The WSCL Blog

News and information about WSCL's Classical Music Programming

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Just Opened - Dec. 6th

Our After-the-news-at-Noon theme this month is "Ave Maria."  This is also the title of a new release from a tenor whose formative years were spent in the Sistine Chapel choir, Vittorio Grigolo.  We contrast this very peaceful Christmas release with the Brassy blast of Christmas songs from the Canadian Brass.  We mix the gift-giving possibilities with the new release from 5 piano family team, The Browns, and some new works for bassoon from Frank Morelli.  Then we return to peaceful traditional holiday works from a group that just performed locally in Cambridge as part of the Christ Church (Cambridge) Concert Series in November, the Pax Dei Trio.

Vittorio Grigolo, tenor
The Sistine Chapel Choir
Roma Sinfonietta
SONY 786372
ISBN# 8 8883 78637 2 8
Grigolo's official website
My Delight of the Week!  Growing up as a member of the Sistine Chapel choir, Grigolo developed a love of traditional church music and the literature of great vocal music.  Paying tribute to his training and faith, this CD uses settings of Ave Maria as a repeated touchstone for a varity of works that showcase his magnificent voice.

Frank Morelli, basson
Gilbert Kalish, piano
MSR 1458
ISBN# 6 81585 14582 1
 Morelli's official website
This CD takes the creamy sound of basson and uses that "voice" in our most challenging selections for this week.  Works from the 1900s either written or transcribed for bassoon.  Ravel's "Kaddish" will be a familiar resonance, with works that will be new to most, and a surprisingly tuneful Sonata by Hindemith.  While these selections will appeal most to the very musically adventurous, Morelli has a wealth of recordings available to make a gift of smooth bassoon-y indulgence.

The Canadian Brass
ISBN# 0 34062 30027 3
for more info. on The Canadian Brass
The Canadian Brass is always finding new ways to bring us adventures in brass music.  After a serious and pleasing release earlier this year of full works by Schumann transcribed for Brass, they turn their Christmas attention to popular works composed for animated holiday specials.  A sure-fire people pleaser!

The Rite of Spring
ISBN# 0 34062 30031 0
5 Browns official website
The five browns have grown up in front of audience, always "wow-ing" with the rare combination of five pianos in a unified voice.  This new release takes major orchestral works and transcribes them for 5 pianos.  While the Browns say they were attracted to the percussive elements of the Rite of Spring, placing this work within the same voicing of multiple pianos gives it a surprisingly mellow flavor... just like the Browns themselves... something unexpected.

Pax Dei Trio (Flute, Harp, & Soprano)
for artist info. & CD purchase
ISBN# 8 22371 14127 0
On November 17th the Pax Dei Trio performed locally as part of the Christ Church (Cambridge) Concert Series.  This trio of talented women performing mostly their own arrangements of traditional works have pooled their talents and resources to provide uplifting music and to share proceeds with organizations that promote the welfare of women and families.  If you like to support worthy causes, and "smaller" artists who perform in your local area - and you like soothing traditional music for your holiday - this is the one for you.

More Christmas music coming your way next week, Just Opened.
Kara Dahl Russell

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