 0 28947 70982 4
Reserchers discovered that one aria in Andromeda Liberata is the work of Vivaldi.  The buzz aroused in the music circles... perhaps the entire work is Vivaldi's?  Will we ever know?  Does it matter?  Perhaps not when the performance is by the ever brilliant Venice Baroque and their marvelous soloists.  We can ponder the unknowable geneology while we revel in the music.

 VOICES OF DISSENT
Music for Saxophone and Piano
(and clarinet)
Joren Cain, saxophone
MSR 1408
ISBN# 6 81585 14082 6
Often the musical voice of sexual lust in film scores of the 1940s & 50s , the saxophone was also the voice of cool in bands and the club scene.  The improvisational sound became a basic for the saxophone and many of these new works feel unfortunately familiar, full of musical virtuosic technique, but melodically meandering beyond the patience of all but the most devoted sax-y.  Fortunately, those pieces are punctuated by works that are reminiscent of the best of the turn of the 1900s ... very "les six" in style, melody and fun.  Don't let the cover art put you off from many enjoyable new works here.

WENDY WARNER
Haydn & Myslivecek
Drostan Hall, cond.
Camerata Chicago
CEDILLE 142
ISBN# 7 35151--422 2
MY DELIGHT OF THE WEEK!  No need to ignore the cover art here, the luscious beauty of the cellist equal the sound of her instrument.  Warner really knows how to work a camera - as any modern soloist needs to do.  Fortunately she works the cello even better, and we have gorgeous, traditional late Baroque/early Classical works recorded on this CD.  Contemporaries F.J. Haydn and Josef Myslivecek greatly helped solidify the transition from viol da gamba to cello with works like these.  Myslivecek's is an arrangement of a violin work, but that was quite common during this time period; many composers making multiple arrangments of the same work featuring a different solo voice.  Great cellists are not a dime-a-dozen, and Warner has been quickly rising above the pack.  She's a "name" to keep an eye on, and a solid addition to your music library.

Join us next week for more new releases, Just Opened.
Kara Dahl Russell

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